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Connect with Nature along the Red Rooster Route

| 05/20/2016 | Blog, Fall, Family Road Trip, Farms & Barns, Snohomish River Valley, Spring, Stevens Pass Greenway, Summer, Winter

To get away from city life on a weekend, my family indulges in road trips - known as "Mom's Adventures" - to explore new things. While we often think as the state parks and national forests as those outdoor escapes, a journey to local farms can provide a fresh perspective. 

From the North Cascade Highway, between Concrete and Corkindale, we turned onto State Route 530 for an overnight detour to uncover different opportunities to connect with nature. 

As we headed west taking in the scenic views of the Sauk river, we came to Darrington. We stopped in at the Hometown Bakery Cafe in Darrington for some steaming hot coffee and oven-fresh cinnamon rolls that looked too good to pass up (and delivered!). 

We continued west on SR 530, and were surprised to discover the Outback Kangaroo Farm. We took the tour, and were very pleased to learn that the farm also features lemurs, wallabies, alpacas, pygmy goats, peacocks, and tortoises, among other animals. We marveled at our ability to get up close and personal with many of these creatures as we fed and petted them. The topper of the visit was getting to hold an albino baby wallaby. 

From there, we headed to downtown Arlington to walk through the Farmers Market, which is open each Saturday. As my kids rushed off, eager to spend a couple dollars on honey sticks and the palate-tempting food that was already calling to them, my husband and I leisurely strolled the market to uncover gifts from local artisans and crafters for some upcoming family birthdays. 

We continued our venture throughout the afternoon by meandering the Red Rooster Route along SR 530, stopping in at various farms to get hands-on by picking berries, purchase plants for our own garden, pet shy spring lambs, be inspired by organic farming methods, snack on farm treats, explore shops, and learn about the history of these sprawling farms. 

To end our days adventures before tucking in for the night, we headed to the Rhodes River Ranch for dinner. This was so much more than a dining experience! The rustic charm of the ranch gave way to an impressive dining facility that overlooks an indoor equestrian arena. We enjoyed an exciting horsemanship show during dinner, followed by live music. 

Thankfully, our overnight accommodations weren't too far away. Our family of five tucked in at Elleries River Cottages, which overlooks the peaceful Stillaguamish River. Nature has a way of helping us naturally relax, because in no time we were all soundly asleep. 

On Sunday morning, we woke up refreshed and ready to continue on our journey. We stopped in at the General Store in Oso to fill up the gas tank, as well as stock up on some snacks for our drive home. The store boasted a thrilling nostalgic ambience, which we soaked in as we filled up on coffee, penny candy, and hearty snacks. Sated from the great food and the relaxing down-home atmosphere, we journeyed west to once again connect with the Cascade Loop at Interstate 5, and all agreed that this was a weekend wed like to repeat.

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