From dragging my travel trailer all around the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State to a cross-country car camping excursion lasting five weeks beginning in August, the Summer of ’16 will be packed with fascinating new adventures and stories spanning America’s favorite — and lesser-known — highways and byways.
The travel season began early with a week-long trip to Walla Walla in mid-May, where I attended the Northwest Travel Writers Conference: Travels and Words at the historic and lavish Marcus Whitman hotel. Two solid days hearing from experienced and well-published writers and editors, shaking hands with representatives from convention and travel bureaus and destination management organizations filled my writing palette with a host of new inspiration and opportunities to engage readers with fascinating material.
Following the first day of the conference, we were treated to a lavish reception by Walla Walla’s finest at the Gesa Powerhouse Theater. Exquisite hors d’oeuvres, prime beef, great local wines, whiskey and beer and much more awaited us. Horse-drawn carriages and 1930s-era limousines provided the transportation, and we exchanged handshakes and business cards by the dozens.
From there, I took a quick side trip into the Palouse area of north Idaho and southern Washington for a fast photo or two. And it had to be fast, because I was dogged by heavy rain for most of the journey.
So, unfortunately, was a group of vintage travel-trailer enthusiasts, who had come from all over the west for a rally at the campground I was staying in when the first rains hit. Hosted by the Walla Walla Tin Cans, who had invited members from the Rollin’ Oldies Vintage Trailers club to the campout, the rally featured about 30 ancient travel trailers ranging from tiny units little more than traveling beds to vintage Coca-Cola themed trailers, mostly ranging from 9-15 feet.
Look for a full-length feature story on the tin can folks in a future blog. Next time, I’ll be posting my itinerary of travels for the 2016 travel season, and hope you’ll follow along as I share my reports from the road.