HoserRacing HalfDork
5/23/23 4:59 p.m.

Ok, heading out on the first family vacation that I've been able to take in the summer in 10+ years.  Flying out with my son & daughter to Seattle on Sunday, then flying home 8 days later.  Wanted to go to Johnston Observatory to see the Mt. St. Helens exhibit after having been there in '82, but apparently the road is closed after a rockslide last week :( Any recommendations?  Also, thinking about taking the kids to Canada, my son is 20, and my daughter is 15.  I tried reading the requirements on the border security website, but it just crossed my eyes.  How hard is it to cross with minors as a single parent?  Thanks!


Karacticus GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
5/23/23 5:23 p.m.

If you can make it work, take the Boeing plant tour in Everett. 

Museum of Flight at Boeing Field in Seattle is also worth a visit

5/23/23 5:35 p.m.

Canada calls for a passport. US calls for passports for all returning citizens. "Enhanced Drivers License" is an option, but I know nothing of those.


Western Canada is awesome.

hunter47 Reader
5/23/23 5:47 p.m.

Canada crossing requires passports. 

They'll ask you the standard questions like "how long are you staying for, why are you coming, will you leave anything in Canada" etc. 

Museum of Flight is a must. 

Check Pacific Raceways schedule, you might be able to catch an SVRA or Pro3 race. 


Marjorie Suddard
Marjorie Suddard General Manager
5/24/23 7:20 a.m.
HoserRacing said:

How hard is it to cross with minors as a single parent?  Thanks!

Not hard--Tim did it with Tom back in the day--but you do need a letter. Details from interwebs: "Furthermore, any minor crossing the U.S. border must present a consent letter signed by both his or her parents. Information on the letter must include the names, contact details and addresses of both parents, along with similar details of the adult in whose care the minor will be in the United States."


Javelin GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/24/23 9:02 a.m.

LeMay America's Car Museum in Tacoma, WA is a great visit (and a bonus, go to the Museum of Glass down the street and watch the glass blowing in person).

Evergreen Aviation Museum in McMinnville, OR is home of the Spruce Goose and is a must for plane lovers. Bonus for the water park next door that has a berking 747 on the roof that you water slide out of. 

If you do Canada, I highly recommend a ferry ride to Victoria over a land crossing to Vancouver. You get to see the glorious Puget Sound and Victoria is such a lovely city to spend some time in. 

HoserRacing HalfDork
5/24/23 9:15 a.m.

Thanks everyone!  I was looking at the ferry ride to Victoria, thought that looked interesting, and I've always heard I need to do Butchart Gardens.  Boeing and the Museum of Flight were already on the list.  A train ride sounds fun too!  Keep the ideas coming!

Slippery GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
5/24/23 9:51 a.m.

Near Seattle

Whole day: Rainier is both a cool place and a very nice drive.

Whole day: North Cascades Ntl Park

Whole day: Go to Leavenworth for a day, take the south route (US90) on the way and the north (2) on the way back. Stop over at the Snoqualmie Falls Hydroelectric Museum, then go have some tacos at Caadxi Oaxaca a few blocks away and keep driving east and stop over at the Franklin Falls and do the mile hike, my kids loved it. Once done with that keep driving to Leavenworth and have dinner there, great bratwurst/icecream and nice little town to visit. The drive is great. The way back is amazing on route 2, it will probably get dark by then.

Two days: probably best to find a place in Port Angeles (I found an airbnb for one night): Olympic National Park is a great places to visit. You have Ruby Beach, Hoh Rain Forrest, Hurricane Ridge


Grab some subs from Sammich Restaurant and head over to the Multnomah Falls, lots of hikes. Keep in mind in order to get into that area by car you need to get a permit, they have time slots, so get an early one. They are limited. Spend time there, then head over to Mt Hood. I am not sure Mt Hood is worth it in itself, but the drive is great. We did a bunch of hikes over at the mountain though so we liked it.


Grouse Mountain. We had the most fun here, awesome place full of activities.

Rent a bike and do Stanley park.

Lynn Canyon Park. Do the hike, its free and in my mind better than Capilano. You have the hanging bridge, the 30 foot pool, etc. Awesome hike

I could go on and on, but I need my wife to refresh some of my memory :D

Note 1: Keep in mind crossing into Canada will take the best part of an hour unless you have NEXUS. They will ask for passport and where you staying/what you are doing. Also keep in mind that the speed limits in the whole PNW are quite low, and people respect them, so drives take time.

Note 2: If you do a couple of parks, its worth it to get the annual national park pass. You can buy it at some of the parks entrances and it will last 13 months. If you have a kid in 4th grade, its free. You can also buy it at the REI Coop store (222 Yale Ave N), as a matter of fact, there is a Park Ranger office there and they can give you a bunch of maps/info and the store is cool.

