Camping at Fay Bainbridge

Friday night camping! I like doing a one night on Friday that way we can have a Sunday at home to get ready for the week.

Mike took a few things in his bag to work while I schlepped the rest of the gear later to meet him.

Of course there were some pre-camping injuries. Baby H took a nose dive off the back step while rock hunting and face planted on a pokey part of the bike trailer. Once he was on the mend I slipped off the same step and took a gash out of my shin while trying to run sunscreen onto his face. So a black eye for the baby and a golf ball sized bloody lump for me. Off to a great start!

We headed out early because H needed a nap and I knew he’d fall asleep in the trailer. I also thought I’d be going slow with so much weight. But we got to our meeting point at Diamond Marina 30 minutes early so hung in the shade & played “catch” until Mike arrived.

And then we were off! Mike had never ridden downtown! So a Friday at rush hour was a treat! Only 3 cars parked in the 2nd Ave protected bike lane (all 3 of them immediately adjacent to empty loading zones). And then boom! At the ferry! They changed the bike entrance again (it looks to be permanent) so that you don’t ride in through the main entrance with cars, but enter from the sidewalk. According to the internet the price for people biking should be $9.35 ($8.35 fare + $1 bike) but the ORCA reader in the bike lane only ever charges me the $8.35 so I won’t argue with it.

The ferry was packed! Upon arrival a motorcyclist has somehow snuck up to the front & revved his engine as we waited to disembark. No one was pleased. The ferry worker prevented him from riding off with us. But the motorcyclists followed closely behind & enjoyed splitting the lane with us. I uhhh did not.

And at the top of the hill that no longer seemed quite so hilly, was the new trail! It was open! Of course it was up a steep incline from the road because the people who design bike trails never seem to think about what it would be to ride them. But it’s shaded & much nicer than the highway shoulder. It ended at the Walgreens which was perfect since we had to run in for beer and extra sunscreen. And the shoulder wasn’t bad riding as traffic was light and there wasn’t much debris.

Plus it seemed so quick! The first time we came to Fay it felt like we were riding FOREVER AND EVER AND EVER. But soon enough we turned off the highway and passed Frog Rock. The last hills were hard but we made it! I didn’t even have to walk so I’ll count it as a big win!

We got there after 6 (5:45 ferry) and the kayak in site was free so we camped there. The cost is the same so we paid for 2 and bought wood. I love that you can use your card but it’s annoying that each thing has to be a separate transaction.

Baby and I hung on the beach while Mike set up camp. He seemed to like the sand and way enjoying rubbing it into my body. So exfoliating. For dinner we had a meat, cheese, and cracker spread. Then we gave up on trying to put H to bed, made a fire and started roasting marshmallows for s’mores.

Around 9:30 a group of 6-8 people biking rolled up to the empty (but reserved spot) next to us. We let them know they could camp in the kayak section. But then the host came over & told them no, they need to squeeze into the (already full) hiker/biker section on the other end of the park. One of them asked if he thought more kayakers were coming in since it was dark and he said the city wants the spots open. It was so weird! I’m going to send an email. I’ve gotten a very bike unfriendly vibe there before and this just adds to it.

The next morning we ate bread and jam for breakfast. I tested out my Esbit Pocket Stove that I’ve had for years but never used. But it turns out that I didn’t put the second cube in quite right and it fell through onto the table and caught the wood in fire! Oops! We got it out but it left a small char mark. It turns out that 2 fuel tabs wasn’t quite enough to boil water for coffee so I doubt I’d use it again for anything short of an emergency.

After eating we walked a sleepy baby along the water, watching some playful otters and squirty clams. I collected a few fun shaped rocks for baby. Then we sat in the Adirondack chairs on the beach and slipped on some can wine while he napped.

H was uninterested in more sand play so we decided to pack up and head out a bit earlier than planned. With a quick stop at Frog Rock we were early for the 1:20 ferry so we stopped at Walgreens for some supplies. Did I mention that I got my first postpartum period on this trip? Amenorrhea we had a good run.

The ferry wasn’t crowded, just a few lycra brahs and us. The lycra brahs were rude but it’s what I expected so at least I wasn’t disappointed. The ride home was uneventful save for the whole blood gushing down my legs every time I stood up to get a drink of water thing. RIP favorite jean shorts.

I feel like we overpacked, but I don’t know what we really could’ve left at home. Food maybe, but I didn’t want to run out. A hungry baby is not a fun baby. We didn’t really use the sunshack but Fay is so open with no shade so I wanted to be prepared in case we stayed to play at the beach. We probably could’ve left some baby clothes at home since I don’t care if his clothes are dirty.

All in all a successful camping trip!

2 thoughts on “Camping at Fay Bainbridge

  1. Yay!🙌 So ironic to read this post right now on the train, because right now I am heading there! (Or maybe Kitsap if I feel inspired.) Sorry to hear about the anti-bike attitude from the host, though.


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