Dismal Nitch

Exploring the Pacific Northwest, redux

 

Last year at this time we had just returned to the northwest from Chicago. You may recall my Emergence Series of posts outlining some of our activities during the pandemic. At the time, we, along with many others, thought the pandemic was just about over, but that was premature. Covid’s lingering pervasiveness meant that we had to resume most of our precautionary practices of the previous two years. This summer, knowing that we wanted to travel and visit with family and friends without risking anyone’s health, we got the latest Bivalent vaccine and our annual flu shots as soon as they were available.

After Labor Day we set out to explore and revisit a few of our favorite places in the Pacific Northwest: the Olympic Peninsula, Kalaloch, Ruby Beach, The Hoh Rainforest, and Port Angeles Рnone of which appear to have changed much over the years. We drove south to Mount St. Helens; during our repeated visits, it has been awe-inspiring to  witness how nature regenerates over the decades since the eruption. Another treasure that is close by, the Oregon coast, is always beautiful, whether on dry and sunny or moist and gray days. We crossed the Columbia River at Astoria and continued south, experiencing both Рhot, sunny days followed by foggy, low-lying-cloud days.

We have driven the coast many times over the years, usually en route to and from California. I’m reminded of our first road trip together decades ago when we took my old /5 BMW motorcycle down to the southwest, visiting friends in Colorado, riding in the dry, warm desert, over the frigid Rocky Mountain passes, winding our way on backroads and two-lane highways in Utah, Nevada, and up through central Oregon and then out to the coast.

Those were much simpler days and towns like Moab, Bend, and Cannon Beach were yet to be discovered. That first road trip led to many subsequent journeys that continue to this day.

Posted by Thomas Alix Johnston in Blog, 4 comments