Sunday, August 31, 2008

Warwick Castle Courtyard View

These are the living quarters inside Warwick Castle, much of this is a later addition - when society uppity-ups lived here. This view is from Guy Tower. There is a sign at the base that warns there are 300 steps to the top so be sure you are fit enough for the trip. The sign did not specify that the steps were the size of a piece of cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory, in a winding stairwell that only one person could possibly use at a time, and most of the stairs were in total darkness. Once you start up, you can't go back down unless there is no one behind you. Guy Tower and the coordinating Caesar Tower are war fortresses, with lots of arrow keyholes. I love it that much of the countryside is still farmland.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Silly Relatives

One of these two is a relative of mine. You can guess. More of our adventure at Warwick Castle in Warwick, England. We spent hours here. Next, I'll show you the view after climbing one of the towers. The towers are true medieval, and it's true that I wanted to go back down before I got to the top - but it was not an option.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Revisiting our England Trip

I'm going to share photos of our trip to England earlier this year, since we're not going to be traveling much for a few weeks with school underway. We took a lot of pictures of old buildings because here in the U.S., we just don't have any buildings this old - unless they are Native American artifacts or crumbles of structures. This is Warwick Castle. The first section (not this view) was started around 1080. This is the entrance and it's creepy. This whole castle was built as a war machine. The entrance has lots of "murder holes" - where boiling water was poured on those not welcome, or they were shot with arrows. Once inside, the cheery courtyard made the place more friendly.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Multnomah Falls

This is Multnomah Falls. You can see this right along I-84 in Oregon, and it's a nice rest stop - including a restaurant and gift shop. There is also information about Native American legends about the falls, including how if you look at the water just right, you can see a young woman. There are also pictures of a wedding on the bridge when a huge chunk of rock fell from near the top. You couldn't even see the wedding party through the resulting splash. Amazingly, no one was hurt - they just got wet.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Stormy Weather

Not much beach-playing time on our visit to the Oregon Coast this year. Squalls and storms are prevailing. We still like the cooler weather and even feeling cold. We know at home in Boise it's hot and we'll be sweaty again Thursday night.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Haystack Rock and a Sea Garden

The "greenery" in front of Haystack Rock in Cannon Beach is called a sea garden. It's full of all sorts of creatures that I can't identify, along with ones I can - like starfish and mussels. Volunteers bring out education boards and put up sandwich boards letting people know what areas they should avoid walking on so creatures aren't damaged.

Hello Starfish

This little stray starfish was peeking out of a tidepool in front of Haystack Rock. When the tide is out, there are hundreds of starfish tucked against the rocks at their base. Rainy and cool here on the OR coast, and it feels refreshing.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Deadman Pass - Rest Area?

More like final "rest area?" This is an exit off I-84 while traveling over the Blue Mountains. This is also along the Oregon Trail - which goes through Boise, too. Elevation here is about 4,000 feet.

The Columbia River - Close Relative of the Boise River

This is the Columbia River - which we'll continue driving along to Portland today. We're in Hood River, Oregon - a hot spot for windsurfing. And with high temperatures in the 90s today, I'm sure they'll be out. The Columbia and the Boise River are connected. The Boise runs into the Snake River, and the Snake feeds the Columbia - which ends at the ocean. Our drive here was hot even with air conditioning in the car. It was 104 in several spots in Eastern Oregon. Multnomah Falls and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry are on our "to do" list today.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Time for a Road Trip

We'll be heading for the Oregon Coast this weekend, and sharing our journey here. This is the only "road" photo I had in my stock of pictures. Heading this way would be the wrong way to Oregon, in fact, exactly the opposite direction. This picture is on the road heading East into Boise. We'll head West out of Boise.