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Coeur d’Alene

October 18, 2012

I have now been to 31 states!

Between my two weeks of teaching in Umatilla, I wanted to go exploring.  Ok, I needed to get out of town and have some “me” time.  So I looked at a map and decided that Coeur d’Alene, Idaho was the closest place with trees and water that wouldn’t be too far of a drive.

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Best.  Decision.  Ever.

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I had such a great time.  It only took about 3 hours and 20 minutes to drive there on Friday afternoon, so I arrived in time to have an awesome dinner at Fire, a brick-oven pizzeria.  It was hopping!  I sat at the bar, had a lovely glass of wine, and devoured almost an entire personal pizza.

The next day I went for a little hike around (and over) Tubbs Hill, with a view overlooking the lake.CIMG1739

There were lots of critters around.CIMG1738

While driving around that day, I had to stop on three separate occasions to let a deer walk across the road.

I then went for a drive along the eastern edge of the lake and stumbled upon Harrison, population 276.  I was going to stop for lunch anyway, since there were no other towns nearby, but I was thrilled to find their Oktoberfest celebration!CIMG1741

I had delicious kielbasa, kale (?), and green beans, prepared by mothers of the elementary school.  And of course I paid for a taster glass and four tickets for local beers!  I had a great huckleberry beer that reminded me of the Seadog blueberry ale.

Before continuing the drive, I walked off the beers on the rails-to-trails path.  I wish I had my bike!  I thought the history of the mining in the area was fascinating.CIMG1742

No mud pies!  The rails were covered with asphalt in part to sequester the metals – insane.

That night I ate at a cute Greek diner which made me miss Demo’s in Watertown like crazy.

Sunday morning I wanted to stick around for lunch at a place that was supposed to be really good.  I wandered around downtown, but not very much was open on Sunday morning, so I walked along the dock.CIMG1745

And got a chai tea with a bird on it at a hipster coffee place.  Seriously, some dude drew me a bird with a worm on my tea.  I enjoyed it with some Margaret Atwood.CIMG1746

And then I had lunch at The Garnet Café, which is really a breakfast joint.  So I got an omelet, delicious potatoes, and toast.  It was so. good.  The foodie in me had a really good time in this little town!  Overall, it kind of reminded me of being in NH or VT in the off-season, but much much smaller.

I drove back to Hermiston, but went out of my way to go to Bayview, on Lake Pend Oreille.  It was pretty, but there was nothing to do, so I headed back.CIMG1748

Of course then I missed my exit and didn’t realize it for an hour, so what should have been a 3 hour trip (well, 4 with my intentional detour) ended up being 6.  Fail.

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