One year down!  It’s hard to believe we are already celebrating our first anniversary as the new owners of Elk Ridge Campground.  Its been a fabulous year of growth, change, learning new skills and making new friends! Many of you (our faithful followers) have been watching our progress since the beginning, so to celebrate this milestone, rather then recap the last year, I have decided answer one of our most frequently asked questions: our story; how it all began.  More specifically, “how did YOU end up HERE?

So, here we go…….

It all started with Tim’s father (Rich).  He loved the Nile Valley and brought Tim (and his siblings) hunting and camping in the area throughout their childhood.  Residing in this pass today brings back those childhood memories for Tim, but it also serves as a way we honor my late father-in-law.  We lost dad to a heart attack on Jan 1st, 2014, just before our dreams of moving here became a reality.


RIP Dad Hoefer; we miss you!

Ever since I met Tim he talked about wanting to own property on Chinook pass.  And after we started dating (in 2007) we began taking many day trips and weekend getaways to the area.  Tim brought his son on a yearly camping tradition, and some weekends we’d head over the pass for the weekend and bring Tim’s parents with us.

(You might be wondering where we are from….   Yes, we are originally “west-siders”; we come from Tacoma.)

On one of those weekends in fall  of 2013, we were celebrating my birthday and enjoying the local talent of Don Forgey.  That’s the night we met the infamous “Krazy Karl”.  As Karl would say, he and Tim are both “shy” so they hit it off right away.  Karl mentioned he owned Elk Ridge, suggesting we come check his place out.  So we did.

Thereafter, whenever we traveled to the Nile, we stopped in to visit Krazy Karl.  And, once Karl heard about the passing of Tim’s dad in 2014, he invited us to come to Elk Ridge and stay for the weekend.

One weekend turned into another and soon I couldn’t keep Tim away from Elk Ridge!  He spent nearly every weekend throughout the summer and fall with Karl, raking pine needles, talking to campers and helping out, but mostly just getting to know Krazy Karl.

There’s no other way to describe the relationship between Tim and Karl but to say that they’ve adopted one another as father and son.  Certainly no one could replace Dad Hoefer, but Elk Ridge gave Tim a place to grieve, and Karl filled an incredible void.

tim and karl

So, how did we become the new owners of Elk Ridge?  Well that’s a story that only Tim, Karl and the squirrels could tell you.  This picture was taken November 29th, 2014, directly after they signed the paperwork that sealed the deal, and the rest, as they say, is history.

We took over as new owners of Elk Ridge on January 2nd, 2015 and our hope is that, “one year later”, with the help of my dad, Bob, we’ve made:

children smile, parents laugh, couples bond, family memories

and most importantly……

we hope that we’ve made Rich and Karl proud.

Thanks to all of you who help make 2015 so special for us. 🙂

Oh…… and as for Krazy Karl…… he’s enjoying the freedom of retirement!  He’s still around Elk Ridge every now and then so come for a visit in Spring if you want to have a “pork chop” with the Krazy troubadour we call Karl.

9 replies
  1. Kim Graves
    Kim Graves says:

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful story. Our community is fortunate to have you. Congratulations on your one year anniversary at Elk Ridge Campground, and many happy and prosperous years to come. Love having a spa just a few short miles from my house!

    • michelle
      michelle says:

      what a great story!! you have such a way with words. you and Tim have so many talents and have made this place so special to so many people. wishing you many many more wonderful years at Elk Ridge <3

  2. Toni Johnson
    Toni Johnson says:

    Congrats on one year! I can’t believe it’s been a year already! We absolutely live you guys and couldn’t be happier that you’ve taken over Elk Ridge. It’s been so wonderful to watch the transformation. I can’t wait to see what’s ahead for you. I can’t wait to spend time with you guys this spring and summer! Love you both so much♡

  3. Natalie
    Natalie says:

    What a great story. Didn’t know Tim was a woodsy kinda guy. And julie, never could have guessed. I am happy for the both of you. We hopefully will be seeing you two this summer. I will let you know.

  4. Rachelle Bourboulis
    Rachelle Bourboulis says:

    Happy Anniversary! Our family enjoyed our time making memories on your wonderful property and look forward to a future return soon. Can’t wait to see all the amazing improvements and the new addition of the spa. You both are truly a blessing. Keep up the good work!

  5. Heather Decker
    Heather Decker says:

    What a beautiful recap of how you & Tim came to Elkridge. I can definitely say that you’ve succeeded in making people smile! We had one of the best times at your Campground last summer with some good friends (who also had lots of fun too) We left your Campground with the best memories, laughing, cooling off in the river, eating some great food, spending quality time with those we love! Thank you for moving over and making Elkridge such a special place for us all. You & Tim are doing an amazing job! Looking forward to our next visit.
    -Heather Decker

  6. Barbara
    Barbara says:

    Love your story, lived in the Nile most of my life. When I lived up there in the early 60’stages the restaurant was still open. Have you started it back up? Love an miss the pass. And Don Forgey, was a class mate, know his family. I have meat Karl, but probably doesn’t remember me. Was a barte
    nder at the Woodshed in the late 90’s.

  7. Darlene Williams
    Darlene Williams says:

    In July of 2015 we had our family re-union at Elk Ridge Lodge. We had a great time and love Elk Ridge. I think we all agreed, we would love to have our family reunion at Elk Ridge every time we decide to get together. Tim, you made sure we had everything we needed and we had a wonderful time visiting with you. See you again in 2017, if not sooner.

  8. Ashley
    Ashley says:

    April 9th 2016. My Fiancé, my 5 year old son and I discovered Elk Creek on a spontaneous weekend of camping. From the moment we arrive we fell in love with the place and people. Tim and Family were such a genuine people. They went above and beyond to make sure we were comfortable and had everything we needed. It was so beautiful and relaxing that we are now looking into having our wedding there next year.


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