Day 4: A Day of Ecosystems

“Hey, did you take my camera? I have a blog to update!”

“What makes you think it was me?”

[Sorry for the delay, folks…here’s the whirlwind portraits of today’s 250 mile return trip from Walla Walla back to Seattle. T-minus 15 hours to Alaska!]

Sophomore year at Whitman, I lived in campus housing called an “interest house.” We had the german house, the spanish house, the fine arts house, the outhouse, the asian studies house, etc. Rad, Thad, Robannie, Janelle, Rosy, Mike, and Jeremy and I comprised Whitman’s inaugural writing house and we made the type-font sign hanging in this photo. With so many wedding details to attend to this weekend, I didn’t have much time for campus nostalgia. The Writing House, however, was a mandatory stop on my exit tour this morning.

Car photos don’t do the Yakima Canyon justice, but that’s all I got. We took a side route on the way back this time, following the meandering Yakima River as it carves through this steep canyon. The water was flowing so quickly it was hard to find a place to stop and dip in, but once we did it was well worth it. 101 degrees outside but the water was a perfect 50 and fresh, fresh as can be.

I took this picture at Snoqualmie Pass for Joy, who would very much like to hike in the Pacific Northwest. You can’t get any more quintessential than a fine espresso stand at the top of a pass with peaks like these as the backdrop. This spot is also a hot stop along the famed Pacific Crest Trail. Only in the PacNW can you get espresso at a place like this and have it made perfectly to order (“Hi, I’d like a single iced espresso with extra ice and a splash of soy, please.”)

After saying goodbye to the Walla Walla wheat fields and vineyards, crossing the scablands, cutting through the Yakima Canyon, and crossing the Cascade Range, my day ended at the Puget Sound in West Seattle. Boy did it feel great to see the sun set over salt water again. The highest range you see in the distance are the snow-capped Olympics in the Olympic National Forest, a place near and dear to my heart.

Breaking news: Self proclaimed tree hugger spotted in West Seattle.

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