Monday, September 15, 2014

Washington Weekend continued



Our drive back home from the wedding turned into a fun and relaxing mini vacation when we decided to take Stevens Pass over the Cascade Mountains. Although I was born and raised here, there is a lot of the state that I have never seen and I was thrilled at the prospect of exploring new territory. It was a gorgeous day, bright and sunny with temperatures in the low 80s; perfect for a road trip and a walk in the woods.


 





Our first major stop was at Dry Falls, the now dry site of what was, in ancient times, the largest waterfall in the world.


From Dry Falls we turned west onto   Hwy 2 towards Seattle and experienced the always surprising diversity of Washington State. We drove through vast expanses of wheat fields, flat and yellow with low rolling hills. Very gradually the road began to climb and we were surrounded by acres and acres of fruit trees. It is apple harvest time and there were hundreds of men working in the trees as well as many signs in both English and Spanish saying "Pickers Needed". And, of course we had to stop at one of the many roadside fruit stands.

As we climbed higher into the Cascade Range the orchards gave way to the evergreen trees for which Washington is famous; dense forests of pine, Douglas Fir, cedar, spruce, and hemlock surrounded us and sunlight sparkled on the many streams and rivers on both sides of the highway. It was magical and too inviting to pass by without stopping.





Abundant rainfall keeps everything lush and green.












Huge old trees reach to the sky and shade the forest floor.








 


Moss grows everywhere, dripping from the trees, covering the ground, fallen logs, and even rock walls.
We returned to Seattle relaxed, refreshed and already planning our next walk in the enchanted forests of Washington.




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