Enjoying a solo road trip

Last week I cleaned my car from top to bottom in preparation for a 13 hour drive by myself to Seattle. Ryan couldn’t understand why I would clean it when it was going to get dirty on the trip but that’s exactly why; less dirt and garbage that will build up. Plus I find when my car is clean I am better at keeping it that way.

Armed with several books on CD and healthy snacks I set off. I love this drive. Going through the Kooteneys, down through the forests of North Idaho and the Cascades are awesome. The only boring stretch of this drive is between Spokane and Ellensburg where it is boring and flat agricultural land.

Beautiful view of the Cascades

Beautiful view of the Cascades

The leaves are changing

The leaves are changing

My first stop of the trip was at Lundbreck Falls for a pee break. This amazing spot has tons of parking, viewing platforms and outhouses.

Not a bad spot for a pee break

Not a bad spot for a pee break

Next stop was to Stone’s Throw Café in Blairmore for coffee. I was finally able to try Crowsnest Coffee, a company owned by my former next door neighbour when I was a little kid (I’m talking 6 years old little). Nothing makes me happier then sipping good coffee in the mountains.

A must stop when you're in Blairmore, Alberta

A must stop when you’re in Blairmore, Alberta

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I pulled over in Fernie for a run break. I did a quick 10 minute 1.37 mile run along the river.

Beautiful Fernie

Beautiful Fernie

My running spot

My running spot

I did another quick 10 minute run in Sandpoint, Idaho, a gorgeous mountain town with a long bridge over an enormous lake.

Running in Sandpoint

Running in Sandpoint

I stopped in Coeur d’Alene for lunch and ate in the restaurant while reading a book. The reason I am sharing all these details is because I actually enjoyed my trip! And when I finally made it to Seattle I didn’t have leg and back pain like I normally do when I drive straight through with as few stops as possible.

On the way home, I finally stopped at the wild horse sculpture overlooking the Columbia River. You can only reach this area if you are heading Eastbound on I-90. I stopped and enjoyed the river views before making my climb up the hill to see the sculptures up close.  There is a short but steep path leading up that I recommend no one try in flip flops, that was difficult.

The sculptures you can see from the highway

The sculptures you can see from the highway

I was saddened when I got to the top to see how covered the sculptures were in graffiti. A lot of “So-and-so was here” with a date to mark when they defaced the sculptures.  But ignoring the graffiti, they were beautiful sculptures overlooking a nice view.

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I did a few sun salutations and some poses to stretch out while up there.

Hilltop yoga

Hilltop yoga

I stopped in Sandpoint again to stretch my legs across the bridge. This time I took a book I was close to finishing and read as I walked. I made it all the way to the end and back and finished my book in 30 minutes.

The amazing walking area on the bridge

The amazing walking area on the bridge

Tips for Enjoying a Solo Road Trip

  • Audiobooks– The trip really flew by because I was focused on the story I was listening to and wondering what would happen next.
  • Healthy Snacks– Nothing makes you feel grosser on a road trip then filling up on gas station junk. Pack healthy snack such as fruit, vegetables, hummus and chips, and nuts to keep you full without feeling gross
  • Don’t eat while driving– When you stop for meals, choose a place with healthish options and go inside to eat it. Brink a book and relax and enjoy your meal. Eating fast food while driving causes a mess in your car and again makes you feel gross by the time you reach your destination.
  • Stop for fitness breaks– I felt SO GOOD after my two 10 minute running breaks. I picked beautiful scenic spots where I could just breathe and enjoy my surroundings. Yoga breaks in remote areas are also nice.

6 Comments

  • jeff dawkins September 18, 2013 at 6:30 pm

    you clean you car to remove what you are leaving behind . a clean break !
    .
    are you going to take the long way home and go see your brother before he leaves ?
    .
    have fun . be peaceful …

    Reply
  • Jo @ LivingMintGreen October 4, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    So fun! I love that you took a solo road trip. Maybe I missed it, but did you turn around and come straight back once you hit Seattle?!

    Reply
    • Betty LIVIN October 5, 2013 at 9:16 am

      Ha! No- I stayed with my family for a week and then turned around. It’s a 13 hour drive each way, so you have to figure out how to make it fun!

      Reply
  • 2013- Year End Review | Betty LIVIN December 20, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    […] Solo Road trip to Seattle […]

    Reply
  • Toronto Girl West December 22, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    Once upon a time we lived in the Kootenays, so I know that drive well! 🙂 And you’re right – the bits after Spokane are crazy boring! But the Gorge area more than makes up for it! lol 😉

    Reply
    • Betty LIVIN December 23, 2013 at 6:43 am

      I get to make this drive AGAIN today for Christmas. But this time I have Rocky to keep me company.

      Reply

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