Work Camping with Us

Work Camping is an opportunity for those who have RV's and campers to volunteer in exchange for an RV site.

We have workcamper positions open year round at both the Westport Maritime Museum and the Grays Harbor Lighthouse. Our workcampers volunteer for 20-24 hours per week, depending on the season, in exchange for a full hookup RV site.

 

Westport is a quiet fishing town that offers miles of beaches down the coast and amenities like grocery store, drug store, gas stations, restaurants, laundry mat, post office, shops, city parks, state parks, fishing, crabbing, clamming, and beachcombing. There are larger cities nearby that provide even more shopping, restaurants and activities. There are also unending possibilities for day and overnight trips up the Washington coast to La Push, Olympic National Park or down the Washington coast to Long Beach and Oregon. 

Most people imagine our weather to be more severe than it is. In my opinion Westport has great weather, not too hot in the summer, not too cold in the winter. It rains more in the winter, but not as much as you'd expect and we rarely get snow. Normally it snows once during the winter and the next day you'd never know that it had snowed the day before.

Please contact Julie, our Operations Manager, at juliesmith.wsbhs@gmail.com for more information about our worcamper program.

The following was written by one of our current workcampers, Levi Henley. He and his wife arrived the end of December 2020, they were to start their position at the beginning of the year and would be staying through April. On their first day of work they asked if they could stay until Labor Day because they loved the area.  

 

                            Traveling Through but Staying Awhile 

                                                                         By: Levi Henley

My name is Levi, and my wife is Natalie. We live a somewhat unconventional life for our age. For the last six years, we have traveled around the country in a 26-foot motorhome. Our journey has taken us through 36 states, and it all started with Washington State. 

Before taking off on the open road, we researched ways to make money on our travels and came across the term "workamping." RV parks, museums, Christmas tree lots, Amazon, the farming industry, and many other businesses nationwide hire RVers for temporary work.

 We have made our living for the last six years and paid for our travels with seasonal workamping. Interested? We have a website talking about our travels, HenleysHappyTrails.com. We have also written a book about workamping called Seasonal Workamping for A Living: How We Did It, available on Amazon.

Our Early Adventures in Westport

Earlier last year, we learned about a workamping opening at Grays Harbor Lighthouse and Westport Maritime Museum. We were ecstatic when we learned that we would begin the following year in January.

 We didn't know what to expect about Westport, but in just the handful of weeks Natalie and I have been here, we've fallen for this little town. It's bursting with so much personality and activity, even amid a pandemic.

The Lighthouse and Museum

 Grays Harbor Lighthouse offers the most spectacular panoramic views of the town, surrounding forests, beaches, and beyond. When we first climbed the historical spiral staircase, we imagined what it must have been like for the lighthouse keeper to make that journey daily to keep the beacon lit.

Our workamping position mainly surrounds helping visitors at the Westport Maritime Museum and assisting with various projects. We enjoy volunteering at the museum, meeting folks from all over, and sharing stories about Westport's past.

 Visitors can learn about local history and view the museum's unique displays.  These halls were once filled with brave Coast Guard members ready to rescue those unfortunate enough to catch the sea on a bad day.

The Beach

Since we rolled into town at the end of 2020, we could catch the tail end of King Tide season. The beach is ever-changing, more so during this time when the ocean is at its extreme. Driftwood litters the sand one day, only to be washed away, leaving almost a clean slate another. 

Long walks on the beach are one thing, but beachcombing is a whole different experience, we have learned from the locals. Treasures abound.

On days when the ocean seems at its "angriest," we opt for a walk, jog, or bike down the scenic Westport Light Trail. It passes through a couple state parks, Coast Guard tower, and pedestrian observation tower before heading downtown.

The Food

Arriving in any place in the middle of Covid is not fun. But still, with restaurants offering takeout, we were able to sample some of the food in town. Although we can't make up our mind on which restaurant makes the best clam chowder, we do think it is a must to try the Blue Buoy's Breakfast Dungeness Crab Omelet at least once. Further, into town, El Rancho cooks up authentic, savory Mexican-style dishes.

But a stay in Westport is not complete without purchasing the daily catch at the docks. Depending on the season, tuna, crab, salmon, halibut, oysters, and much more are kept on ice, ready to be sautéed, baked, boiled, grilled, or fried. I absolutely love cooking and trying new dishes, so shopping local and fresh at the docks has become one of my favorite things to do in town.

Much More to Explore

There is still so much to experience in Westport and surrounding areas. We have barely scratched the surface. We look forward to exploring more of Westport throughout the months and seasons and hope to meet more folks around town. Perhaps we'll see you at the museum!

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