Our out-of-state adventure this year was to head west and explore Seattle. Before leaving on this expedition there were plenty of well-meaning acquaintances recommending things that we absolutely had to see; places such as Pike’s Market (it was okay), Pike Brew Pub (meh), and the Space Needle. Not being the kind of people who like crowds, we quickly crossed those items off our list then made our way towards the green spaces of the city. The son of one of our close friends resides in Seattle and he graciously agreed to spend some time with the “old folks”, recommending places to explore while guiding us through the transportation system. Our first stop was Discovery Park.
Discovery Park was exactly our idea of exploring a new area. Our guides led us through a number of trails within the park system that took us through several different habitats. The first portion of our hike went through a wooded section where one of our friends pointed out western sword ferns and other local vegetation which I quickly forgot.
Our meanderings eventually brought us to the information center where we picked up a trail map to better contemplate the best route to the shore. This path first went through some additional forested areas before depositing us in a field with views of the water and hazy images of the mountains beyond. Our friends proclaimed how spectacular the mountain views were on the clear days, stating that you could see Rainer, the Cascades and the Olympic Mountains from the city but we never did see them. During the course of the week our failure to see any mountains in the area became a running joke.
We crossed the meadow and a road before taking a trail towards the water. As the trail curved around up a small hill, we found a cleared area overlooking the beach below. It was here that I took my first fall, tearing the knees of my slacks and hurting my pride. Looking around, I noticed some small holes around the area (possibly from a child digging in the dirt). It was one of these holes that tripped me up and for whatever the reason I could not recover and just went down. I fell once more during this trip, with a near miss a third time, each time the result of an unevenness in the ground. The only explanation I could come up with is that when I am hiking in the woods I know the ground is uneven and therefore pay closer attention to what is happening on the ground as opposed to an area that by all appearances should have been flat (at least that is my story and I am sticking to it).
After my mishap, we continued walking by the shore until we reached the lighthouse at the western point of the park. From there we took a shuttle to one of the park entrances where we caught a bus back to town. Our two parties split up for a bit before regrouping at a local wine bar before dinner.