The lake was...beautiful. The first few days were pleasantly cool, almost borderline cold, but it was so nice to simply sit in the cabin, no interruptions, and knit and read to my heart's content. And then the sun popped out, and our days turned to fishing and long walks and simply laying in the sun with good books. The drive up was only two hours, which is just far enough to make you really feel you're getting away, without being tedious, and was through some of the prettiest country that Washington offers. The kids loved the ferry that one must use to reach the little resort we stay at, and Aidyn stared wide eyed as we were shuttled smoothly across the lake with a few other cars. A few more twists and turns through a dense pack of trees broken with small fields of wildflowers and suddenly, the lake opened up before us.

On the edge sat the small cluster of rustic cabins we're so familiar with; Evan's family vacations for two weeks a year at this spot every June. We drove up to the "Grand" cabin, which apparently is one of the perks of being a long returning member. It's set slightly apart from the others, a little bigger, with a wrap around porch perfect for lounging and a loft just waiting to be filled with giggling cousins who tell secrets after dark. Not exactly roughing it, I know, but still just enough removed from the rest of the world.

The first day we simply settled in, walked along the dock, and enjoyed the peace. Evan took his first trip on the boat to try out his fishing skills and enjoy some quality time with his Gramps. The next day I explored some trails with Teri, his mom, and the kids soaked up Grandma's attention at the cabin, while Ev fished. I started a pair of longies on my size eights in the afternoon, Aidyn learned how to cast his new fishing pole (no hook involved), Ely babied her baby doll with her very own cloth diapers and blankie, and Evan...went fishing. The next day I finished said pair of longies, then took the kids down for some fun on the dock, and Evan, you guessed it, fished. At this point it would seem that our freezer must be overflowing with fish, after all of those outtings, but the truth is the weather, as I've mentioned, was quite dismal the first few days, and the fish simply weren't biting.

The next day, as the weather started to warm, Teri and I continued our routine of a morning walk while the boys headed out once again on the boat and Grandma and Ariel, Evan's little sister, played with the kids. We took a trail we'd never taken before, and caught up in the beauty and the small animals that crossed our path, we soon realized that we'd walked a little too far and were deep in the woods. Not a problem, except that Evan's mom is diabetic, and wasn't carrying anything to revive her flagging blood sugar. We could hear cars, signaling we must be somewhere near the road to the campsite, and so instead of turning back, we trudged onward, knowing that all the trails around eventually led back to the main road. Almost an hour later when we finally hit a road, Teri was a pasty shade of gray and barely moving forward. It wasn't the main road, but we could see it in the distance, and so she trudged on for another quarter mile, which was somewhat near the next camp over, and there, I was forced to leave my pooped out mother in law while I ran the entire way back to our campsite to quickly collect a juice and my van. On the way back I happened to run into the boys just returning, and grabbed Evan with a hurried explanation. Thankfully, Teri had managed to make it the short distance into that campsite, and find a juice there. She was already back to herself when we pulled in. We returned to our cabin and had to make some explanations, as my out of breath ramblings when I rushed in had left everyone a little worried. Once the commotion had calmed down, we decided to drive that trail, to find out how far we had gone. Teri and I had walked just under two and half miles before finding the road, leaving me to run back a little over a mile and half for a total of exactly four miles. We decided that was enough excitement for one trip and stuck to trails we knew after that, although I had to curtail my walking the next day for my sore hips.

The next morning Aidyn decided to help me cast my pole off the dock, and darned if his first little cast didn't catch a fish! His very first one, and he was so proud of himself. We tried to get him to hold it so we could take a picture, but he wouldn't come near it once it was on the stringer, and the picture captures my very ambivelant little boy looking uncertainly at his bass. That same night, Evan took his little sister and I out on the boat. We spent a half hour with no bites and not a whole lot of hope that any fish would even be caught. Evan decided to move the boat, and so we skimmed along into a little cove no one else was at, where we saw tons of perch wallowing on the water, having their fill of bugs. We weren't fishing for perch, but we figured it was as good a spot as any to try, and so out we casted. Two hours later, we roared back towards the dock with self satisfied smiles; our cooler was full to bursting with large green bass, which had been biting left and right all night. The only sore spot on any of our minds, especially Evan's, was the one that got away. Evan had hooked the largest fish of the night, and had a spectacular fight reeling it in. It got stuck in a mess of weeds but Evan reeled and reeled until the boat was right beside it, and then pulled the whole mass up. We could see the big guy right in the middle, still fighting madly and we snapped a picture of the mess, sure no one would believe what a battle this had been when POP! The line snapped, the tangle of weeds and Evan's whopper dropped back into the water, and Evan was left holding a broken line and howling his fury. We made wild grabs for the thrashing ball of weeds, but in vain. Still muttering disbelief, we started casting again. Not even five minutes later, like a monster in a horror movie, Evan's bass surfaced for a moment ten feet away, still covered with strings of weeds and sporting, I'm sure, one of our favorite lures. We trolled the spot over and over, hoping that we be able to grab him back, but he remained submerged; somewhere in that lake a bass swims, a few stringers of weeds still trailing from his fins, a yellow and black spotted lure with two treble hooks hanging from his mouth.

We left the next day, shortly after our breakfast at noon. Evan took one last ride out with Gramps and came back with another cooler of fish, the kids and I explored the dock and snapped a few last pictures, we packed up the Box once more, and then we were back on the ferry skimming toward reality, a little dirtier, sporting a few more tan lines, but replete. What more could one ask for than the chance to get away from it all, the cell phones, the computer, the chores, the errands, the to-dos, and simply enjoy being?
And of course, I'd be remiss to not leave you with photos of our lake adventure. Here's a small sampling of our time there, but you can find the entire set, for your browsing pleasure, here.

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