The journey has begun! Today was the final day of school at Liberty Christian for the 2015-2016 academic year. There was lots of activity throughout the campus with some performances, classroom parties, the last high school chapel, and preparations for a school tradition- the year-end all-school picnic. The front of the campus was set up with a water theme this year: there were slip-n-slides, kiddie pools, and water guns. When school was dismissed at 11:30am, the fun really ramped up! A hot dog linch and water play extended into the afternoon. What a great way to start the summer break for the students and families!
At about 12:45, a lot of the students and parents took a moment to gather around my bicycle and me. The Principal, Mrs. Bjur, said a prayer over my trip and it was a a great way to start my first pedal strokes, having the students cheering and clapping as I rode out.I left the school campus and headed east, crossing over the Columbia River on the I182 bridge and riding a portion of the Sacajewa Bike Trail through Pasco, riding along the north shore of the Columbia. I skirted along the edge of Sacajawea State Park, where Lewis and Clark spent a few days camping on their way to the Pacific. It is located at the confluence of the Snake and Columbia Rivers. I headed inland to cross the bridge over the Snake then turned south again to the Wallula Gap.
Just before crossing the Walla Walla River,I came to the site of Ft Walla Walla. It is now underwater due to the construction of the McNary Dam, but was a main trading post for the fur trade and pioneers from 1811-1855.My route then turned east and started rolling gently through wheat fields. The Blues Mountains slowly got larger in the horizon- I will be traveling through them in the next few days. Nestled at the bottom of the western slope is the town of Walla Walla, my destination for the night.I am staying with the West family; they are friends from California that moved to Washington shortly after we did in 2014. I was their daughters’ Principal years ago and we share a love for cycling, a fellowship in our faith, and a connection due to our move to the Northwest.
The things you see along the side of the road-
- life preserver- bright orange of course. I debated putting on for higher visibility but kept pedaling by…
- hub caps…always lots of hub caps
- a Washington State license plate
- A crib mattress and a pink blanket
- lots of birds hit by cars 😦 … And plenty of live ones- I had to navigate through a flock of geese along the river; outside of Lowden I was attacked by a black bird that I’m sure had a nest nearby!