07 July 2008

2008 June 12 and 13 - WA

Fish Ladder at Tumwater Falls, WA

My comments from the days:
- a slightly bumpy take-off and very bumpy descent begins our trip
- Sat next to a wonderful Indian gentleman heading to Portland, his nephew just graduated from Boulder
- I can count the number of airports I've been to with two hands, and Denver wins the prize for ease of movement; lupper at Wolfgang Puck - cheese-less mushroom and spinach pizza, quite tasty, even approved by the dairy phreak - he had to eat the last piece ... those are large mini pizzas
- On to Seattle where I find out these Frontier planes have adjustable headrests and tv monitors ... what a comfortable seat ... relatively
- And, Frontier employees (on the whole), seem genuinely glad to see you, what a shock compared to previous experiences on other carriers, they even have pleasant TSA employees ... how'd they wrangle all the perks?
- pick up car from airport and evening in the Best Western in Tumwater, WA - nice, comfy room layout ... big room ... no report on pillow comfort yet
- it is so strange to be wandering around a city at 9 pm, the sun hasn't set, and it looks like supper time, this is the type of sunset we see at 7 pm, but this town is quiet, it's late ... and sunset lasts much longer here, we get progressively longer days the next two weeks ... this is only the beginning

Morning 06/13/2008
- fairly good night's sleep, pillows get a 6/10
- complimentary bkfst of fruit and oatmeal was delicious, lots of options
- check out and detour to Tumwater Falls for a lovely morning walk and photo session; the Maples are massive, the people are friendly, and the June morning is a little nippy
- my only regret with this area is that Tumwater supporters don't push native vegetation ... I'm betting half this stuff is Asian in origin
- head west on 101/108/12 going clockwise around the park, it is drizzly and the distant trees are cloaked in fog and mist
- there is some clearcut logging that's occurred recently, and that is hard to see
- I wonder if the pacific NW has mud slide problems (yes, this is what buried the Am. Indian village of Ozette several hundred years ago)
- Stop at a park station for maps and suggestions
- stop by hotel - Kalaloch Lodge - too early to check in, but we can eat lunch at the restaurant ... not bad for an Aramark (hiss) owned place
- we decide to visit Rialto beach, which is slightly handicap accessible (there is a viewing platform that looks out over the ocean, but the particular conditions of the NW coast would preclude the beaches from being handicap accessible to the point most people think about when considering "beach") ... lots of huge boulders and massive driftwood (whole trees with diameters of 8 feet and more) covers the beach, we climbed over to the peninsula/spit, near James island ... recommended only for the good of balance, determined, and slightly fool hardy ... you could really hurt yourself

- a drive through the little fishing village of La Push, boats and people

- then in to Second beach, with a shorter walk than Third beach (0.8 vs. 1.4 miles OR 1.29 vs. 2.25 Km) but seemingly straight up and down to bodies stressed by Rialto beach climbing ... we've probably only walked 2.5 miles (4.02 Km) or so, but my body says 'more like 4'

- Into town, Forks, to stop at the grocery store, Thriftyway, prices were a bit higher than at home, but they don't exactly have loads of competition ... and selection was surprisingly large for a small town

- exhausted after our grocery store run, we skip over to the local pizza shop, Pacific Pizza - good salad bar: beans, peas, carrots, cucumber, etc.; pizzas not too shabby, simple crust and they aren't stingy on toppings; horrible decor though, the decorator obviously found a sale and bought everything

- hotel round two, they check us in and we head to our Seacrest room, twice as much as the Best Western with 1/3 the amenities: shampoo dispenser broken, large shower area, medium size room, passable view, refrigerator, BUT no cell phone service, soap stinks (and the stink lingers for hours), no tv, no phone (not always a bad thing, but I can't check in at home)
- the water gets cold after 15 min of showering, he went first [naturally], so I'm left to my cold devices and have to finish with a spit bath in the sink ... we always had warm water in the sink ... huh?

- we are washing our clothes as we go, especially when staying in the same place and everything having time to dry, I'm not a fan of the laundromat or the time they waste

- I coat myself liberally with lotion as I am windburned, yow ... and I might have a bit of sunburn as well.

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