Thursday, May 2, 2013
POST 1109; MAY 02, 2013; BELLINGHAM, WASHINGTON
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After my 20 + walk yesterday morning, I joined up with the local walking group for an evening walk of an hour or so. Nine members showed up...we climbed some rather steep trails, strolled through Whatcom Falls Park, doubled back across the top of Alabama Ridge, and returned to our starting point by descending some VERY steep hills through upscale residential neighborhoods.
Alabama Avenue from the Pedestrian Bridge. ORCAS Island in the far distance.
Should not have eaten that quart of ice cream.
Bellingham Bay, Lummi Island and distant Orcas Island from atop Alabama Hill.
Whatcom Creek from the Yew Street Bridge...early this morning after my 6:00 am start. A few years ago, a pipeline break dumped thousands of gallons of gasoline into this waterway...it exploded in a series of thundering "bombs" sounding much like a B-52 bombing run in Viet Nam. A few meters behind where I am taking this photograph, three teenagers were burned to death trying to escape the massive flames on the burning water.
Local Mini-Ranch in the middle of the 8% + slope of Yew Street Hill. It was my intention this morning to walk the steepest hills in Bellingham in preparation for my return to Roanoke next week to continue walking.
Survey Crew on Yew Street Hill.
Yew Street after leaving the residential district atop Yew Street Hill.
As part of Lake PADDEN Park Complex is this excellent 18-hole golf course.
Click click the image to enlarge the print size...easier to read the sign.
The first Tee of Lake Padden Golf Course. I, together with Brother Jim and his son (my nephew) Dale, have teed off many times from this spot.
Lake Padden is a well kept secret from the outside world. It is truly one of the finest manicured and maintained golf courses in the entire country.
The golf course restaurant was open, so I enjoyed breakfast of scrambled eggs, bacon, potatoes, and toast...watching through the picture windows as golfers teed off.
Opposite a stand of first growth gigantic trees lies beautiful Lake Padden. Gas motors are forbidden. Last Saturday was opening season for the more than 22,000 rainbow trout ( approximately 10") planted in the lake this year. Everyone I spoke to had caught a number of trout this morning.
A magnificent 2.6 mile long trail circles Lake Padden...a favorite of walkers, runners, dog lovers, and equestrians. Between the lake and golf course lie a number of full size baseball fields...and a "dog run", where dogs are free to romp unhindered.
Lake Padden Park lies atop a hill overlooking the bay of Bellingham. The hillside is a favorite neighborhood...each home with it's own special viewpoint looking far across the waters to Vancouver Island to the Northwest...and the Olympic Mountains some 100 miles to the Southwest.
After walking down the steep switchbacks from Lake Padden to the plains of FAIRHAVEN...one of the three original towns now comprising BELLINGHAM, I stopped in at the PARKWAY CHATEAU. On a whim, I decided to see what this retirement home was up to...
Being FAR above my income level, I was nonetheless, welcomed, taken on a private tour, invited to lunch in the sumptuous dining room, embarked on spirited conversation with residents and management...and invited to return next Monday at 4:00 pm for a formal talk with RACHELLE, the Entertainment Director, before the 150 or so Residents.
Please say HELLO to BILL (Community Management Team) and RACHELLE...my hosts today at PARKWAY CHATEAU.
I look forward to meeting again with Bill and Rachelle on Monday.
FAIRHAVEN has turned into a true 19th Century Artists Community, complete with period buildings and shopping experiences.
A short walk from Fairhaven center of action lie the transportation center of Bellingham, including Greyhound Bus, AMTRAK, and San Juan Island(s) Cruise and The Alaska Ferry Terminal.
Early in the 20th Century, this area was a major bathing beach of local residents.
AMTRAK Railroad Station.
Alaska Ferry Terminal...with a large auto/truck/pedestrian accommodations...leaving Bellingham (Fairhaven) every Friday at 6:00 pm...a popular event for HAPPY HOUR crowds in the many fine eateries surrounding Bellingham Bay.
The US Coast Guard - and Homeland Security - has a substantial presence in Bellingham...as well as the other seaports leading to Canada and by way of the Straits of Juan de Fuca to the Pacific Ocean some 150 miles distant.
A pedestrian walkway...much of it over open waters...has recently been completed from downtown Bellingham to Fairhaven, some 3 miles distant. I walked from Fairhaven back to Bellingham on this walkway today.
Part of the over-water portion of the Bellingham - Fairhaven "trail".
From the over-water walkway, the distant apartments were, when I first arrived in Bellingham in 1987, available for $65,000.00 PURCHASE PRICE...all with the most magnificent views of Bellingham Bay, Canada, Olympic Mountains, as well as many of the nearby 172 islands of the San Juan Islands.
An ocean-traveler temporarily anchored a few yards off the walkway.
Ocean Kayaks, popular in the Pacific Northwest. A world renowned event...SKI TO SEA...(check it out on Google) will be held in a few short weeks, which includes racing sea kayaks. In my 38 foot yacht, I one time paced a single crewed kayak for four or five miles...he staying just off my bow wave...as JOURNEY motored at 7 mph...quite a feat, but common around here.
Low tide today was an open invitation for beach combers and sun worshippers on this bright sunny day.
Belling - Fairhaven trail is a virtual continuous park for all ages...all wheelchair accessible.
Please click image to enlarge. A little known historic fact: The Commanding Officer of the United States Military opposing the British during the above "Pig War" (Google it), was the Civil War Hero, General Pickett...whose home is still lived in on the hillside above Bellingham Bay.
Please say HELLO (again) to PAUL. We met Paul a couple days ago. This afternoon, Paul and I met once again as I walked back to Bellingham. Paul was on his way to the Fairhaven Alaska Ferry Terminal. Paul has reservations on the Alaska Ferry setting sail tomorrow evening at 6:00 pm. On this trip, Paul will be receiving some medical work on his teeth...which he treasures !
Have a strange feeling Paul and I are destined to meet again in the future.
Belling is fraught with drive-in Coffee Houses. The Wailing Goat happens to be on the Bellingham - Fairhaven trail, so I stopped in for a chat.
Please say HELLO to SHANNON...the young lady in the preceding pic...business, Shannon says, is growing quickly now that the Sun is warming things up.
Bellingham has a few select Murals.
The above art-deco building houses HONEY MOON Mead-Wind-Cider to a large and growing clientele, serving ONLY products produced on the premises.
Please say HELLO to LINDA.
Linda, a "retired" teacher holding a Masters Degree is happy as a clam at high tide working as Manager - and sole "server" for seven of the eight years HONEY MOON has been in business.
Enjoyed a lengthy chat with Linda as I savored my glassof "Hard Cider" produced in the back room...it was excellent.
Bellingham - and indeed, also Fairhaven - have many popular and ofter hidden away "entertainment" opportunities...many offering locally produced spirits...many complete with local talented performers.
Holly Street...Bellingham's main drag.
I began my walking day at 6:00 am. Arriving at the downtown bus terminal, I opted to hop on for my first ever bus ride...cost $0.50 (for Seniors @ 1/2 price). Took only 10 minutes instead of 45 minutes to walk the rest of the way home. Was already nearly 6:00 pm, and I had a long evening ahead of me wading through over 100 photographs to pick appropriate images, sort into a storyline, upload into my blog, and add a few words...
and now, at 11:00 pm, I have finally reached the final paragraph...only 5 hours at my computer this evening to create today's adventures...I do hope you enjoy !!!