North America / Pacific Northwest / Washington

“Pic of the Week”, May 24, 2018: Trans-Canada Airlines, Seattle

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One of the world’s great plane museums is Seattle’s Museum of Flight.  We’ll visit the planes inside on another day; today I wanted to focus on a airplane that caught my attention from the collection of aircraft outside the main museum building.

The plane is a Lockheed 1049G Super Constellation.  This airplane was delivered to Trans-Canada Airlines — Canada’s national carrier which ultimately became Air Canada — in 1954.  It was among the last of commonly used propeller aircraft, with jet engines soon to dominate commercial air travel.  This particular plane, after providing passenger and later cargo service, was converted into a cocktail lounge and lunch bar in Toronto before being restored and added to the Museum of Flight’s collection.

It is …

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Duncan Garden, Manito Park, Spokane

Duncan Garden (12)

Spokane is a small city in eastern Washington state.  It rests between two great mountain ranges, the Cascades to the west and Rockies to the east.  Generally it is a place people drive through instead of being a travel destination.  But it is in a lovely setting and does have several sites of interest, like Manito Park on the city’s South Hill.

Within Manito Park you’ll find Duncan Garden, a classic 3 acre European Renaissance-style garden (characterized by mirror-image symmetry, a central water feature, and geometric planting beds).  During the summer months the garden includes many beds of assorted and colorful annuals, making it a popular spot with locals.  The flowers are largely planted by volunteers.

Duncan Garden, Spokane

Duncan Garden, Spokane

The garden was originally called …

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“Pic of the Week”, February 8, 2019: Downtown Baker City, Oregon

01 Baker City, Or (3)

I’d driven past Baker City in northeastern Oregon a number of times before finally visiting it — twice — in one year.  One visit was a relatively quick one, just driving through to see the historic district while on a road-trip.  For our second visit it was our destination for viewing the 2017 Solar Ellipse as it was in the path of totality.

Baker City is relatively small, with around 10,000 residents.  The community lay along the famous Oregon Trail and really took hold after the railroad came through.  By 1900 it was the largest city between Salt Lake City and Portland.  It rests between the picturesque Wallowa and Elkhorn Mountain and the setting is quite pretty.   The city …

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.All Trips / Car Culture / North America / Pacific Northwest / Washington

Great Cars Along the Highway: Ford Sunliner, Spokane

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Came across this lovely old car parked in a shopping mall in Spokane.

It’s a Ford from the early 1950s that seems to have been reworked somewhat, especially its grill, making it a little hard to pinpoint.  I expect a 1952 or 1953 vintage, but a lovely classic  convertible.  I found it interesting that it has its old dealer plaque, Stoddard-Wendle.  Wendle is still a popular Ford dealership in the city. 

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)

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.All Trips / North America / Oregon / Pacific Northwest / Travel Talk

Solar Eclipse 2017 as viewed in Baker City, Oregon

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I’d only seen one prior solar eclipse in my life and that was long ago when I was a university student.  That one occurred on a cold winter day in February 1979, in my home city of Winnipeg, Manitoba.  So when I heard of the proximity of the American solar eclipse of 2017, I knew it was definitely time to view another.

There’s no question that this week’s eclipse was a popular event and thousands of people planned on visiting the areas of totality well in advance.  In fact, I couldn’t find a hotel room for less than $1000/night (which I refuse to pay) within the thousand mile stretch across the Northwestern USA that was of interest to me when I …

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.All Trips / Pacific Northwest / Washington

A fall visit to the Nishinomiya Tsutakawa Japanese Garden, Spokane, Washington

Fall 2008 031 Japanese Garden, Manito Park

One of the things I enjoy about blogging is sharing less commonly visited but interesting destinations.  The Nishinomiya Tsutakawa Japanese Garden in Spokane, Washington, certainly fits that bill.  A smaller garden, well known to locals but not to many tourists, it has its charms!  When I lived in Spokane I’d commonly stop by as it was midway between the hospital where I worked and the library I frequented.  I enjoy the calm nature and beauty of Japanese gardens.  They are places where nature, tranquility, gardening skills, and art merge.

The Nishinomiya Tsutakawa Garden sits on the site of the old zoo (closed in the 1930s).  The garden was designed by Nagao Sakurai, a master garden architect (who at one time was …

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“Pic of the Week”, October 31, 2015. The Pumpkin Harvest, Green Bluff, Washington

Fall 2008 003  Harvest Festival Green Bluff

Today is Halloween and to celebrate the season I’ve put up some images of a pumpkin patch and field of ripe pumpkins.

Green Bluff is a farming mesa just north of Spokane, popular with fruit and vegetable growers.  There are a number of festivals in the area throughout the season, but undoubtedly one of the most popular is October’s ‘Harvest Festival’.  These pictures were taken a few years back and bring back some pleasant memories of when my kids were young and got very excited about carving pumpkins or going trick-or-treating.

Enjoy the day!

Karl on | Comments Off on “Pic of the Week”, October 31, 2015. The Pumpkin Harvest, Green Bluff, Washington
.All Trips / North America / Oregon / Pacific Northwest / Washington

The Amazing Columbia River Gorge!

Columbia River 3-2006 020  Oneonta Gorge  Beacon Rock in distance.

One of the most scenic road trips anywhere in the world is on the Oregon side of the Gorge, on the Columbia River Highway (I-84), between Portland and the Dalles.  Besides a smooth drive on the freeway, an excellent diversion here is to head up the old Historic Columbia River Highway, a narrow road that twists its way through the mountains and cliffs, past dozens of waterfalls, including the beautiful 620-foot (190 m)  Multnomah Falls.

The Columbia River is one of North America’s longest, at 1200 miles (1930 km) long, starting in southeastern British Columbia, Canada.  The Columbia River Gorge was carved by glacial floods (especially the Missoula Flood) thousands of years ago and is the only sea-level passage through the Cascade Mountain range.  …

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