A long time later, or maybe just a week.
A note from the school of time and space. I know I talked early on about what this journey was going to mean to me, since I’d be traveling the roads made long ago by my parents, with me in tow. I didn’t tell all then, and I won’t now. But there are stories to tell, and I’m out here in West Tay-hass with time and miles on my hands, finally.
After Boise was a long jog across scenery that ranged from spectacular to dreadful. Then we arced across a corner of Oregon and into the Hungry Horse hills of eastern Washington. The new through highway bypassed the Columbia Gorge, so I didn’t get to see it. The Columbia crossing was as near to ordinary as could be with a river so big, as was the bypassing of the Richland-Pasco-Kennewick triangle. Hardly noticeable to the folks I’m riding with, except they were curious about the fields full of long poles strung together top to top.Hops, I said, and got a moment of curiosity in return. No one was really interested until we hit the Cascades, then grand landscapes, then rain, then snow. That was June 4.
While others were dozing I spent the day in a string of flashbacks that started in Idaho, when I went to dinner with Jo Henderson, her son and daughter-in-law, and Sarah to the Cottonwood Inn, where elk and bison were on the menu, but not in the kitchen. I settled for the halibut, but it stirred a memory of long- ago visits to Twin Falls, where we had dinner with Ted and Katy Barker and encountered elk, bison and black bear. I was disappointed that the elk was not available, but the company more than made up for it.
Then we hit the Cascade Range, and memories old and new took a back seat to the absolute splendor of the peaks shrouded in all the well-watered trappings and finery of the temperate rain forest. Up and up we went, through sunshine, fog, rain and then a soft, sugary snow that frosted the pines and spruce and sluiced off the wipers, and followed us about half way down. A glorious welcome to the western coast.