Seattle is more like Portland or Vancouver

On the Road again - World Tour Volume 2

Travel time: February 2011 - February 2012 | by Robert and S.

USA & Canada: Seattle - Portland - Boise


On 08/27 and 28.08. we went to see Seattle. The city was okay, but we didn't like it as much as Vancouver. The only really nice places were the Pike Place Market and Pine Street in downtown and the suburb of Fremont, where we visited the Sunday market and had a lovely cup of coffee in the sun.

What we noticed negatively here was that an extremely large number of homeless people were loitering on the streets. We only know this from our last trip from San Francisco, but haven't actually experienced it anywhere on this trip in the USA. We also felt a little unsafe here for the first time. Otherwise, the 2 days in Seattle were totally unspectacular and we also used the time to give our car a necessary oil change ...

The Space Needle in Seattle - the only really showable photo of the city ... says it all, doesn't it?

Strengthened with fresh oil under the hood it went on August 29th. Early in the morning to Mount Rainier National Park, one of the oldest national parks in the USA and the first in which the layout of the park was planned in advance in order to offer visitors the most spectacular views on the one hand and to leave most of the park untouched on the other. The result is impressive, because the drive to the mountain is a real experience and you always have the opportunity to make stops and take photos. At 4,392 meters, Mount Rainier is the fourth highest mountain in the Lower 48 States and its exposed location makes it particularly powerful. It is also an active volcano and is currently classified as potentially most dangerous in the event of an eruption.

The originally planned long hike unfortunately fell into the water because Sabina decided in the morning to have several (and always very spontaneous) wrong gastric emptying (vulgo spew disease) and was therefore very, very weak on her legs ... Of course I took care and so we only did 3 half-hour walks, which were very easy to tackle due to the lack of height difference. But even here we saw a few deer, a marmot and a large black bear!

We stayed overnight in Kelso, Washington.

Mount Rainier in full splendor and without a cloud in the sky - a rare picture, because the mountain is often not seen for weeks because, as the largest and almost free-standing mountain, it magically attracts all the clouds in the area ...

... and we're right in the middle instead of just on the way to Paradise in the National Park

Fantastic mountain landscape in Mount Rainier National Park ...

Paradise - a name with a program!

In the Paradise Visitor Center - and appropriately our flag is right in the middle

The next morning we went to Mount St. Helens, which erupted with enormous force in 1980 and claimed more than 50 lives. Unfortunately the weather changed completely overnight and we saw absolutely nothing of the volcano. However, we were able to watch 2 films in the observatory, which at least gave us an impression of the mountain and the surrounding landscape on video. Because it was raining, a hike was out of the question that day.

So we drove away from the mountain around noon. The destination for the day was Portland, Oregon.

Less than 24 hours later and only a few miles south of Mount Rainier ... fog soup and no Mount St. Helens to be seen ...

View into one of the many valleys that are slowly recovering after the devastating eruption in 1980; taken just below the fog and cloud line

On 08/31 we went to see Portland. The city was really great - lots of parks, everything green and clean. We went to a farmers market where we could try many local delicacies and walked along the waterfront. After that we were still in the posh district (S) Nob Hill and took the shuttle bus through Washington Park. The day has passed incredibly quickly which is always a sign of a successful day ...

Portland Building

At the waterfront ...

On 09/01 we left Portland to the east and first drove through the Columbia River Gorge. The 1913 Historic Columbia River Highway was the first scenic highway in the United States. It meanders past waterfalls, leads through thick forests and has many beautiful viewpoints of the Columbia River. We especially liked the Latourell Falls and the Multnomah Falls - the fourth highest waterfalls in the USA. At Bonneville Dam, where the Columbia River is dammed, we could see a fish ladder below the waterline and because it was the season we saw hundreds of huge salmon "climbed" the ladder to get further up the river. We then drove to Walla Walla, Washington, where we were on 02.09. tasted a couple of wines. The wines were very good, but we couldn't really find out where they were grown ... at least not directly around Walla Walla, because there was only desert ...

Sabina at the Latourell Falls ... she was wet afterwards

Multnomah Falls - 620 feet high!

And there it was after all ... Mount St. Helens - but seen from the south, so that you can't see the blown north part here

View of the Columbia River from one of the many vantage points

Where are the vines ??? Recorded directly in front of several wineries in Walla Walla ...

On September 3rd it went from Walla Walla over the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway to Boise, the capital of Idaho. Hells Canyon is the deepest river-carved canyon in North America at a depth of 2,436 meters - deeper than the Grand Canyon. Here the Snake River meanders through the canyon. The area is very remote, so it is very difficult to get to the right depth of the canyon. On the Oregon side, we had to be content with the Hells Canyon Overlook, from which one had pretty good views at almost 1,800 meters above sea level. The day was very strenuous from a technical point of view and since we are both plagued by a bit of cold, we just rested the next day in Boise. A short walk to the State Capitol and an afternoon coffee were our only "efforts" ...

At the Hells Canyon Overlook

One foot in Oregon and one foot in Idaho

Idaho State Capitol in Boise

They have a beautiful coat of arms here ...

... and it seems to be very relaxed here in the Wild West, if you look closely at the governor's nameplate ... "Butch" seems to be a real cowboy, because behind this glass door there is a cool photo of him in a cowboy outfit and one where he rides a bull ...

What's the matter?:
Almost 3 years after the end of our first big trip, we are now taking another break from a regular life! On our second world tour we want to concentrate on the 3 continents Australia, North America and South America within one year. At the request of many of our loyal readers, we will once again publish our experiences as current as possible at this point - so we wish you a lot of fun reading and many guest book entries from you!
Departure:February 2011
Duration:12 months
Homecoming:February 2012
Destinations: Hong Kong
New Zealand
United States