the splendid maiden


We drove up the Clackamas River Saturday for our van's maiden outdoor adventure.  It was such a beautiful spring-like day.  We stopped once along the way to climb over the edge of the road and walk down to the river, but then headed deeper into the woods to explore around Indian Henry.  Notice the picture above where Thor looks really little?  That's from this post a couple of years ago, taken in 2006 in exactly the same spot as the photo above it. 

We bought my dad's old work van well over a year ago, so happy to keep her in the family, and intending to make her into a camper of sorts for our day trips and occasional over-night trips.  With our move, overwhelming house/yard projects, etcetera, it has taken a while to get her into shape.  She has served us well in the meantime, basically moving all of our things except the largest items here to Portland.  She has been used by several of my husband's family members for moves or projects as well.  We have definitely loved having her so far. 

With extra space and some nice days, my husband has been working on her again to make her campable.  He's amazing.  He can make or fix anything, I think.  He built a platform bed weekend before last that opens up with enough storage underneath for our packs, camp stove, and any other supplies we might need to take along.  We softened the bed up with comforters and blankets and pillows, and will add sleeping bags when we need to sleep there.  He attached two seats behind the driver and passenger seats from an old sports car he recently sold that can recline almost all the way back.  There's room by those seats for a large cooler for food and drinks.  (I will get some interior pictures to show you when we go camping next.)  We just have to figure out a rack system that works with the sliding side door so we can attach our kayaks to the top.  I can't wait for the family adventures and the memories to be made ~ I have such great memories of trips in our camper when I was little.

Thor thinks the van is just about the best thing ever and wants to take her everywhere now.  I have to agree that she is quite splendid.  Quite splendid, indeed.  
by mlekoshi