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  •  The Great Around-the-USA Adventure

    Washington State

    19 May 08: We crossed the Columbia once again, back into Washington for the last time. We have been amazed by the change in terrain and climate in just a few miles as we got to the eastern side of the Cascade Mountains. All that lush greenery that one pictures as Oregon has given way to an arid landscape more reminiscent of the Southwest. The geography has flattened out and become more rolling.

    For pictures and comments of all the campgrounds we visited, click on "Campground Reviews" in Top Menu or on the links in the journal.

    We spent last night at Le Page Park, a nice little Corps of Engineer park on the John Day River. Today we crossed the Columbia into Washington and followed the river eastward along WA-14.   wa0001
     wa0003  Even from the Washington side of the river one still gets some great views of Mt Hood.
     Liz made me stop here to capture this field filled with lupine. And yes, that's Mt Hood again in the left background.  wa0005
    wa0016   Maryhill Museum was established by Sam Hill, a prominent citizen of this area in the early 20th century. He dreamed of building an agricultural community, but then decided in 1917 to dedicate his new home overlooking the Columbia and Mt Hood as a museum.
     On the grounds of Maryhill is this untitled, not completed, piece of art. The interesting thing here is that if you step slightly to the left and look out through the set of slots, you'll see that rock formation across the river perfectly centered! wa0013 
    wa0019  So much for those sharp cliffs and waterfalls of the lower Columbia River. 
     25 May 2008: Not much progress to report these days. The gods of misfortune have intervened in the form of dental problems. - I'd been having a toothache and cold sensitivity. Since we had planned to spend a few days here in Pasco, I called a local dentist and was able to schedule a visit for the next day. The bad news was that I needed a root canal and crown. The good news was that he could do the root canal and crown preparation the next day, and (after a phone call to the lab) that the crown could be ready in a week. Had that work done Friday, and now we're enjoying a relaxing time at Hood Park COE outside Pasco to await the crown, due in 29 May. It'll be fun to sit here tomorrow and watch everyone leave. hood27 

    30 May 2008: Ah, at last...we're free to resume our Great Adventure. My crown was actually ready yesterday, after only one week. Thank you, Tooth Fairy!

    As we headed up Rt 395, we were once again amazed at the wide open plains. Irrigation is the key to success here - without it, fields are barren.

     But then as we got closer to Spokane, we crossed another invisible climate line and suddenly there were trees, green grass and wild flowers.  wa0023

    Our destination for the day was Fairchild AFB, where we're spending a couple of nights at the FAMCAMP. On our to-do list, besides a major provisioning at the commissary tomorrow, and a haircut for yours truly, was a stop at the Personnel Office to get Liz a new dependents ID card - her old one was about to expire.

    Several crows were hanging around the tree over our campsite, making quite a raucus ruckus. We finally spotted this owl, at whom the crows were directing their squawks.

     2 Jun 2008: We departed Fairchild AFB this morning, heading eastward. We had planned a trip to Manito Park in Spokane yesterday, but the rain made us decide to take a one-day rain delay. We stopped there this morning and walked the various gardens of the park. For some more pictures of the park, click here.  spok04

    After leaving Manito Park, we made another stop on Cliff Drive, where we found this panoramic view of the city.

    Then it was on to Idaho.