This past Saturday we returned from a quick getaway to Idaho. It was a very unusual couple of days! As you probably know, it's hot and dry here in the Pacific Northwest. Most people think all it does in Washington is rain. WRONG! East of the mountains the climate is very different, hotter in the summer and colder in the winter. The one constant, however, is "the mountain". Natives know THE mountain means Mount Rainier, but the strange thing is that you can see it lots of different places, like east of the Cascades on the way to Idaho.
Even though we are the Evergreen State, it's ordinarily dry in the summer, especially this one.
Lots of sage brush can be seen as well as many wind turbines and irrigation systems! When you reach this landmark, you know that you've crossed the Columbia and are on your way farther east.
The Columbia is a beautiful river and flows all the way to the Pacific Ocean. We were intrigued to learn that the first road was built way below along the edge of the river some time around 1918. That must have been a tough job!
We stayed in a condo at a ski area on Schweitzer Mountain. Not a trace of snow could we see, but the views were beautiful, especially on the night of the blue moon! You can see Lake Pend Oreille in the distance.
I got a lot done on a couple of my knitting projects when it was too hot to do much exploring.
It was fun checking out the nearby town of Sandpoint. We did a little walking, a little shopping and a little eating.
We found a great place for pie, and a nice yarn shop that was in an old train car! And then we drove part way around the lake.
But what we will probably remember most about this trip, is that our dear Mazda decided it was time for us to part ways. It started acting up on the way into town, that very first night, and by the next day we knew it wouldn't get us back home. Nor was it practical to get it repaired or towed back to Bellevue. (It served us well for almost 17 years and carried us over 200,000 miles!) Our plan when it was "time" was to donate it to a local charity, but here we were in a new place nearly 400 miles from home. Would you believe that within walking distance from the car rental place was a Union Gospel Mission church that gladly takes car donations to support women and children? It also has a car repair training program! I guess it was meant to be. And now you know what we will be doing this week in addition to taking care of the lug of peaches we picked up on the way home! (Little did we know when we took this photo, that it would be the last picture of our car.) We hope our trusty car enjoys its new life.