Monday, July 16, 2007

Off To The Olympics (Mountains, That Is)

We left Vancouver just after 8am and headed up I-5. It was a beautiful day and perfect for a scenic drive. In a short time, we were in Olympia, where we left the interstate and headed up highway 101. This led us up the western shore of the Hood Canal, a very nice drive. I was surprised at the little amount of traffic for July ... perhaps because it was Monday?

Regardless, it was a painless drive on 101, which eventually led us into our destination of Sequim. Sequim (pronounced "skwim") has a special place in my heart because Dana and I both had a nine-month fellowship at Battelle here in 1995. It has been, and continues to be, a hot spot for retirees moving up from California. In fact, the average age is 68 (shudder). The town has really changed a lot, but at least the major attractions (nature) is still there.

After checking into the Sequim West Inn (meh), we drove to Port Angeles and had lunch at the Crabhouse. Unfortunately, they no longer carried the delicious fried razor clams. I did enjoy the shrimp, though, and my dad said that those were the best fried oysters he had ever had. During lunch, I was able to get two local draughts: Dabob Bay IPA and Dosewallips Special, both from the Hood Canal Brewery in Kingston.

After lunch, we walked around a bit in downtown before stopping at Swain's General Store. I bought the hydrometer, thermometer, and carboy that I still use today at Swains in 1995.

From here, it was time for some nature, so we drove up to Hurricane Ridge for a while to look around. Beautiful as always, were were extremely lucky to have good weather on this day. The next two days were solid rainy. Got some great pics and again saw a black bear (always do when I go up there). Coming back down the mountain, I again thought how tricky that road would be in a large vehicle (like a bus or RV). I wondered if there were ever any accidents. Oddly enough, tomorrow there will be one (more on that tomorrow).

From Hurricane Ridge, we drove back to Sequim, where I showed my parents where we used to live, work, and hang out. We stopped down at Port Williams and walked along the beach a bit. The end of the day was capped off by dinner at The 3 Crabs in Dungeness. I re-enjoyed Alaskan Amber on tap.

Later at the hotel, I had an Wapati IPA from Portland Brewing Co..

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