Lynden - Northwest passages: riding out the storm - CycleBlaze

July 4, 2020

Lynden

Yesterday

Just a brief note about yesterday, on which I sat out but Rachael took a vigorous 12 mile hike to Lake Whatcom, mostly along hiking trails that took in Whatcom Falls.  She came back dripping wet but full of enthusiasm for our new home and the many possibilities it seems to offer.

I hadn’t really meant to sit the day out.  In fact, we both started out for a bike ride in mid-morning but immediately turned back when we found it was raining out.  As Rachael often reminds me, we should trust the weather report outside our window more than the one on our iPad.  After that we sat around reading for several hours, and by the time the weather improved enough for Rachael to go out, I was nodding into a nap.  I slept really poorly last night because of a sore shoulder (I think I strained it lugging our luggage down to the car when we left Corvallis), and was just as happy to catch up on some lost sleep.

Before we leave the day, I want to share this photo that delighted me this morning.  It’s our governor, Kate Brown, having a friendly chat at the governor’s mansion with three well spaced, very attentive state police who dishonored themselves in Corvallis the day before by defying the new statewide mandate and refusing to wear their masks in a coffee shop.  It ended well, with everyone agreeing that masks are really a pretty wise idea after all.

I really like our governor.  Later, on her Facebook page she stated that she’s more concerned with saving lives than firing people.

So are we all in agreement then? Masks are a requirement.
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Andrea BrownI like Kate too. These guys got off easy.
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Andrea BrownI doubt it, although they do still have jobs apparently. As Frank pointed out to me, they undoubtedly had an interesting encounter with their superior before this meet-up.
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1 month ago
I’m with Kate!
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Scott AndersonTo Jen GrumbyScott’s plaid.
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1 month ago

Today

It’s the Fourth!  Rachael charged me with finding a quiet route that would keep us well away from the crowds, so I give it my best shot and draw up a fifty mile (one for each state!) loop northeast of town, along both banks of the Nooksack.  For the most part I did pretty well, and the roads I’ve chosen are generally very quiet.  We do see a bit of congestion in Lynden, a small riverside town near the Canadian border where folks and flags are lining up along what is presumably a parade route.  And then we see a lot of congestion back on the west side when we bike past the Lummi fireworks stand again and the traffic is bumper to bumper for a few hundred yards with cars pulling into and exiting from the parking lot.

Other than that though it’s a very quiet, very pleasant ride but with few dramatic sights today.  But flags - lots of flags.  Happy Independence Day!  We don’t feel much like celebrating the state of our nation today, but hopefully by this time next year we’ll be well along on our recovery.

Video sound track: Fanfare for the Common Man, by Aaron Copland; performed by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra

In the back alley, leaving home. The lying forecast says it will start out partly cloudy and improve as the day goes on.
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Eastbound on Central Road, dropping toward the Nooksack.
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Crumpled.
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One of a half dozen well preserved small tractors we passed today.
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Bob DistelbergI grew up on a farm, and first learned to drive a tractor on a little Ford just like that!
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Bob DistelbergI’m envious. I’ve always been a city boy, but I would love to have hopped up on a tractor as a kid.
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1 month ago
Looking east across the Nooksack from Central Road.
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On Central Road.
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On Mission Road, near the Nooksack Tribal Center. The terrain here on the west side of the river near Goshen is more scenic and contoured than further downriver where the land flattens out completely.
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Roadside totem on Mission Road, near the Nooksack Tribal Center.
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Crossing the Nooksack, at the entrance to Everson. I was surprised to see the river flowing north toward Canada here. It hadn’t registered before that it takes a large bend before turning southwest again.
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In Everson, a modest farming and logging town on the banks of the Nooksack. Like nearby Lynden, the town is heavily influenced by its heritage of Dutch settlers. We’re just passing through today, but I’m sure we’ll be out this way again before the month is out.
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The corn rises from the flood plain north of Everson. On a fairer day I imagine the views here are spectacular, with snowy Mount Baker rising behind the ridge.
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Must be chow time, for them to be congregated like that.
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In Lynden, another Dutch-heritage town we’ll probably revisit. Surprisingly to me, at population 15,000 it’s the second largest town in Whatcom County.
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Lynden shows its recent roots. Going back a bit longer though, this was of course the home of the Nooksacks. Lynden sits at roughly the site of the former Nooksack village Sqwehálich.
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Parade day, Lynden. Look at those bright smiles! No need for masks, this close to the Canadian border.
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Steve Miller/GrampiesJust be sure to talk, sneeze and breathe facing south please.
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Steve Miller/GrampiesYou should be OK. It’s four miles as the crow flies from Lynden to the border, so even under the most pessimistic models that should be adequate social distancing.
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1 month ago
True believers, Lynden. Our current president held a political rally here in the run-up to the last election.
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In Lynden. Interesting that the Straggler looks almost white here. Perfect.
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South of Lynden and across the Nooksack again, the route turns erratic.
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Uh, oh, I’m in trouble thinks me as the pavement unexpectedly ends. It’s quite a nice, rideable surface though and the pavement returns a mile or so later. Everybody’s happy.
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Looking southwest across the flood plain toward Lummi Island, wondering what’s happened to those clearing skies we were promised.
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Missing a few slats.
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For the fourth and last time we cross the Nooksack, just past Hank’s Ill Eagle fireworks stand.
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Ride stats today: 50 miles (one for each state!), 1,400’

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Jen GrumbyLooks lovely up there. And the Aaron Copeland makes it inspiring as well.
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Jen GrumbyIt is lovely. We’re rapidly growing fond of this place. We were really pleased with the Copland overlay too. Looking back at the day, we ended up feeling more hopeful about our country than we have for awhile.
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1 month ago