Being Resourceful Adds to Life’s Enjoyment

Our white Golden Retriever, McKinley, aka Mac, is a delightful part of our family. He is the essence of pure love and joy. You’ll find him tagging along on some of our video adventures in Clark County, and beyond.

During a stretch of hot weather at the end of summer, Mac didn’t want to stop playing. But, the heat was taking its toll. He found a way to continue  enjoying the day, his way.  It reminded us that being resourceful often adds to our enjoyment of life.

Bravo to Mac, once again.

Filed under: Lifestyle | Mac Moments

We love to hike – the three of us, my husband, Bernie, our dog, Mac, and me.. Right now, the wet weather is keeping us from many of our favorite trails. Muddy, slick, and washed out sections can create treacherous trail conditions this time of year. Spring can’t come soon enough for us

Environmentally Sound Practices Can Extend The Life of Your Access Road

(Continued from Part 1)

Here is a visual comparison – first an improperly maintained road. It’s easy to see where the water will sit and eventually erode through the surface:

Improper Slope

Compared to a properly crowned road:

Proper Crown

If you’re want more on this, check out the EPA’s “Environmentally Sensitive Maintenance For Dirt and Gravel Roads” for comprehensive guidelines.

So, when you are evaluating that beautiful view home in the country, here are some (literally) down to earth tips on the access road:

  1. Pay attention to the current condition of the road – is it relatively smooth and without potholes and standing water?
  2. Does it appear to be regularly maintained? Are side ditches and culverts cleared and not overgrown or clogged?
  3. Who is responsible for maintenance? Is road access shared with others, and is there a road maintenance agreement? Is so, make sure you get a copy and read through it to understand your shared responsibilities.

If you want to learn more about ViewHomes in Clark County and Nature Not Neighbors, contact us at Harcourts USA -The Carl Group.  You can begin your search here.

We specialize in ViewHomes of Clark County™ and our clients share our appreciation for Nature As Neighbors. A private retreat on acreage provides a serene and calm environment, and there’s room to garden, play with kids or grand kids, and enjoy frequent visits from wildlife. Its “Elbow Room for the Soul.™”

Filed under: News

We have come to learn that living out in the country, with Nature As Neighbors, creates a more calming environment. The quote from Lao Tzu reminds us of our own challenges; to slow down our pace and savor the moments. Too often, we rush through our days. Yet, life is not a race. The sounds from the nearby Little Washougal River and the huge fir trees swaying in the winter winds quietly remind us to be more aware, more mindful.

Filed under: Camas | News

“Don’t play too  much golf. Two rounds a day are plenty…” Harry Varden, six-time British Open Champion

There are some good options for golfing enthusiasts in the Camas/Fisher’s Landing area. Green Mountain Golf Course is one of them. The course is located at 2817 NE Ingle Road on the Camas/Vancouver border.

Green Mountain is a good choice for those players who prefer a more relaxed game. It offers people a fun and affordable experience. You’ll see players of all abilities on the course, and that takes a bit of the pressure off while you learn.

The course is located in beautiful tree-lined surroundings with a country atmosphere. Getting a tee time is easy – you can reserve your tee time online (with no booking fees).


Filed under: Lifestyle

Uptown VillageWhile we love living with Nature as Neighbors, and the quiet solitude it provides, some days we just want to go downtown for an urban experience of shopping and strolling. Uptown Village is a wonderful shopping district located on Main Street in Vancouver, WA. Comprising approximately 11 blocks between 15th and 26th St, it bisects a residential neighborhood bordered by Columbia Street to the West and D Street on the East.

A day-long shopping trip along Main Street will take you to an eclectic mix of restaurants, shops, and antique stores, ending at the Clark County Historical Museum. Originally built as a Carnegie Library in 1909, the site houses a permanent collection of native art, historical artifacts from the region, and the largest collection of unpublished Richard Brautigan manuscripts.

Two of our favorite restaurants in the area are in Uptown Village right on Main St – La Bottega, and Charlie’s Bodega.  Owned by the same family, they are a quick study in contrast. La Bottega has an old-world Italian ambiance and menu, and houses a deli complete with Italian meats, cheeses, olives and wine. Charlie’s modern decor is the perfect atmosphere for Spanish tapas (small plates) and a unique whiskey bar with artistically-inspired cocktails.

For a nice break in a walking neighborhood, head over to Uptown Village and enjoy the culture, shopping and restaurants in the area.

Filed under: News

On hot summer days, Klineline Pond is packed with families and children. The pond has observation stations, roped swimming areas, plus the adjacent park features a spray feature. Parents, be sure to take advantage of the lifejacket loaner station to help keep your little ones safe.

