Thursday, August 5, 2010

We are still in Paradise AKA Sequim. The weather has been perfect - 70-75 every day and after the morning fog from the ocean, sunny.

We have been taking in the sights, enjoying the Washington wine that we accumulated and have to drink before next Tuesday (a tough job but it has to be done!), and trying out our kayak. Oh yes and there was a short foray into the American medical system. It IS true that they ask how you are going to pay before they ask ANY medical questions. After that however, they were perfectly nice.

So we begin on this leg of the Washington state tour at the Hurrican Ridge in the Olympic National Park. It was a pleasant drive from Sequim. You go into the park south of Port Angeles. It is a good climb with the highest point in sight being about 7900 ft. You can see Victoria! It is a lovely vista as you can see from the photos, some towards Victoria and some to the south towards the Olympic Mountains. Deer wandered near the visitor centre. We worried a bit about the Chinese family who appeared to want a photo of their 3 year old with the deer. Did they think it was tame??

Victoria in the distance. Olympic Mountains

Another day we went to the Hoh Rain Forest. It was quite lovely but not as filled with atmosphere as the forest between Nanaimo and Tofino. We got a few good shots of moss and old treres. I even tried to get a picture of the moss growing under water. We were there on a Sunday and it was really busy. The parking lot was totally full and we parked at the side of the road with many others (and I do mean many.)

We went to Port Gamble another day. It is a little town that has spruced up buildings from the early 1900s. It is pretty (and there was a good quilting store!).

On the way back to Sequim, we dropped in at Fort Worton near Port Townsend. It was active from 1902 to 1953 to protect Puget Sound. We were not very sure WHAT or WHO they were protecting it from and they did not make it clear. It was interesting anyway and had a lovely location. I loved the (to me) weird trees.

We have also been out in our kayak. Once we went out on the Cline Spit that is near the larger Dungeness Spit. A spit is a narrow protrusion of land extending into the sea. That was our maiden voyage and we had to decrease the air in the bottom of the kayak to make it more stable. The next time we went out to the John Wayne marina (yes, THE John Wayne). The marina was built in 1985 on 22 acres donated by the Wayne family. John Wayne sailed his yacht in this area and envisaged a marina in this bay. It was a lovely area and we had a good paddle. We are getting (oh OK, read Isobel is getting more) comfortable with paddling and being on the water. We are very glad that we bought wet suits and shoes. The ocean water is a little cold.

This is a photo of the spit from Hurricane Ridge. You can see the outcroppings into the ocean. We like the spits because they are sheltered.

We dropped in to a dog show at Sequim and had an interesting time looking at all the breeds. We saw a Bichon all fluffed up. We could not imagine our Snuffy looking like that. There was even dog dancing! Unfortunately, we forgot the camera (we only have 4 with us!!). We did find out about a good chewy for dog teeth and so went to Petco to get some for Casey (our mixed breed found dog). Can you believe they are bull penises? Casey thought it was yummy.

Now we are into our last few days here. We still have to go to a lavender farm and get in a kayaking adventure ot two. Then on to some visiting in Vancouver.