The OTHER part of Washington State

Anyone who reads my blog regularly knows how much I love the Northwest, both Washington and Oregon.  The mountains, ocean beaches, trees, and greenness (no I don’t know if that is a word, but I’m going with it!) are some of my favorite things.  But to be fair, there is a another part of Washington that I rarely mention…

Looking back over my posts, one would think that the Northwest is made up entirely of views like this…

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And, when you live in Western Washington and Oregon, there are many of these views like this, and others even more beautiful.  It is why I love living here.

However, its time to fill you in on the rest (and in fact the bigger part I believe) of my state.

Washington is split by the Cascade mountains.

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A chain that runs from British Columbia, through Oregon and runs into the Sierras of California.  One of the reasons Seattle gets so much rain is this mountain range.

Moisture comes off the Pacific Ocean, and as the air mass hits the mountains, it rises, and when it rises, it dumps rain.  This helps keep our side of the mountains green and lush. (Hence the nickname the “Evergreen State”)

But what happens to the other side?  Well they get the rain shadow effect.  Meaning it is MUCH dryer and much browner and darn near a desert in places.  It is the land of tumble weeds, basaltic rock

imageand more extreme temperatures, hotter in the summer and a helluva lot colder in the winter.  I love visiting, but it’s just not green enough to live for me.

However, it does have its own beauty.  especially if you go farther east, and hit the Palouse.  (Palouse means rolling hills)

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When irrigated, this is one of the most productive wheat-producing areas of America if not the world.  Now I am no farmer, but I can appreciate the view, especially as the sun starts to get lower and gold starts to glow.

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As you drive along, you see these hills stretch for miles.  I’ve heard some people say it’s boring, but for me, it makes the miles fly by.  The hills remind be of ocean waves, and I can watch them forever.  Then, just when it might start getting a bit much, something appears.

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Yep in addition to wheat fields, it is prime windmill country as well!  Ewa is known for constant winds of varying speeds, these wind mill farms have sprouted all over on that side of the mountains, and generate clean energy with no byproducts.  You can see them from a distance, but when they get close, you see just how BIG they really are!

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Since I flew to Spokane today, I was able to drive down to Pullman, the home of WSU, for dinner.  It’s a little over an hour away, but I had great music playing, blue sky, very little traffic, and it made for the perfect afternoon and evening.

Most of my trips to Pullman and through these wheat fields are either on the way to or on the way home from a football game.  There are times I don’t even notice the scenery.

Today though, I had all afternoon to get there and back.  It reminded me how much I enjoyed my time at WSU, and that there is beauty to be seen even without mountains and ocean.  Hell, there may be hope for Atlanta yet!

Thanks for coming by!

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One Response to The OTHER part of Washington State

  1. sarburch says:

    I love those wind turbines, too!

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