Monday, October 15, 2012

Recent Travels

I realized that I haven't filled you in on some mountain travels we have had over the past couple of months. While I'm gathering up photos to show you how the Fair Isle is progressing, have a look at some gorgeous views! 
In August we enjoyed a perfectly sunny Saturday hiking the Skyline Loop trail at Paradise with up close views of Mt Rainier. I just love all the wildflowers there.
In late September we spent a couple of days doing most of the Cascade Loop Highway and stayed over in Winthrop with views of the North Cascades. They have lots and lots of rocks over there!
Some of you know that Winthrop is a little Western town--so cute! 
This was our hotel beside the Methow River, Hotel Rio Vista. 

Then just this past weekend we headed down to a little town called Lyle, WA, where we took a left and wound our way up into the High Prairie region to stay in a yurt--a first for me! The yurt had a great view of Mt Hood across the Columbia River. 
We saw her at sunset...

...and shrouded by clouds the next day. 

This little wood stove kept us comfy warm in the yurt, despite some wind and rain and a considerable drop in temps. In fact, we experienced all kinds of weather while we were there.

And on the way home we wondered at the majesty of the Columbia.

While we try to make it over to Mt Rainier every year, these last two trips are a part of our ongoing exploration of Washington State. This state has everything from rocky seastack coasts to dry dusty deserts and I want to see it all. I lived the first eight years here never crossing the Cascade Range, in which time we travelled all over the peninsula, including most of the San Juan Islands. I've been up to Bellingham and down to Vancouver, from White Pass all the way over to Kalaloch, but until summer 2010 I had never been east of the Cascades. We remedied that by visiting Delia and Reed Rasmussen in Spokane, which is a great area. Then last summer we sent to Washington wine country down near Yakima. Once you pass over the mountains, the landscape changes to desert and things get a lot more cowboy. Cows and horses and farmland all over the place! 

Now I want to see Neah Bay up in the northwestern corner and Kettle Falls and the Grand Coulee Dam over in the northeastern corner. Each region is beautiful in its own way, but these travels always remind me how much I love our wet, woodsy Puget Sound. 

As I saw on a sign when we were on our way home...
Domus dulcis domus.
Home sweet home!

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