Leavenworth

DSC00113Leavenworth is an interesting village in Washington State.  It is a Bavarian  town nested in the Cascade Mountain Range. It was a logging town on the verge of extinction and now it is a very popular touristic destination.  2 millions people come here every year !

We arrived in Leavenworth early enough in the afternoon to walk through the town and admire the Bavarian architecture of the buildings. It is quite amazing to see.  For a moment you can easily forget your are in USA.

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There are many shops where you can find special items like nutcrackers, cuckoo-clocks, beer steins, music boxes and holidays decorations. You can do wine tasting , eat cheese or chocolate… It is a little paradise.

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I can just imagine the ambiance of the place  when they have special celebrations. They have many festivals throughout the year including Oktoberfest and the magical weekends of Christmas Lightning.

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After sleeping in Leavenworth we walked some more in the town and I took more photos. We realized that most stores only open at 10 or 11 AM. It was really quiet  especially because it was  Thursday  morning but I am sure the weekend are very busy.

It was really nice to visit Leavenworth. Thanks for visiting my blog.  Next post will be from our trip to Europe ( spring 2015).

Palouse country ( part 3)

On this post, I will let the pictures do most of  the talking !!! You will see Palouse country at the end of a sunny afternoon with the wind-power turbines. Do you know how tall they are ? If you compare them to the Eiffel tower,  they are quite smaller.  The Eiffel Tower measures 301 meters. The Space Needle in Seattle measures 184 meters and those wind turbines measure 107 meters.

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From the top of Steptoe Butte, the car  down below looks very small.

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I surprised a  deer  munching in the yard of a house in Colfax.

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We saw many horses …

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And a sign to warn us about…

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and…

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Such an interesting  area. I am sure you would also enjoy it . There is so much to see . I couldn’t show you all and tell you all… you would be bored maybe ! Please come back to read my next post about a Bavarian village, not in Europe .

Thanks so much for reading my travel story. And many thanks for all taking time to say something … it is much appreciated because I know we have busy lives and we need sometimes to disconnect from the electronics.   Have a good day/evening….

 

 

 

Palouse Country (part 2)

On our second day in Palouse area, we continued to explore. We drove through small roads (some unpaved) to reach Kamiak Butte.  The County Park is named in honor of Chief Kamiaken of the Yakama Indian Tribe. We parked and we walked up. The Butte rises to an elevation of 3641 feet/1110 meters. The view we get is through the trees. We saw pretty wild flowers. Again, we were happy we didn’t get rain as the sky was very cloudy.

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The view is similar to the one we had at Steptoe Butte  but here we didn’t get a 360 degree view when we reached the top.

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We drove  further south . We  stopped in Colton  to see the  Roman Catholic Church. More than 100 years old but in very good condition. We even went  inside. I was surprised it was not locked.  One lady living close by  saw me taking photos and came with us in the church.  We had a friendly chat.

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We continued our route and saw the famous fence made with 1000 wheels.

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I must say that  barns are in numbers. Especially red barns. I didn’t count how many we saw but I am sure this area has the most red barns in the whole state.

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We decided to drive further south and end up in Idaho  in a town called Lewiston. The view of the town from the highway is nice. We could see the Snake River.  And on the photo below  you see  part of the Old Spiral HWY.

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I will have one more post about Palouse to show you more photos I took during this trip. After all, the main reason to go there was to take lots and lots of photography. I probably took about 1500  but of  course, many had to be deleted.

Thanks for reading my story.

 

 

 

Palouse Country.

This post is about our trip to Palouse Country, Washington State.  The origin of the name may have been from the Palus Indian Tribe. French-Canadian trappers and fur traders may have used the French word pelouse meaning “land with short, thick grass” to describe the area. The Palouse Hills extend out from Steptoe Butte and cover an estimated 3,000 square mile region in SE Washington and Northern Idaho.  We look out upon a sea of wind-blown hills dotted with ancient buttes surrounded by distant mountains. The fertile silty loess makes the Palouse a productive farming region. In the Palouse wheat is king.

We left home on Sunday morning (May 22) quite early.  Our very first interesting stop was to see Palouse Falls and the Palouse River.  It is a 198 foot falls with high volume of water (in the spring and the fall). The iconic falls has been deemed the official water falls of Washington State.  This is an amazing spot for photography.  We didn’t hike down to get close to the falls. I could see it was a narrow path and did not feel very safe. I noticed also that there were many places with no fence. The view of the river was also really nice.

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You can see here where the water flows …into the river.  You can see people just above the canyon. And if you look carefully you will notice a trail ( on the right of the image below) . This is to allow you to get closer to the fall . Personally, I think it is a bit  risky to walk there but we saw people doing it.

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After about one hour, we drove to Colfax where we were going to spend 3 nights. Colfax is a very small town with less than 3000 of population. On the main street, you find a few restaurants, banks, post office, gas station, grocery store and some businesses.

The next  morning, we were up bright and early and ready to go to Steptoe Butte, a National Natural Landmark.  A Steptoe is an isolated hill, or mountain, of older rock that is surrounded by younger lava flows. This island in a sea of stone (quartzite that is some of the oldest rock in Washington State) is 3612 feet. It has survived massive floods and burning lava.

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Driving over there from Colfax was not very long but the ride was nice with all the green and the rolling hills on each side of the road. We saw some sheep and lamas.  During our time in Palouse, we saw also  lots of horses and some cows.

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We arrived  to the butte and  drove slowly as I wanted to capture it all. When we got to the top, we had a 360 degree view on the whole area. It was cloudy, very windy and cold, about 8C. But the view was magnificent.

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We had two full days to explore the area and see as much as we could.  Not much traffic on the roads. The villages we visited were also very quiet.  We realized that there was not much work happening on the fields also. All the work must had  been done already.

We were  happy with our first day. Especially because we didn’t have much rain. Just a little in the afternoon. Those big clouds would eventually go away.  My next post will show you more of Palouse Country.  We even went back up to Steptoe Butte at the end of our second day as the sun was out and I knew the photos would be more interesting  ( the sky less  cloudy and gray).

Thanks for reading/commenting. It means a lot to me. MERCI.