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Old 09-19-2013, 04:41 AM   #74
Ladybug0048 OP
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Joined: Nov 2005
Location: Spokane Valley, WA (the dry side of the mountains)
Oddometer: 10,539
I was headed for Willapa Hills Trail however I didnít pay attention to the trail part and was looking for a State Park. I headed for where I thought I would find the "state park" but I didnít see any sign nor a park. The road turned to dirt and after I went around two switch backs I stopped to see where the GPS pointed the geocache to be. It told me it was back where I came from but I didnít see a park there. I decided since I didnít know where the road was going I would turn around.

 
 
After going back down I decided to give up on that one, for now, and go find the cache at the Rainbow Falls State Park. It had been a number of years since I had been to that park and at the time you could access it from Hwy 6. Now you have to cross the river and access it from the North side.

 

 
Cache found

 

 
I liked the blue Geiko gecko. Itís trackable and even though I thought it was cool I left it for someone else to find. Sometimes I will take trackable items to a new cache but other times I donít.

 
Iím starting to get some stamps on my two page "passport".

 
There is sign describing a flood that went through in 2007 which change the park to some degree. I looked it up after I got home and found this article: http://blog.oregonlive.com/terryrichard/2008/06/rainbow_falls_a_peacful_place.html I donít remember when the last time I was there but I know it was before it flooded and the fish were swimming up stream. It was the first and only time I have seen fish and "climbing" a falls. The falls isnít big but it is swift. It was very memorable.

This time the river was pretty dry, so much so I didnít even bother to take any pictures of it. I was looking forward to seeing the old bridge again and it was gone. All in all it was a fairly disappointing stop. The up side though is I did check out the campground and it looks nice. When I stopped before I didnít even realize there was a campground there. Knowing where nice campground are makes it easier for me when Iím traveling especially in areas where you really canít just pull off and set up camp.
 
As I was leaving the Rainbow Falls State Park I saw a sign Willapa Hills Trail and an arrow pointing east on Leudinghaus Rd. Ok I would follow it and see if I could find that cache. As I was riding along it finally dawned on me that I should be looking for a trail and not a park.
 
My GPS didnít think I was going the right way and wanted me to turn around.

 
That road had me back to where I was earlier but coming in from the other side. At the bottom of the hill I once again didnít see any trailhead signs. I rode a little ways and as the GPS indicated I was moving away from the cache I decided to turn around and go back. There was a small parking area and I realized it was for the trail.

 
The only sign indicating the trail. I was looking for a state park tail sign so didnít pay much attention to this sign when I past it. Observation sometimes is missing in my little bag of tricks

 
Maybe thatís why there are no signs, the trail is closed.

 
I looked at the gate and I donít like to do things Iím not supposed to do so I walked around trying to decide what to do. I didnít want to access a closed trail but at the same time after coming all this way plus the effort it took me to find the trail I hated the idea of not getting the cache.
While I was thinking I took time to enjoy the flowers.

 

 

 
Finally I decided to go ahead and walk down the trail and look for the cache. The cache was only a half-mile from the parking area so I figured all would be fine and heck there was no one around. I couldn't imgine anyone would catch me going where I wasn't supposed to be.
 
I kept seeing squiggly lines on the road and wondered what made them.
Then I found the culprit.

Maybe he needs a GPS to show him where to go.

 
Ahead there were two small deer in the road. I thought they would get spooked when they saw me but one in particular was very curious, watching me and started walking my direction. Meanwhile I could hear the mom in the bushes whistling that high pitch whistle deer make when they think there is danger.

 
I looked at my GPS and realized I had passed the cache so I left the deer alone and returned to find the cache.
 
The GPS reception was very spotty in this area but luckily the owner of the cache had a good description in the hints so I was able to find it.

 
From the trail you couldnít see the cache but from behind the tree it was easy to spot.

 

 
With the cache found I started the walk back to the bike. The trail is on an old railroad bed and is flat, straight and fairly boring. It would be a nice bicycle path though. As I was walking I spotted this feather and stopped to check it out.

 
As I was looking at the feather on the ground, I like how deep blue it is, I heard a noise ahead on the trail. I looked up to see the cab of a state park pickup pointed down the trail. Ahhhhhh crap. The noise I heard was the gate opening so they could drive in. My mind started to run in circles, wondering what to do. I didnít think they had seen me, I could hide in the bushes. I didnít want to do that since if they had seen me then I would look like I was up to no good. I kept walking trying to come up with a good story as to why I was on a closed trail. I couldnít say I didnít see the sign. I no longer can get away with batting my eyes and looking cute (that ship sailed years ago) I didnít have a good reasons for being there and I couldnít even come up with a believable lieÖÖ Crap, crap, crapÖÖthis is why I donít like to do things Iím not supposed to do.
As I continue to walk to the trail entrance the pickup came toward me, I figured I would just tell them I was looking for a cache. Going for the truth would be best. When the pickup got to where I was I smiled and waved. The two people in the cab smiled, waved back, and kept going. WhewÖ.. no explanation needed. I was doing a lot of sweating for nothing. I didnít like that.
 
The map doesnít look like finding the Willapa Hills Trail should be all that difficult. I just made it harder than it needed to be.

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