This site last updated on  31-Jul-2003
A view from the plane The trip in the NW began with a visit to Canada, specifically, the ski resort of Whistler. This is a wonderful place to visit in the summer, and it looks to have some excellent skiing in the winter. However, do save your pennies, 'cause it is not cheap. The first day I went on a Float plane ride over the Pemberton Ice Cap, supposedly the nearest Ice Cap to Alaska! This is a view of an area that must have snow most of the year, though it cannot be permanent, because of the trees.
Me at the top of Blackcomb  I took a trip to the top of Blackcomb Mountain in the Whistler/Blackcomb resort. That is Whistler behind me. In the way up on a series of chair lifts and a bus, I saw a mother Black Bear and her cubs, and also a very large Marmot. There was still a lot of people skiing, though mostly schools for training advanced skiers.
The Sunken Garden  The next stop was Victoria on Vancouver Island, the capitol of British Columbia. My Aunt Jean and I visited the beautiful Butchart Gardens. This is a picture of the sunken garden. There is also a lovely Japanese garden, and the old aviary has been turned into a wonderful display of Rose Begonias.
 To see the pictures and stories, click on this picture, and it will take you to a 4th July page.
 I have been spending a couple of weeks with my Aunt Jean in Gig Harbor. A beautiful town at the south end of the Puget Sound. The most startling feature is the way Mt Ranier suddenly rises to over 14,000 feet above the Sound. Quite spectacular. The view from Jean's deck is pretty neat as well. The mountain range on the background is The Cascades
 The trip to Eastern Washington was to a resort called Sunbanks Resort. I had so much fun there, and took so many pictures that I have created a second page. Click on the picture to go there.
I thought my family would like some views of Alison's home, so you can click on the image to see the front of the house. Click here for a view of the picket fence at the front. And here for a view of the back yard from the tree fort. Finally, to make up for missing the 4th July picture, here is a picture of all the girls. Natasha, Narissa, and Brissy the Australian Sheepdog
On 24th and 25th July Jean and I went around the Olympic Peninsular to see some fantastic scenery. This is a panoramic view from the top of the ridge I climbed. It will take 4 mins to download at 28.8.kps, but is worth the wait. It was quite an energetic walk which took 2 hours to cover just 4 miles, of which 1,600 feet was straight up! I was even above the snow at one point! I saw a Chipmunk, but it was too quick for a photo! But this beautiful Mountain Lilly was not! Jean allowed a photograph of her with the beautiful scenery as a back drop. We also visited a Rain Forest. At the point we visited they had up to 150 " of rain per year! They have huge Western Red Cedar trees. I also learnt about how fallen logs act as nurseries for new trees, and how this affects the roots. Here is a row of trees growing off a still discernable log, followed by an older tree with the nurse log having gone. The forest was like something out of Lord of the Rings, with all the hanging moss. Finally, on our way back, we stopped for lunch at Kalaloch, where I could walk on the beach.

The final part of the trip in the North-West included a visit to a Native American Resort called Kha-Nee-Ta. It is in the High Sierra's in Eastern Oregon. We "enjoyed" temperatures reaching 110 deg. F, or 43 deg C.!!! It was really too hot to do anything, except swimming. The scenery is stunning. Desert brush sage, so very stark, but this view from our room gives you some idea of the terrain, but gives you no idea of scale. I recommend a visit, but avoid July and August. As we left, I managed to get this view of the valley.