Thursday, April 4, 2013

A drive on Hwy 20

Yesterday we decided to go for a drive up highway 20.  We have done this drive about once a year since we moved here, which has been 5 1/2 years now, so we're pretty familiar with all the stops and sights along the way.  We were planning on driving to Diablo, which is this weird little "town" just before the road turns to go up the steep part of the mountains.  It is inhabited by employees of Seattle City Lights, and only one time that we've been there have there been signs of life.  That was last fall I think, yesterday when we got there all the houses that were inhabited a few months ago were vacant and deserted looking.  It is so odd.

Anyway, this time we pretty much stopped whenever we saw a place we thought was interesting looking.  Usually we stop once or twice along the way, but this time we stopped at least 6 times total.  I didn't get pictures of all the places we stopped (like the cool waterfall on the side of the road), but I took a bunch at the places I did think to get out my camera. =)  Here is a picture tour of our day minus a few stops.

This is at the fish hatchery.  Damian was feeding Coho salmon.  The tank behind him had Steelhead trout, which they said were going to be released into the Skagit river next week.  Every time we've stopped here the people are super friendly.
Maddox was fascinated by the water.  He tried to get in so many times.  I had to take many pictures to get this one because every time I backed away to take the picture he would try to slide down the slope to the water.  =)
He loved that "waterfall."
Damian invited a friend to go with us.  That kid is 14 and already 6'2" . . . Chris calls him Tiny.  =)
This was down a really steep embankment that I'm really lucky we didn't fall down because it only had less than a foot of shoreline before going straight into the river.  Maddox loved throwing rocks into the river.  He really, really wanted to get in the water, and the rock throwing was the only thing that stopped him from pretty much just plunging in.  I took a dozen pictures trying to get one of him throwing the rocks, but didn't get even one of him actually throwing it.
Damian's friend's family goes gold mining and he was showing D and Chris how to do it.  =)
Maddox was trying to climb this pole.  He was soooo funny, he was even making grunting sounds.  =)
Chris showed him a handstand so he was trying to copy Chris.  I showed him a somersault after this picture and then he was trying to do that. 
We went on this "hike" (on a very well maintained trail) that we had gone on the very first time we had ever been on this type of drive.  I remembered the trail being very long and being very tired and winded by the time we got to the end of it.  It wasn't long, it wasn't hard. =)  Chris said it was easy because I'm not as fat as I used to be (yes, he used the "f" word).  Maddox isn't sleeping in this picture we were touching the moss on the rocks, I didn't realize his eyes were closed or I would have taken another picture.  =)
The three of them took off and Maddox and I did our own thing, looking at the rocks and the trees and plants we passed. 
D would kill me if he knew I was sharing this picture.  They were pretty tired, D's friend was sleeping too but from my angle I couldn't get the three of them in the picture. 

We also stopped at another small community for Seattle City Lights employees (there are lots of dams on this part of the river and they mostly feed electricity to Seattle).  Chris and I went on another hike that we had never been on before and it was pretty cool.  It had some plaques with some of the history of the forest area.  This was one of those areas that I didn't think about taking pictures.  I wish I had my camera though.

Another area we stopped at was a State Park that we used to camp at.  They closed the camping portion of it a few years ago to protect the old growth forest.  We didn't do a lot of exploring at that spot because it required a pass we had to pay for.  But like I said we camped there before so we had already explored some of the trails there.  However, I would like to go back to that park and do some hiking there again, it was pretty cool several years ago.

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