Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Great Adventure Part 4,

Location, At Home.

Great Adventure Part 4.

We traveled from Bellingham, WA, to Portland OR, by Amtrak Cascades. We were scheduled to leave Bellingham at 8:45 AM but the train was delayed about 30 minutes due to a medical emergency North of Bellingham. Apparently someone needed medical care while enroute.
 View of Mount Rainier from the train as we enter Seattle.

We arrived in Portland at 3 PM and were met by our friends Thomas and Debbie. After a tour of downtown Portland we drove to their house. We knew they had moved but did not know they had bought a NEW house. It is a very nice house and the workmanship is beautiful.
Portland Train Station.

Wednesday was a day of catching up on each other’s lives. In the afternoon Debbie drove me to see an old friend who lives nearby. We haven’t seen each other in several years so we spent about 2 hours bringing each other up to date.
 The chef in his new kitchen.

Thursday was a day of sightseeing. We started with lunch with a view at Pittock mansion overlooking downtown Portland. Thomas had fixed awesome sandwiches for lunch. There are great views of downtown Portland and Mount Hood. Also, lots of flowers. The veranda on the mansion was being restored.
 View of Mount Hood from the Pittock Mansion.

After lunch we toured the Lan Su gardens in Chinatown which covers one city block in Portland. Amazing workmanship which was done by craftsman imported to do the work. All stone cutting was done on site. Beautiful workmanship.
 Gate to China Town.

 Workmanship on all the walkways.

We finished up the day at the Jenkins estate where we toured the house which is now used for conferences. We also toured the gardens. Another beautiful area on top of a hill.

Dinner was an antipasto plate Thomas had prepared. It was to die for.
 Now that's a bottle of wine!

Friday was Free Doughnut Day so we drove to Krispy Kreme Doughnuts for our free doughnut. Why not?

After the doughnut splurge we drove stopped at an Asian market. This place had everything you could imagine in the food line from fresh seafood to fresh meats and vegetables. They also had all those items unique to Asian food.

We then drove south to the town of Brooks to tour the Powerland Museums. First came lunch with another of Thomas’s marvelous sandwiches after all we needed sustenance to do all that walking. 
 Thomas making sandwiches. They were yummmy!

Powerland is an 86 acre collection of old vehicles such as cars, trucks, and tractors most of which run and are used annually for the big Steamup. We toured the old car museum, a tractor museum, where I found a perfect Case SC tractor like the one I learned to drive on the farm many years ago.
 A lot of memories here.

We also toured the Caterpillar museum and later the Truck museum. We barely hit the highlights of this great collection of vehicles.

By then we were pooped so drove back to Portland.

We lazed around on Saturday morning and later Thomas and Debbie drove us to the Amtrak station to catch the 2:25 PM Coast Daylight for home. This is a 27.5 hour overnight trip. 
 Thomas and I waiting in the Portland Train Station.

We were an hour late leaving Portland because three private cars were added to the back of our train. It took that long to switch tracks, hookup the braking and electricity and check it all out.
 The three private cars attached to the train.

Thomas had packed us sandwiches, cheese and crackers, and water for our trip which provided most of our needs. Thank You Thomas.

Amtrak seats are spacious and comfortable. At night there is a pullout section which gives your legs support. Pillows are passed out before night fall. All to make you more comfortable. There is Wi-Fi on the train but I couldn’t connect to it. There are electrical outlets at every coach seat to charge those all important phones and laptops.

We traveled to Eugene, OR then southeast to Klamath Falls before heading southwest to Dunsmuir, CA. We woke up north of Sacramento before sunrise. By 8:30 we were in Oakland at Jack London Square.

The track from Oakland south is not as smooth as the overnight portion; consequently, we did not travel as fast as other parts of the trip. On very good track the train is limited to 79 MPH.

We arrived at our station right on time and Craig picked us up.

I asked Clyda if she would do it again and she said “yes, but not right away”.

This truly was a “Great Adventure” which we had talked about doing for some time.

High lights of the trip for me was the Georgian Court Hotel in Vancouver, the float plane ride, visiting family, Mark and Candi, their daughter Dawn and husband Matt, and their son Michael and fiancĂ© Lizzy. Michael is a recent graduate of Washington State University and snagged a great job as a Civil Engineer. Spending time with Thomas and Debbie and enjoying Thomas’s great cooking is always a treat.

The trip came out just as we planned it.