Monday, May 10, 2010

Lake Washington Ship Canal

We spent a wonderful day Saturday touring Seattle. The weather had given us a break, we were now enjoying warm sunny days. Our nephew Jonathan, his wife Allyson and son Sawyer joined us for the day. Jonathan proved to be an excellent tour guide. He has lived in the Seattle area for at least ten years, and Allyson grew up here. Our first stop was the canal and Hiram M. Chittenden Locks. The six mile navigation channel connects Lake Washington with Puget Sound. The dam and lock system at the west end of Salmon Bay raises the bay's level 21 feet. These locks are one of a few in the world which have a fish ladder where fresh meets salt water . As salmon migrate upstream to spawn they need to pass through the locks and dam, so in 1916 the first ladder was built for the salmon. There is a viewing gallery behind the ladder to see the fish coming through the series of steps. At present the large fish have already done their migrating for spawning and there are only fingerlings coming through. The time of the year makes a difference as to what size fish you will view here. Below is a picture of a part of the ladder. The fish that come in this ladder are shot through tails first. Looked a bit rough to me, but I guess fish are use to rapidly churning waters.
John and my brother Wayne took a tour of the locks. The rest of us were just happy looking out over the bay at the harbor seals, watching boats coming through the locks, and walking through the beautiful gardens located there. Sawyer, who is eighteen months old, enjoyed his freedom running over the grassy knolls. He never walks at a slow pace but enjoys running, so grass is better under his feet as his gait is still a bit unsteady. What a joy it was to watch him explore the gardens at his fast pace and to hear his chuckles of glee!  "More" is his favorite word now. From the canal gardens we drove to  Discovery Park. Here Sawyer found much enjoyment picking up shells and sticks. He also discovered that it wasn't much fun running over the rocks!
 Discovery Park is the largest park in Seattle with 550 acres. Here we could look out over Puget Sound, and view Mount Rainier off in the distance. In the picture below there were some fluffy white clouds covering the top of the mountain.
Wayne and I took some time hiking over the soaring seaside cliffs, through shady forest glens and flowering meadows. Quite a scenic place within an urban setting!  Jonathan felt that anyone touring Seattle needs to meet the Fremont Troll, an important landmark of the city. He was our next stop.This concrete monster is located under an overpass in a residential section of the city, on Troll Avenue. He is quite a tourist attraction, it was amazing to see the many people stopping to see him while we were there. That is a car under his left hand. We finished our day at a seafood restaurant by the wharf. It was a perfect ending to our day.

1 comment:

  1. Heard you on TIPOAA and you're the world's 2nd coolest mom! Hope you have lots of fun and adventures on your roadtrip! x