Klineline Pond is located in the Salmon Creek Regional Park with 35 acres of developed parkland and 368 acres of undeveloped green space. The Salmon Creek Association Complex, home of the Vancouver Girls Softball Association backs up to the park. There’s plenty of parking too with 186 spaces, plus 4 disabled parking stalls.

Klineline is the only location where Clark County offers lifeguards. However, they remind parents and children, lifeguards are not a panacea.  Park users are urged to follow the buddy system while swimming. And parents with young children, or those who lack strong swimming skills, should be particularly vigilant.

Klineline is open 7am to dusk. Lifeguards are on duty from 11am to 7pm daily, July 1 through Labor day.

Filed under: Lifestyle

There are studies linking our well-being, both physically and mentally to our connection to nature. Gardening, hiking, even a visit to the park, can help restore your peace of mind. We support our many parks and trails in Clark County and consider it money well-spent to support their continued presence in our communities.

One of our many Camas parks is located along NW 6th Avenue. The park is comprised of just over 5 acres and has a baseball field used for Lacamas Little League games. Area families often use the picnic area at Forest Home Park while children enjoy the playground equipment.

A little bit of green space and room to roam is good for what ails ya’. We get it too, that’s why we’re Nature As Neighbors selling ViewHomes of Clark County with Elbow Room for the Soul!

Filed under: Forest Home

The 78th Street Heritage Farm is located at 1919 NE 78th Street the northern part of Vancouver, called Hazel Dell. The 79 acre site has a rich history in farming and agricultural research. In 2010, the farm was approved to be maintained as an accessible, agricultural, education, recreational, community-based asset. Whew, that’s a mouthful.

Washougal Motocross Park in Washougal is pretty well-known in the pro-racing circuits. On July 23, 2016, the park will host the Washougal National. The legendary race marks Round 9 of the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship, sanctioned by AMA Pro-Racing.

The track itself is located in the scenic foothills above the Washougal River. It sits amid a forest of towering fir trees. Some say it’s one of the most beautiful Motocross parks in the world. It is also within hearing distance of many homes. Some of those owners have had an on-going battle with the track over the noise created during the events.

However, I’m not taking a political viewpoint on this one. Be forewarned, if you buy property along the Washougal River Road, prepare to have slow traffic when the track hosts races. In addition, some neighborhoods, such Bear Prairie, are impacted with noise from the park.

To me, knowledge is power, if noise bugs you, buy elsewhere. Some folks choose to live in the area as they have children who participate in the sport, and in the races. Remember, one man’s paradise may be another man’s hell.

We can all agree the Washougal Motocross Park has certainly put Washougal and Camas on the map for a lot of families who love the sport of Motocross Racing.

There are many studies linking our wellbeing, both physically and mentally to our connection to nature. Gardening, hiking, even a visit to the park, can help restore your peace of mind. We support our many parks and trails in Clark County and consider it money well-spent to support their continued presence in our communities.

Rivercrest Estates Homeowners Association is comprised of 94 custom homes with views of the Columbia River, Mt. Hood, and Portland city lights. The neighborhood is located off of the East Old Evergreen Highway in Vancouver, WA.

Annual dues for the neighborhood are $100 with a one time fee to join of $500, which is collected at escrow. The HOA was established as a non-profit in 1989 with CC&R’s ( covenants, conditions, and restrictions) and by-laws put in place by the developer.

Anyone considering purchasing a ViewHome™ in Rivercrest Estates should request a copy of the CC&R’s to ensure you can live within those guidelines.

Filed under: News

We realize most books are accessible with our smart devices, but both of us are big fans of good old-fashioned books and libraries. Libraries continue to be a great resource in our communities, and Cascade Park Community Library is no exception.

Filed under: News

As one might guess from the name, this lovely neighborhood is nestled on the banks of the Columbia River. Residents in Rivershore see plenty of area wildlife including, eagles, osprey, heron, and occasionally a jumping salmon.

Residents of Rivershore also enjoy tideland rights and the ever-changing views of the river, Mt. Hood, and city lights. Most of the homes are built to ensure privacy and take advantage of the fabulous views, as well as the frequent, stunning sunrise and sunsets.

If you’re interesting in taking a look at ViewHomes of Rivershore Landing, call us today. Nature As Neighbors is a great choice.

Filed under: News

If you’ve lived in the Pacific Northwest for any time at all, you’ll recognize the name McCuddy’s. It’s a prominent name in our region associated with 60 years of boating experience and services.

McCuddy’s Steamboat Landing Marina has 150 floating concrete boat slips in sizes ranging from 24′ to 40′. All of the slips have electric and water hook-ups. Other handy amenities include a free self-service pump-out stations, fish cleaning station, dock boxes, restrooms, free wifi, and free vehicle parking.

