June 25 - 29, 2016:
We were blessed by the weather gods today with clear skies for the short trip to Marysville, Washington. We took the more country route north through the towns of Duvall and Monroe. I made a quick stop in Monroe, another cute Washington town, to walk around for a few minutes. It was then onto Route 2 west past Snohomish and onto route 5 at Everett, Washington. A few miles north we exit for the Tulalip Casino in Marysville. This is a huge Casino with a large dedicated RV lot, no charge as long as you join their players club and register with security. It is a most convenient location with lots of shopping and restaurants in the area.
|Mural on Monroe NAPA store|
|The Tulip Casino and Hotel|
|Tualalip sign on side of the Casino|
We took a ride to the historic downtown of Everett which was way cleaner and nicer than I expected. The historic area seems to be having a renaissance with many trendy shops, pubs, gyms, and restaurants to compliment the new apartment complexes that have been built. We then took a ride along the Possession Sound past the Everett Naval Station to a large Marina. This was originally the site of a huge Weyerhaeuser lumber Mill complex, now totally gone and grown up with weeds. There is an ambitious project underway to develop this open area with Parks, a performance stage, playgrounds and a large Condominium complex.
|The old Everett Motel is sadly gone, only|
the sign remains
|The Everett Theater remains in fine condition|
|Lots of aircraft money is helping here|
|The Marina is doing well|
|The old Weyerhaeuser office is restored and being moved|
|Planned "Waterfront Place" development next to the Marina on |
the site of the old Weyerhaeuser Lumber Mill
|The downside of working in the lumber mill|
We then drove to the Dock area with immense stacks of shipping containers along with cranes and equipment to unload cargo ships. We saw a sign for the “Pigeon Creek Trail” which was a path lined on each side by a 6 foot fence that ran between the Port of Everett and the railroad tracks to a waterfront beach area.
|The Port of Everett through the fence |
|The "beach" at the end of the trail|
In the evening we went to the Tulalip Casino and donated a few dollars to the Tulalip Tribe. This appears to be a very successful Casino and it was packed with patrons. There is a large fireworks sales area on the road behind the Casino that was shooting fireworks periodically all afternoon and at at dusk put on a pretty substantial fireworks show. The Tulip tribe appears to be doing well with a huge luxury Hotel attached to the Casino and a large Shopping Mall complex.
|The Fireworks show|
Sunday morning we are off for a short ride to Sedro-Woolley, Washington where we have a reservation at the Riverfront Campground. I could have gone most of the way on Route 5 but instead elected to take the more back country route 9. It was a very curvy, twisty handful of a drive, a beautiful ride, but could hardly take my eyes off the road. We get to the Riverfront RV Park which is a Sedro-Woolley City Park where the camp host has no record of our reservation, but luckily there are open sites and we have a paid receipt on our phone to show him, bottom line, no problem.
This campground is right adjacent to the fast flowing Skagit River which I believe floods the campground often by the way they have the electric boxes set on posts about 6 foot off the ground with a stairway to reach it.
We need a few grocery items so we go to downtown Sedro-Woolley which originally was two separate towns who grew together and eventually merged. This is a Timber town and they have a huge lumberjack, woodcarver and Rodeo festival called "Loggerodeo" as a part of their July 4th celebration. We actually were here in 2014 to see the parade and woodcarving competition. The downtown looks like it is suffering a bit, there isn’t much money here, but there is a beautiful new trendy market, "The Woolley Market". We stopped in unknowingly while their Sunday Jam session was in progress and it was great. It was a cross section of varying ages, from about 12 to 75 years, playing mostly old time country music on many instruments and they played together very well. I bought an ice cream from a young girl, about 13 years old, who said she was giving me big scoops because “You don’t live forever”, I thought it was funny, but now I’m wondering if I look that bad ?
|Downtown Sedro-Woolley with their angle parking|
|I still sense a wild west attitude around here|
|As usual it is also a railroad town|
|Excellent Sunday afternoon jam session at the Woolley Market|
|Window of an antique gas pump restoration shop in town|
We rode to the nearby towns of Burlington and Mt. Vernon, Washington on Monday. Mt Vernon is the larger town and the historic downtown had the beautiful "Lincoln Theater, built in 1926 and several other interesting old buildings, restaurants and shops. Burlington also has a small old downtown area with a very nice old City Hall building. In between, It’s the usual blight of boring strip mall and chain restaurants. We stopped for lunch in Burlington at the “Train Wreck” which was decorated inside with heavy timbers pieces, which they do well in this area of the country.
|Burlington City Hall|
|The Train Wreck in Burlington|
|Great time piece in Mt. Vernon|
|What do you want to do before you die ?|
|Interesting mural in Mt. Vernon|
|The beautiful Lincoln Theater in Mt. Vernon|
I may have to change my look as lately I’ve been falling prey to pan handlers, I must look too kind, non threatening or something. Yesterday a guy asked for 50 cents so he could make a phone call and I gave him a dollar although I haven’t seen a pay phone anywhere in a long time. Today a decent looking woman came smiling up to me and started giving me a long story about the small town she came from and this and that and finally, I couldn’t take any more of it and told her, “Can we just get the the point” and then gave her a couple of dollars to help her get home or whatever.
I took a ride north on route 542 known as the Mount Baker Highway all the way to the end. The upper section has recently opened and there were huge snow banks lining the road in places. The trails at the top remain under several feet of snow, but you are able to walk around and many people were, including me. The conditions were clear and the 360 degree views were fantastic. I made a couple of stops along the way at the "Nooksack Falls" and the "Horseshoe Bend Trail". The Waterfall is a wild one, but not fully accessible or viewable and some of the water from the river is being diverted to a nearby Power Plant. I only walked the Horseshoe Bend Trail for a short distance, mainly to see the beautiful Nooksack River.
|Many of the forests here look like a badly clipped poodle, ugly !|
|The Nooksack River coming right from the snowpack|
|A perfect spot to relax|
|The Nooksack Falls roar down 88 feet|
|Roadside view from the Mt. Baker Highway|
|Lots of snowballs being thrown here|
|Mt. Baker, (I think), view|
|A vast snow covered playground at roads end|
|Mt. Shuksan reflection in Picture Lake|
The carnival has arrived at the Riverfront Park and I’m not talking about a group of strange RV’ers. This is the real deal, Davis Shows, and they are setting up for the 4th of July weekend carnival that takes place here in Sedro-Woolley. It’s pretty exciting stuff, sadly we will miss it. We will also miss the Loggerodeo event on the weekend.
|The carnival is getting ready|
|The banners are out all along the parade route|
|The wood is being set up for the woodcarving competition|
Happy and safe travels to all over the holiday weekend,
Twinkles and Slick