Slippery GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
5/24/23 9:52 a.m.

IMHO Victoria was not worth it as it sucks up a bunch of time. Just to get to the ferry is a total pita and will take a long time.

HoserRacing HalfDork
5/25/23 5:54 p.m.

Ok, so the Enhanced Driver's licenses work, but I only have Real from Georgia, so that doesn't work for us going to Canada sad Boeing Everett Tours are closed sad Trying to decide between Boeing Future of Flight or the Museum of Flight.  I'm thinking Museum of Flight since that's been mentioned, but double checking for feedback.  Looking at heading to Leavenworth and checking out the Wellington Ghost Town, the hydroelectric museum looks cool.  Space Needle and Pikes Place Market are on the list, driving out to Crater Lake, I've been told I need to drive the 101 from Seaside down to the Dunes, not sure that I'll make it that far, but going to drive it for a little ways at least.  Have to hit Tillamook, just because of the cheese.  Lacey Museum has a Bigfoot exhibit starting Wednesday, so have to hit that as well.  Any thoughts about Underground Seattle?  And hitting Lemay for sure :) 

thatsnowinnebago GRM+ Memberand UberDork
5/25/23 6:59 p.m.

You only need a permit to access Multnomah Falls from the little scenic highway who's name is escaping me. The drive looks pretty but it's just a line of stopped cars whenever I drive past on I-84. There's a big ol parking lot right off the freeway for the falls that doesn't need a permit. You could also stop at the Vista House on your way there or back. It's cool little building up the walls of the gorge a bit with a steller view. 

Wally (Forum Supporter)
Wally (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
5/31/23 1:49 p.m.

The glass museum in Tacoma was a lot if fun. They have a glass blower demo, and a section of sculptures made from kid's art work. The creativity and descriptions were fun to see, as was keeping track of how many could double as adult toys. Maybe leave the kids out of that game.  

HoserRacing HalfDork
6/16/23 9:10 a.m.

Just wanted to say thank you to everyone.  We flew in, hit the Space Needle and Chihulhy Glass museum the first day.  There was an outdoor festival going on, so we wandered around it a little bit,  Hit Pike Place Market, did a Chef's tour, that was pretty cool.  Toured the Museum of Flight, that was so much fun getting to go into all of the planes they had open, including the old Air Force One plane.  We couldn't do the Everett factory tour because it has been shut down until further notice.  After that we went and saw the Fremont Troll.  We did Underground Seattle, the Museum of Pop Culture, Archie McPhee's store for my son, then headed south.  Since the road to the Johnston Observatory was closed, we went to the Mount St. Helen's visitor center, then to the big statue of Bigfoot in Kid Valley, before heading to Portland and the North American Bigfoot Center.  In Portland, I wanted to go visit a customer that I've never met in person, looked up donuts close to me, and found Delicious Donuts.  Holy cow, that was the best blueberry donut I've ever had!  Went over the St. John's bridge, which was a little nervewracking since I'm afraid of heights, but cool as all get out.  Then went to the Pittock mansion, incredible back story and amazing views of Portland.  Multnomah Falls was amazing, loved it, then went to Medford to start the trip to Crater Lake the next day.  Was going to do the Harry & David's tour, but it had been shut down.   Being from Georgia, we hardly see more than an inch or so of snow, so when we got to Crater Lake and there was still 8' of snow in places around the visitor center, the kids loved it!  We didn't get to go to the viewpoint since it was blocked by snow, but went to the lodge and ate, then took some pics.  After I posted them on Facebook, my oldest sister posted up pics of her & my parents there from probably 15 years ago or more, in the same place.  Pretty cool.  We found out that due to the snow, we couldn't go out the north rim exit, so skipped the next part of the trip and started the trip back towards Seattle for the trip home.  Stopped at Evergreen the next day for the museum and saw the Spruce Goose.  Also found out a friend's dad had flown the Boeing that was the top of the waterslide at the waterpark!  Then to Tillamook for the factory tour, followed by a trip to the coast and up to Seaside for supper.  Back to Portland that night, started out at Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, toured the submarine Blueback, then went to Pioneer Square, ate at Rollin' Fresh, stopped at the glass museum in Tacoma on the way back to Seattle, we were late, so just did the bridge and the Chihuly installations there.  Got up the next day and flew home.  Thanks for the help everyone!


iansane GRM+ Memberand Dork
6/16/23 10:29 a.m.

Sounds like a great little snapshot of the northwest. Glad you liked it. Aside from small hole in the walls, everything I would have mentioned has been. Good trip!

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