A Moment of Grace in North Cascades: featuring Ovenell’s Heritage Inn in Concrete, WA

Clouds shrouded the base of the mountain and mist hugged the white caps as I entered the farm lane of Ovenell’s Heritage Inn in the North Cascades range of Washington state. The mountains hid just barely as the sun began its brilliant and colorful show of setting. Blues, purples and subtle teals blended stunningly into pinks, oranges and yellows, painting the mountain in a mystical shroud like an artist’s vision.
I drove slow, passing by the laying cattle, thinking about how I’m so grateful to be here now. Months of planning and lead up were followed by years of dreaming of the Pacific Northwest and the mountains and old growth forests. Once the excitement eased, a deep peace settled in my heart and chest as I drove on. I eventually came to a cluster of wood cabins and at the end of the row a sign hung on the door labeled “the Fisherman Cabin.”

The place was still and all was quiet. A few cars littered the other cabins and an empty playground stared at me, and I thought how much fun it would be to bring my little boy Rowan next time I return to Washington. The Fisherman Cabin offered a studio setting with queen bed, 3/4 bath with shower, kitchenette, and a range of amenities like air conditioner, wifi, TV, propane fireplace, outdoor grill and picnic table, and a lovely covered porch with mountain views.

I brought in my luggage and fell onto the bed, as I had been driving seven to eight hours. I meditated awhile before I urged myself to get up. I wandered around the cabin, fiddling around the kitchen, with the AC, and enjoying the tiny home-esque aesthetic. I felt very much at home, and loved every little  I turned on a Netflix show and gathered myself, before showering, and making my way back out to experience the natural beauty of the North Cascades.

A short drive to North Cascades National Park yielded an awesome experience with endless mountain peaks, vibrant blue water that almost seemed photoshopped, a bristling wind that whipped around fields of wildflowers, and a massive expanse of big skies filled with gigantic puffy clouds moving fast and on the move. I drove to the east end of the park, stopping at a myriad of interesting stops and beautiful overlooks, before heading back into the park to hike a few of the trails. One that was very easy, yet filled with history and educational spots was the Trail of the Cedars which brought me great joy, and helped me grasp just how much nature can persevere after a disaster like a wildfire.

The next couple days were filled with rain and moody weather conditions, so I drove a lot, and took it easy, enjoying taking each day slowly, letting myself find peace in meditation. In my busy life as a business owner, photographer, travel writer and father of a two year old, peace and quiet is something that is rumored but rarely found. I found that here in northern Washington, and now that I write this thousands of miles away in my home, I yearn for another chance to taste that sweet fruit.

Thank you Ovenell’s for providing a wonderful place to experience the great outdoors of Washington state. I’ll be back sometime again! To find out more about Ovenell’s Heritage Inn in Concrete, WA, visit their website at www.ovenells-inn.com