This is our fifth summer camp hosting on Lopez at Spencer Spit State Park, and as always, when it’s time to leave I feel as though we’ve just arrived. “But wait!” I think. “There’s still so much to do, more time to spend with friends, more music to play, more hikes and kayaking and biking…” It has been a glorious summer.
Lopez captivated us the very first time we visited, and each time we return, we fall in love with the island all over again. I can’t imagine a more idyllic place than Lopez in the summer. The island is only 15 miles long and 8 miles wide, and the village a mere few square blocks, but there’s a richness of spirit and a down-to-earth lifestyle that we find enormously appealing.
Our time on Lopez is made all the richer by the friendships we’ve made—how fortunate we are to have been welcomed into this wonderful community of fun-loving, warm-hearted, and talented friends. Over the years, we’ve enticed many of our Ashland friends to Lopez, which only adds to the fun. And this year, we were fortunate to have LuAnn and Terry (Paint Your Landscape), fellow full-time travelers and friends we met last winter in Anza Borrego, as our co-camp hosts. Our summers on Lopez just keep getting better and better.
I’ve written extensively about Lopez Island in previous posts, so I’ll keep this short. If you’re interested in more details about the island, including our experience as interpretive hosts, check out the following posts:
• Living Local On Lopez Island
• How To Become A Junior Ranger
The photos, however—well, there’s just no way to resist trying to capture the beauty of this special place. Here, my love letter to Lopez, culled from two months of far too many photos:[portfolio_slideshow]
Wow. Your opening paragraph is beyond prose – poetry, I think. And the images! You have just enticed another Ashlander to visit! We are making some upgrades to our VW Westy to allow for more distant adventures, and Lopez Island is going to be one of them. Thanks, as always, for sharing your journey.
Thank you, Dick — that’s a wonderful compliment! We look forward to seeing you next summer on Lopez. You have the perfect vehicle for traveling to the islands.
How neat that you got to spend a month with Terry and LuAnn:) I’m jealous!
Once again you captured the beauty that is calling my name. One day!!
The photos are beautiful but I love that moon rise:) How clever, beach art! So neat.
I would have loved to be there to hear you play, Laurel. A summer with lots of musicians would be so much fun. John is a real music lover.
Another perfect summer:)
It truly was another perfect summer, Pam. It was great to have LuAnn and Terry right next door! Maybe you and John will make it to the islands next year? That would be fun!!
How beautifully written Laurel! You so succinctly describe our feelings about our first visit to Lopez, a very special place. I have already begun to write my post about this island, as I am determined to get caught up on the blog again one day soon. I imagine many of my photos are going to look quite similar. Thanks for making our summer extra-special. :)
LuAnn, it was wonderful sharing Lopez and camp hosting duties with you two. It all just went by far too quickly! It’s not easy to capture the essence of the island in words or photos — I’m glad you enjoyed my attempt. :-)
OMGolly, what gorgeous photos and writing
about the Island that you and Eric love. I hope
someday to visit. Did anyone record you when you
were up playing music? How grand to be able to
travel on and look back at this glorious summer on
Peggy, we would love to show you Lopez! So glad we can share it with you through photos and stories until you see it for yourself. Eric did some recording of our music sessions. It was great fun! oxox
Lucky lucky lucky Terry and LuAnn to have spent the summer on Lopez AND with you two. I’m not the least bit envious as you can see. Your pictures are exquisite. Love the moonrise, love the sea stars, love the rose hips with dew drops. There is not a one I didn’t just love. What a beautifully written and photographed piece about such a fantastic place.
I’m so glad you enjoyed the post, Sherry. Lopez really is as beautiful as I make it out to be — you and David need to come experience the islands!
It’s hard to believe another summer has passed. Looks like you had another very enjoyable time on beautiful Lopez Island. Sharing this adventure with friends, new and old, add to the overall experience.
Ingrid, the summer went by far too quickly, as always! Sharing the experience with friends definitely makes it all the more special.
Wow – wish we were there too!
It is a truly special place, David.
Beautiful! I sure hope that you will still be camp hosting next summer. We need to go back to the islands and spend more time there.
The moonrise photo is the best for me, great capture, Laurel.
Will you be passing by AZ this fall/winter?
I have two birds on my recent post, maybe you can help me identify it.
ML, looks like we’ll be on Lopez again next summer — how fun it would be to have you and Steve visit! We’re soon on our way to Florida for the winter — so yes, passing through AZ. Let’s try to connect!
Yay for Lopez! It misses you. We miss you. Hey–how about that owl picture? Can you post that or send it?
Gretchen, we miss you guys, too. I already can’t wait for next summer and more music adventures with you! The owl pic wasn’t sharp enough for posting, but I’ll send it to you.
Lopez, or should I say SLopez was definitely the island that attracted me most when we were up there last summer. Such a great vibe, and we felt it right away even though we only spent a day there. So glad you had another enjoyable summer, with good friends to boot. Back again next year?
Nina, we thought we would be able to drag ourselves away from Lopez to head up the East coast next year — but not quite yet. So yes, looks like another summer on the island coming up!
Lopez is everything you’ve said in your blog and more because you missed the experience of the perfect hosting and sharing and the gracious companionship on hiking island adventures that you and your male model provide to your off island guests. Thank you for making our summer! Diana
Haha, “male model”! Eric is never going to live that down. There’s no way that I can convey in the blog the incredible friendships and hilarious moments that we share. Love you guys and can’t wait to see you!
Beautifully said and shared, sounds like my kind of place! Love the metal wheels and plow handle, and the guy “walking” his boat :-) The sand star looks like so much fun! We know we’ll be back to the area and won’t miss the islands next time.
Thank you, Jodee — I think it is your kind of place! Although the islands feel far removed from the mainland, they’re only a ferry ride away.
Laurel, your posts always capture my heart and spirit, and stir my soul! Thank you for again sharing another special summer from Lopez Island. I especially love your Magical Moonrise.
Hopefully our seemingly never-ending downsize will finally occur, so we can make it out there someday. And maybe, just maybe, we can finally meet you in Cedar Key, if you’re there in early winter.
Karen, I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. Thank you for your lovely comment. Just keep plugging away on that downsize (I understand the challenge!) — we’ll be in Florida this winter and would love to meet up with you in Cedar Key.
Always wonderful pics and stories. My absolute fav is the rose hip! Hope we see you at Rocky Point?
Happy to know that you’re continuing to journey with us, Sue. :-) Love having company from home. Yes, we’ll be joining in on the fun at Rocky Point! Looking forward to seeing you guys.
It is easy to see why you return to this special place year after year…especially with your daughter and grandson near by.
Lisa, you’re right — Amanda and Findlay are a big draw for us and it’s been wonderful to have them nearby during the summers. We just helped them pack up for a new life adventure in Pullman — now we have new territory to explore!