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Mt. RAINier

October 19, 2012

The second week of my GK12 assignment flew by, even with laryngitis.  I met up with the rest of the UO crew in Pendleton for a teachers’ workshop on Friday.DSCN0270

It was a lot of fun!  Chocolate chip liquid nitrogen ice cream is awesome.

Sarah and I have a “bucket list” of things to do in the Pacific northwest before we graduate.  Most of my contributions involve mountains.  I can’t believe I’ve been here for four years and haven’t been to the major volcanoes, so I booked us a room at the lodge at Mt. Rainier for the weekend after the workshop.  We knew it would be a quick trip with a lot of driving (I would be going back to Eugene and Sarah was going back to La Grande to finish up her GK12 trip), but the visiting seasons are so short that we knew we probably wouldn’t make it back at any other good time.

We had been blessed with a sunny, beautiful September, as well as the first two weeks of October.  But that Friday, for the first time in 3.5 months, as we were demonstrating the ring flinger, it rained.

So Sarah and I drove our separate cars in the rain to Washington.  We stopped in Naches for dinner because we thought it would be the last town near civilization.  Such a bad decision.  I’m still kicking myself over this one.  We pulled over at a random bar, figuring we could get good quick, cheap bar food.  Wrong, wrong, and wrong.  We were there for an hour, waiting for the worst pizza I’ve ever eaten.  I couldn’t even eat it, and left hungry.  The crust was cardboard, the onions were raw… I feel like I’m being harsh, but I can eat some pretty bad pizza.  This was terrible.  We shared the only size they had, but still only ate half, so a guy at the table next door offered us $3 for a slice because he didn’t want to order a whole pizza.  We gave him 2 slices.  He said it was the weirdest thing he’s ever done.

By the time we left it was dark, still raining, and the road immediately got tiny and windy.  We each clutched the steering wheel for the next few hours, unable to even change the CD we had to concentrate so much.  Plus I was afraid the desk at the lodge would be closed if we got there past 10 pm, and we couldn’t reach them by phone.  When we finally pulled into the parking lot and the door was unlocked, I was so relieved.CIMG1772

Relieved to find styrofoam slippers, that is.


I slept like a rock in our tiny room with two twin beds (how cute!).

The next day we had a great breakfast, then headed out to hike.  It was only lightly raining when we left, so I was still hopeful that we would get to see the mountain.CIMG1773

(I guess Seattle is not paradise.)

We had a really great hike up a steep ridge.  There were deer and a whole flock of these birds.CIMG1781

Sadly, we never did see Mt. Rainier.  I don’t think it was really there at all.


But the fog and the spots of bright fall color were so pretty.CIMG1785


We dried off before driving around as much of the park as was open for the season and not under construction.


Christine Falls!


We ate our PB sandwiches in the car with this view:CIMG1792

And then headed back to the lodge to spend the rest of the day relaxing and watching The West Wing.  It was so nice not to have to go outside for dinner!

I thought it was a worthwhile trip, but it would have been nice to actually see Mt. Rainier, since that was the main reason for this bucket list item.

One Comment leave one →
  1. kunama permalink
    October 20, 2012 7:08 am

    So nice of them to name a waterfall after me 🙂

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