The Marina is located within the gated community called Steamboat Landing. It’s accessed by key cards provided when you rent a slip. Slips can be rented on a daily or monthly basis. The marina is on the banks of the Columbia River across from Government Island State Park.

If you’re looking for a ViewHome in the area with Nature As Neighbors, contact us today. Or take a look at what’s available today. We understand that true luxury is having “Elbow Room for the Soul.” ™

Filed under: Lifestyle

The name Prune Hill might sound a bit odd to you, and while the name is peculiar, once you learn its rich local history, it will make more sense.  Prune Hill in Camas, Washington is actually the cinder cone of an extinct volcano and was once home to a major agricultural product. 

As the name implies, at one time, Prune Hill was planted with many prune orchards, beginning with the largest, which was planted in the 1880‘a by a man named Mr. Boyer.  According to the Camas – Washougal Historical Society, many other settlers after Boyer also planted Prune orchards, and at one time Clark County was known as the prune capitol of the world.

Sadly, the depression was the beginning of the end for that status. As once the market for prunes collapsed, most of the trees were put to better use – as firewood. For quite a few years, most of Prune Hill remained forested with only a few scattered residences.  But in 1971, with the addition of two new water reservoirs and sewer improvements, Prune Hill finally became “the place to live in Camas Washington.”

Today, the Prune Hill neighborhood remains one of the most desirable of addresses in Camas, and perhaps in all of Clark County. After all, it’s close and easy proximity to I-205, Portland and the airport, make it a great choice for business people. And given it’s access to the Columbia River Gorge and recreation, it’s a popular choice for active families.

Today there are a few remaining Prune trees left, most notably a stand near Forest Home Road and NW Astor. But if you’re looking for a home in Clark County, especially a home that offers you outstanding views of the Columbia River, Mt. Hood or Portland’s city lights, there’s no better place to live than Prune Hill in Camas, Washington. If you’re interested in Finding (or Selling ) your ViewHome in Camas, contact us today. Or begin your research here. 


Filed under: Camas | News

Our ViewHome™ of Clark County sits on an acre above the hills of Camas and Washougal. We are right on the line between the two towns, near the Little Washougal River, but still have a Camas address. Services, such as gas and groceries are about 15 minutes away. That’s why we’re all grateful for the Fern Prairie Market.

The little country store is a handy spot for those of us who live in the rural areas known as Fern Prairie, Fern Prairie Valley, Livingston Mountain and Stauffer Road. The clerks are all extremely friendly and they have everything you might need in a pinch. They even have several gas pumps and sell propane. Their deli items are extremely popular with those looking for a quick snack or lunch.

During the recent record Powerball Lottery drawing, people were lined up in droves to get tickets. It was fun to listen to the different stories as to how they were going to spend their vast millions. People giggled and wished one another good luck as they left the store.

We are grateful to live on acreage with Nature As Neighbors and the luxury of “Elbow Room for the Soul.” We’re also grateful for friendly people and the Fern Prairie Market.

Filed under: Fern Prairie | Lifestyle

The Pleasure of Living With Nature As Neighbors On The Washougal River

If you are looking for a home with some acreage, and a view, you should consider homes on the Washougal River, Clark County, WA.

Washougal River Rescaled

The topography of this region is defined by the foothills of the Cascade Mountains to the East and the Columbia River Gorge to the South. Rolling hillsides – offering territorial views – rise up to dramatic vantage points of Mt. Hood and the Columbia River. The Washougal River is an especially prized waterway for recreation, boating, fishing, and peaceful living. Combine the luxury of privacy with the diversity of views, and you have a very popular area for homesites. Washougal River includes the highly desirable Camas and Washougal School Districts.

ViewHomes of Washougal River               

We specialize in ViewHomes of Clark County and our clients share our appreciation for Nature As Neighbors. A private retreat on acreage provides a serene and calm environment, and there’s room to garden, play with kids or  grand kids, and enjoy frequent visits from wildlife. Its “elbow room for the soul.™”

Here is a quick market summary of view homes on the Washougal River with acreage:

8 Active listings from $335,000 to $1,399,000
Average Square Footage: $2,954
Average $/SqFt: 228
2 Sold in last 6 months: $495,000 and $667,000
Average Square Footage: 3,825
Average $/SqFt: 152

Point of Interest!

