I don’t know why some places get all of the best scenery. I also don’t get why we all don’t choose to live in places like this. I am sure that if we did it wouldn’t be as nice, and I am sure that it is all about the grass being greener… That said, I am having a hard time explaining to myself why I have not decided to drop everything and move to the west coast. Of course my job, friends and family are the answer but it is tempting.
Traveling west from Ellensburg along I90 didn’t seem like very much fun and with epic out of control forest fires raging to the north there was really only one route to take to get to Seattle and Gig Harbor. A quick run down I82 to Yakima allowed me to hook up with highway 12 and then along State Route 410 westbound. I didn’t really look at the map to see what I would be passing, just that it wasn’t an interstate. The road was amazing! Based on the fact that it was all chance I ended up going over the Chinook pass and throughout Mount Rainier National Park. The Chinook pass was quite hilarious as it turns around a hill with stops on both sides so if you do what I did and stop on the west side and take pictures you are surprised by getting back on your bike only to come around the corner 1 minute later to be face to face with Mt. Rainier itself.
After that I rode through Seattle (which is a very busy city), Over the Tacoma Narrows bridge (which I am glad it wasn’t too windy over) and on to the town of Gig Harbor. Family friends, Sally and Bob Cross live not far from there and it was a chance to see and reconnect with people of my childhood. Gig Harbor is an amazing little protected tourist spot and all of the area around has been developed with a thought of preserving the natural surroundings so while there are a lot of people who live in the area it doesn’t look like there are too many people there.
After spending a wonderful night and next morning with Sally and Bob I headed up to Port Angeles to catch the ferry over to Victoria and Vancouver Island. Port Angeles is not a town that will stand out to me as a place to go. Truly it is a work town based on the location of the port, which isn’t huge. The Cascade Mountains are there but for the entire time I was in town they were in cloud.
And so today I jumped on the ferry and came over to Vancouver Island. So far it is impressive! There is a vibrant set of communities, towns / cities are beautiful and trendy and in-between there is an amazing natural forest wrapped over mountains everywhere. Trees are huge here, and I think I haven’t been out to the really big ones yet. That is tomorrows task, get over to the west side of the island and see if I agree with my friend about Tofino BC.