Friday, July 23, 2010

Beating the Heat

I have discovered the perfect way to beat the 90 and 100 degree temperatures that we've been enduring here in the South.  Get out of town!!  Last week, LBeau and I did just that when we spent eight wonderful days in the Pacific Northwest, where the high never got above 75.  Here's a quick look at our trip with a few of my favorite photos.

After an early Tuesday morning flight to Atlanta, our Delta flight to Seattle was half an hour late departing (does anything run on time at ATL?).  But with the time change, we landed at Sea-Tac shortly after lunch and by 1:30, we were on our way to the Willamette Valley just south of Portland, Oregon.

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Oregon 047 Wednesday dawned crisp and cool, and we spent the morning driving through the beautiful countryside and touring the Domaine Drouhin winery, where we sampled some of the Pinot Noir that the Willamette Valley is noted for.

After a quick lunch, we visited the tasting room at the Carlton Winemakers Studio, where Jeff introduced us to some delicious organic wines.

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Thursday morning found us on the road again as we headed out for a drive up the northern part of the Oregon coast.  The views from Highway 101 were magnificent. 

Beautiful rock formations…

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Interesting lighthouses…

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Dramatic drop offs…

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And lots of these tiny espresso drive-ins.

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Oregon 305 Late that afternoon we arrived in Astoria, Oregon, where we had plenty of daylight hours left (it doesn't get dark until almost 10 p.m.) to visit Fort Clatsop and climb the Astoria Column, all 164 steps.  Unfortunately, LBeau will not let me forget that I made him stop part way up so that I could catch my breath.

Our hotel was right on the Columbia River and gave us a beautiful view of the Astoria Bridge, which spans the river into Washington.

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Friday morning, we crossed the bridge and made our way to Bainbridge Island, Washington, home of our daughter-in-law Katie.  Her parents' home sits right on Puget Sound, where you can spend hours watching the boat traffic.

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Once the fog burns off, you have a clear view of Mount Rainier in the distance.

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west2010 079 And you might even get lucky like Brent and Matt with your catch of the day.  These red crabs from Puget Sound made a delicious addition to our omelet Saturday morning.

west2010 150 Sunday morning, LBeau and I headed out for a tour around the Olympic Peninsula with Brent, Katie and the grands.  Our first stop was Sequim, where the Lavender Festival was in full swing.

The view from Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National Park was spectacular, and the wildflowers were equally beautiful.

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After a breakfast of French toast and more crab omelet, LBeau and I caught the Bainbridge to Seattle ferry Monday morning and headed south to get up close and personal with Mount Rainier.  Viewed from any angle, it is definitely a sight to behold.

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Unfortunately, all vacations eventually come to an end.  We left Seattle Tuesday morning wearing blue jeans, long sleeve shirts and fleece vests.  It was 57 degrees.  We arrived in Birmingham at 10:30 that night.  It was 87.  I'm sure we looked strange to all of those travelers in shorts, t-shirts and flip flops.

If you plan a trip to Washington and Oregon, I would definitely recommend going in July.  Amazingly, we didn't have a single drop of rain.


Traveling is definitely one of my favorite things, so I’m heading over to Laurie’s blog party.  Y’all are welcome to join us.



Sarah said...

Oh, to vacation on the west coast during the summer is heavenly. I have fond memories of trip to Seattle and surrounding areas. Thanks for sharing these beautiful shots. Makes me feel as if I've been enjoying those cool temps. ~ Sarah

Nancy's Notes said...

Kathy, what an incredible trip to Washington and Oregon! It's such a wonderful area, we love it! You are so right, leave if it gets to hot! Your photographs are just gorgeous, they could all be postcards!


Country Wings in Phoenix said...

Hi Kathy Sweetie...
Oh my gosh what a beautiful 8 day vacation to get out of the heat. I love Oregon and the coast. DH and I spent some time in Brookings, and it is breathtakingly beautiful.

I could smell the clean air and your photos are so gorgeous. I love the one of Dad walking the child in the tall grass with the colored flowers about. Oh how beautiful.

I love the photos of Mount Rainier. The snow looks so wonderful from a distance. You captured many moments and I thank you so much for sharing with me today.

Country hugs sweetie...Sherry

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

Oregon and Washington are definitely the place to be in the summer. We were there in June and it was equally as nice. My son lives in Oregon and I lived there for 18 years. Sure wish I was there now since it is 110 here. Your pictures are wonderful and bring back such fabulous memories. So glad you had a great trip. Hugs, Marty

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Oh Kathy, your photos are beautiful! I'm so envious - of your wonderful trip, the scenery, AND the wonderful temps you experienced. I'm so glad you shared all of this beauty for Favorite Things Sat. Have a great weekend. laurie

susan said...

I am filled with envy! What a wonderful trip and gorgeous pictures! Crab omelet sounds fabulous!

Just Breathe said...

It sounds like the perfect trip. So glad you enjoyed it. I was in Florida for 3 weeks and it was so hot! Glad to be back in CA!

Joyce said...

This looks like a wonderful trip. This part of the country is definitely on my list of places to see. And the temps sound heavenly right about now. It's in the 90s with the heat index over 100 and its HOT!

You have some beautiful photos!

Sue said...

What a wonderful time you must have enjoyed! The scenery is beautiful. Love the pics of Mt. Rainier and the rock formations on 101. Reminded me of Morro Bay in Cali. Hope all is well w/you!
~ Sue

Joycee said...

Beautiful pictures, just like I was along for the vacation! We've had company...for a month so I am out of touch with my favorite blogs. Susie Q Drive-in WAS here in the 1960's! Love to take our grandkids there, they need to know what it's like to step back in time!

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

Oh my this looks wonderful - what amazing pictures. I hope you'll have a great trip in October -- the weather will be much cooler then. Athens was wonderful and so were the islands -- everyone was so welcoming. Can't wait to hear about what you see and do there.