Dougan Falls is a major waterfall along the Washougal River. It rushes down 19 feet into a narrow trough, then widens out into a massive deep pool. This location is ideal for swimming on a hot summer day, if you get there early – parking is tight. Picnic tables and toilets are provided in the day use area. Great place to bring kids for a picnic or day outing. Often, when the water is high enough, you will see kayakers enjoying the thrill of running the falls. Note: Washington State Discover Pass is required, unless it’s a free day.

If you want to learn more about ViewHomes on the Washougal River and Nature As Neighbors, contact us a Harcourts USA -The Carl Group.  You can begin your search here.

When we’re on a tour with buyers, or listing a client’s ViewHome in the Felida area, we often stop in at Farrar’s Bistro.  It has comfortable and friendly atmosphere, plus the owner, Deb Belden, is committed to using fresh, high quality ingredients from local vendors. You won’t find any boxes or cans in her kitchen!

Nearly everything served at Farrar’s Bistro is prepared in-house; sauces, rubs, dressings, and meats are smoked on-site. For lunch, we often enjoy a fresh grilled fish taco, or the soup of the day and a fresh salad.

During the spring, summer, and fall months patrons have a choice of dining al fresco on the patio. It’s a popular indoor/outdoor venue for happy hour too. Happy hour specials are served daily from 3:30 to 6:00pm and 8:30 to 10:30pm.

Farrar’s is a true neighborhood Bistro open 6 days a week. Deb also offers catering services for private parties throughout Clark County. We appreciate that Deb gives back to the community whenever possible. Farrar’s is a generous support of many local organizations.

Filed under: Felida | Lifestyle

The 2016 Seed Swap and Giveaway takes place on Sunday, January 31at the Old School House at 24309 NE 209th Street in Battleground. The annual event is sponsored by the Verersborg Community Club.

Gardeners and wanna-be gardeners, soon we’ll be digging in the warm soil again. Thanks to a few generous people there will again be a wide selection with many varieties at the Seed Swap and Giveaway. Organizers encourage you to bring your own extras to give away.

Flowers, veggies, herbs, ornamentals and edibles, oh my! Many are local saved seeds, non-gmo, heirloom and more. Last year’s bounty included basil, beans, beets, borage, broccoli, calendula, cauliflower, cabbage, cucumber, dill, fennel, kale, lettuce, marigold, melons, nasturtium, nigella, onion, parsley, peas, peppers, poppies, pumpkins, radish, squash, sunflowers, swiss chard, tomatoes, and zinnias.

Last year,  people also swapped or donated  house plants, canna lily bulbs, garlic, horseradish, iris rhizomes and garden related items to share.

Don’t have seeds to share? No problem! Bring something for the very informal soup/snack potluck or a non-perishable item for the North County Community Food Bank. Volunteers are also welcome to help set-up/clean-up.

We both appreciate gardening and having enough land for “Elbow Room for the Soul.” If you’d like to find a ViewHome in Venersborg, with Nature As Neighbors call us today.

Filed under: Events | News

The Tulips will be blooming soon…

In mid-January, our thoughts often turn to Spring. Soon, we’ll see crocus and other early spring bulbs start poking through the earth. Once that happens, it doesn’t take long for the barren landscape to come alive with color.

Spring will be official when the Woodland, WA and the annual Tulip Festival gets underway on April 9th.This year’s 5K run/walk among the flowers is on April 2. The Tulip Trot starts at 9AM and is described as a family-friendly event. Although, awards will be given to the top 3 overall male and female runners. Plus all runners will go home with a bouquet of fresh tulips.

More about the Tulip Festival in Woodland, Washington

The Dobbe family emigrated from The Netherlands in 1979 with a big dream and a history of successful spring bulb farming. 35 years later, Benno Dobbe is the CEO of Holland America Bulb Farm and its sister corporations.

The annual Tulip Festival is the Dobbe family’s way of sharing their love of the craft of bulb and flower husbandry and a way to support and promote of the city of Woodland.It’s no wonder he was selected as Citizen of the Year by the Woodland Chamber of Commerce.

There’s also a gift shop open on the weekends with cut flowers, potted spring flowers, gifts and of course, bulbs.Woodland is just a 30 minute drive north of the Interstate – 5 Bridge between Portland and Vancouver.  When these fields are in bloom, you’ll get a taste of Holland, without the international travel.

If you’re interesting in finding a ViewHome in Woodland WA, with Nature As Neighbors – call us today. We know the joy of having “Elbow Room for the Soul.”

Filed under: Events | Nature

The Pleasure of Living With Nature As Neighbors in Livingston Mountain

If you are looking for a home with some acreage, and a view, you should consider homes in Livingston Mountain, Clark County, WA.

