Archive for Washington

How do you pronounce Spokane?

Spo-can or spo-cane?

It’s Spo-can.

I had heard a lot of nice things about Spokane so was eager to explore the town. It was just ok. The population is around 200k and it seemed like any other “bigger” city. Same buildings in the downtown area as elsewhere.

The Spokane River does go thru town (with a trail) and that was nice but the river itself was just ok. I had thought we’d spend at least 1.5 days there but instead we were there for just a few hours.

They do have Carnival Rides in a downtown park. For grins, we thought we’d ride the Ferris Wheel, but it would end up costing us $8 to ride! NO thanks.

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Lewiston, ID and Clarkston, WA

The Snake River separates Washington and Idaho.  The two sister cities across the river from each other are Lewiston, ID and Clarkston, WA.  Obviously named after Lewis and Clark [Lewiston is home to Lewis-Clark State College]. Lewiston is the larger and older of the two cities.

Fun fact for Clarkston: Clarkston has the highest zip code [99403], of any city in the contiguous US.

Fun fact for Lewiston:  Lewiston is reachable by some ocean-going vessels, 465 river miles from the Pacific Ocean/mouth of the Columbia River at Astoria, Oregon! This is due to dams on the Snake and Columbia Rivers.  Lewiston has the distinction of being the farthest inland port east of the west coast.  Barges of timber products, grain, and other goods are shipped via the Snake-Columbia system to the Pacific Ocean.

There are several outfitters in Lewiston that offer jet boat rides/tour of Hells Canyon/Snake River. The cost is $95 for 4 hours or $175 for all day.

Hells Canyon is a 10 mile wide canyon located along the border of eastern Oregon and western Idaho.  It is North America’s deepest river gorge at 8,000’.

We were going to go on one of these, but then went on YouTube to look at videos and it wasn’t what either of us were visually thinking of. I was thinking there would be incredibly high walled cliffs on both sides of the river… as though going thru a valley. Instead, what we saw were videos of a river with rolling baby mountains on each side. Pretty but NOT spectacular and unique. Thus we passed on the jet ride.

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Spectacular 198′ Palouse Falls – SE Washington

Palouse Falls not to be missed. Spectacular 198′ falls.

The Falls lies on the Palouse River, about 4 mi upstream of the confluence with the Snake River in southeast Washington, near Starbuck.

Now check out the beautiful view of the Palouse River downstream of the Falls:

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Snake River Bridge – Washington

The Snake River Bridge is located at the confluence of the Snake and Palouse Rivers, near Starbuck, Washington. It is the oldest steel cantilever bridge in Washington, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

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Amber Waves of Grain [SE Washington]

I’ve now seen the amber waves of grain, from Walla Walla to Lewiston [southeastern Washington]. Rolling wheat fields of various shades of golden yellow for as far as you can see. Really pretty.

And then I saw amber stripes of grain:

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Walla Walla Sweets – The Fighting Onions?

While walking around downtown Walla Walla, I saw a poster for the Walla Walla Sweets, which is the local baseball team. The Fighting Onions? Goofy, but I really like the Grinch looking logo.

NOTE: this name is NOT so far-fetched since Walla Walla is known for their sweet onions.

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Walla Walla, WA – The Land of Wineries and Onions

As we meandered to Glacier National Park, we decided to stop in Walla Walla, a town that was on Ralph’s short list of moving to [from Florida].

Walla Walla is known for its sweet onions, and for its wineries – there are more than 90 vineyards in the area.

Walking the cute 3 or 4 block downtown I must have seen at least 10 wine tasting stores. A couple of times there were two right next to each other! Downtown was very active Saturday night and Sunday morning.

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Memorial to Fishermen in Gig Harbor, WA

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Olympia, WA

We passed on thru Olympia last week.  Here are a few pretty photos of the town.

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Olympic Discovery Trail

While in Sequim, we had a chance encounter with a local cyclist who told us about the Olympic Discovery Trail , which is a 17 mile cycling/walking “rails to trails” path between Sequim and Port Angeles, WA.

We decided to check it out.  We left Sequim and cycled the 17 miles to Port Angeles, had lunch and hung out at the coffee shoppe, and then cycled back.  I had a blast!  The ride was great.  Mostly flat, but several areas with steep hills.  The path winded over covered bridges, along the water of the Straight of Juan de Fuca, thru forests, next to ranches and farms …

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