We hiked and played and waded in the rivers. We saw waterfalls and wildlife (not bears) and amazing views of huge rocks. We watched climbers doing death defying feats and saw a mama duck teaching her little ones how to scavenge and snatch food from pic-nickers. We had a lot of fun, but we also just about froze our self into Popsicles. The first morning we woke up it was below freezing and the next two mornings weren't much better. It took a while to get to the warm side of the mountains. We had tons of s'mores and used every last bit of the hot chocolate we had packed. The kids slept in the same sleeping bag with the other one and two blankets over them and the baby snuggled himself between mom and dad and stayed perfectly warm with his cute hat our friend Pam knitted for him.
Our surprise for the trip was having to buy new tires while in the park. Something about a rock and some damage that had to be fixed right away. Not a typical vacation expense, but I was glad we were able to cover it and get our family home safely. You should have seen us with 3 kids and a soft top car top carrier on top of our VW Passat. Good thing Justin can pack a sea bag well. It translates well to car packing too. We were sardines in there. And it was especially fun on the way home when the drivers side door decided it wouldn't shut all the way any more and we had to strap it closed with the roof bag straps and then climb out the back doors. Oh what an adventure.
The kids took lots of walks and collected rocks that didn't actually come home with us. One night Meg needed to make a potty run in the middle of the night. In a campground with no power at all in the dead of a cold night with no glasses, we headed out. We got lost coming back because I couldn't see. She was patient with me for a while, until she got really cold. Then she started calling for Dad. After that when she woke up she asked him for help first. Smart girl. Or smart Mom, depending on who you ask. I am so glad we were able to go and I hope at least the big kids remember it for some time to come.