Livingston Mountain View

The topography of this region is defined by the foothills of the Cascade Mountains to the East and the Columbia River Gorge to the South. Rolling hillsides – offering territorial views – rise up to dramatic vantage points of Mt. Hood, St. Helens, and the Columbia River. Combine the luxury of privacy with the diversity of views, and you have a very popular area for homesites.  Livingston Mountain is in the highly desirable Camas School District.

ViewHomes of Livingston Mountain                                    

We specialize in ViewHomes of Clark County and our clients share our appreciation for Nature As Neighbors. A private retreat on acreage provides a serene and calm environment, and there’s room to garden, play with kids or  grand kids, and enjoy frequent visits from wildlife. Its “elbow room for the soul.™”

Here is a quick market summary of ViewHomes in Livingston Mountain with acreage:

2 Active Listings for $2,500,000 with 7,261 SqFt on 40 acres, and $1,795,000 with 8,840 SqFt on 6.6 acres.  Each is a custom luxury home with privacy and magnificent views.

4 Sold in the past 6 months ranging from $490,000 to $1,200,000.  Average SqFt was 5,900, and Average $/SqFt was $130. Average Sale Price was $764,875 (Clark County average for 2015 was $298,300.) 

Point of Interest! Neighbors and visitors enjoy the convenience of the Fern Prairie Market, at 1817 NE 267th Ave.  It is not just a gas station/convenience store, but a miniature supermarket with fresh produce, meats, staples, staples, and frozen foods (with an extensive pizza selection!) Their deli counter also offers fresh custom-made sandwiches, including breakfast sandwiches.

If you want to learn more about ViewHomes in Livingston Mountain and Nature As Neighbors, contact us a Harcourts USA -The Carl Group.  You can begin your search here.

Filed under: Camas | News

“in the end, we conserve only what we love. We will love only what we understand. We will understand what we are taught.”   – Baba Dioum, Senegalese conservationist and poet. 

We both greatly appreciate Columbia Springs Environmental Education Center for its efforts in connecting people to nature. The facility gives visitors 100 acres of urban natural area to explore. It’s located on the north side of the Old Evergreen Highway, just east of the i-205 bridge.

Since its conception in 1997, Columbia Springs has provided over 100,000 childrena nd adults with the opportunity to get outdoors and learn  morea bout the natural world through field studies, workshops, service learning projects, summer day camps, community events and more.

One of our favorite spots to visit at the facility is the Historic Vancouver Trout Hatchery. Each year the hatchery raises approximately 70,000 half pound Rainbow trout and 20,000 half pound Brown trout. An abundance of icy cold water from the natural springs is perfect for the hatchery’s operation.

Watch a kingfisher dive for dinner. Listen to blackbirds in the cattails. Throw some fish chow to the trout. Explore a green gem in the city. Columbia Springs is a true gift for our community. Getting outside and connecting with each other, our community, and nature is good for the soul. We’ll see you at Columbia Springs.

Filed under: Nature

As an EcoBroker, I can show you how to live in a more beautiful, comfortable and healthier environment, and save you money! Living in harmony with nature makes good sense. We specialize in Eco-friendly family and multigenerational estates – with “elbow room for the soul.” ™

Fort Vancouver gives us a fun and informative glimpse into our rich history. It’s worth a visit and you’ll find special events year round. Your kids won’t even know they’re learning!

Filed under: Events | Views

Mt. St. Helens is a familiar and iconic landmark to those us of who live in Clark County, Washington. Our family spent many summer hours fishing and camping at Spirit Lake. We even got to meet the local folk-hero, Harry Truman, who refused to leave his home despite repeated warnings. He died, along with 56 others, when the volcano erupted on May 18, 1980.

Filed under: Nature | Views

We admit to being crazy about our White Golden Retriever, McKinley. Mac is well-loved and accompanies us most everywhere, except when we tour ViewHomes of Clark County. He’s really taken to our new lifestyle and enjoys having Nature As Neighbors. When he runs through the woods with wild abandon, his huge smile tells us he loves having  “Elbow Room for the Soul.”  On a recent day, he sat in silence guarding the woodpile. Perhaps, he enjoys a cozy fire as much as we do.

Filed under: Lifestyle

The Little Washougal River is one of our favorite neighborhood treats. It’s located a few steps from our ViewHome™ in Camas. On clear, winter days we can see a part of the river sparkle through the tall pine trees on our front property line. It makes us nearly giddy, as both of us treasure the energy of moving water.

You can help plant habitat to help the endangered Columbian white-tailed deer on Saturday, January 23. Organizers at the Ridgefield Wildlife Refuge are asking all volunteers to register for the event by calling 360-887-3883. They also remind you to wear waterproof footwear, bring gloves, and dress for the weather.

Filed under: Events | Nature