Lime Kiln Lighthouse

Lime Kiln Lighthouse on the west side of San Juan Island, Washington

Lime Kiln Lighthouse on the west side of San Juan Island, Washington

Lime Kiln Lighthouse on the west side of San Juan Island, Washington

Lime Kiln Lighthouse on the west side of San Juan Island, Washington

Lime Kiln Lighthouse on the west side of San Juan Island, Washington

Friday, June 19, 2015

No. 311 Father's Day Aviation Events

Father's Day Aviation Events

Historic Flight Foundation
West Side Paine Field - Everett, WA
10am ~ 5pm

3rd Annual Biplane Weekend Friday June 19th ~ Sunday June 21st.

Saturday will feature speakers, live music, demonstration flying and period displays. Throughout the weekend HFF will host the Commemorative Air Force historical presentation “Rise Above,” an inspiring tribute to the Tuskegee Airmen offered in a transportable theater. B_T_PHOTOS_September 05_ 2010_IMG_0001.DNG-76WACO UPF-7 N32019 

Flying Heritage Collection
East Side Paine Field - Everett, Wa

Pacific Legends Day/ Fathers Day
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Take dad to Paine Field on Father’s Day weekend to see the Flying Heritage Collection’s amazing aircraft take to the skies. Father and son teams Steve and Steven Hinton, along with Bud and Ross Granley, will demonstrate the legendary aircraft of the Pacific War—the P-51 Mustang, F6F Hellcat, P-40 Tomahawk, and the rare Mitsubishi A6M Zero.

Watching the flying demonstration is always free, but why not make the day of it? Museum admission gets you entry for special events and lectures, a free pilots’ autograph signing session, and an up-close look at some of the rarest and most valuable vintage aircraft and vehicles in the world!

Doors open at 10 am, planes fly at noon!

FHC Mitsubishi A6M3 Zer0FHC F5F Hellcat 

Collings Foundation "Wings of Freedom Tour"
Flying Heritage Collection
Paine Field, WA
 B-17 Walk Through Tour Times (no reservations needed):
6/19/2015 – 2:00 PM till 5:00 PM
6/20 – 6/21/2015 – 9:00 AM till 5:00 PM

Collings Foundation B-17G " Nine-0-Nine" Heavy BomberCollings Foundation B-24J "Witchcraft"

Thursday, June 18, 2015

No. 310 Washington State Classic Car Shows

Washington State 2015 Classic Car Shows 

May 22, 2015 - May 23, 2015
34th Annual Moses Lake Spring Festival Open Car Show - Moses Lake, WA
May 23, 2015 - May 23, 2015
11th Annual Spring BBQ Hot Rod Gathering - Palouse, WA
May 30, 2015 - May 30, 2015Corvettes on the Columbia - Kennewick, Wa
June 5, 2015 - June 7, 2015
All Corvette Car Show - Anacortes, WA
June 6, 2015 - June 6, 2015Waterfront Festival Open Class Show _ Anacortes, WA
June 7, 2015 - June 7, 2015VETTE-A-BRATION _ Yakima, WA
 June 12, 2015 - June 14, 2015ATHS Columbia Basin Chapter Antique Truck Show Richland, WA
June 13, 2015 - June 13, 2015El Camino/Chevelle Show - Snohomish, WA
June 14, 2015 - June 14, 20153rd Annual Pit-A-Billy Car Show - Seattle, WA
June 20, 2015 - June 20, 2015Rakers Car Club 12th Annual Car Show - Port Townsend, WA
June 20, 2015 - June 20, 201510th Annual Fenders On Front Street - Issaquah, WA
June 21, 2015 - June 21, 2015Gear Heads Father's Day Car Show - Bellingham, WA
June 21, 2015 - June 21, 20152015 Blessing of the Cars! -Tacoma, WA
June 21, 2015 - June 21, 2015Fenders on Front Street - Issaquah, WA
June 21, 2015 - June 21, 201522nd Annual Cool Desert Nights Car Show - Richland, WA
June 25, 2015 - June 28, 2015Eastside Parkway Pile-Up Car Show - East Wenatchee, WA
June 27, 2015 - June 27, 2015Flying Eagle A's Model - Vancouver, WA 
June 27, 2015 - June 27, 2015
Hot Rods, Hot Dogs & Motorcycles - Bothel, WA
June 27, 2015 - June 27, 2015
2015 Mukilteo Classic Car Show - Mukilteo, WA
June 28, 2015 - June 28, 2015

Rat City Rodz Hot Rod Block Party
 _ Everett, WA
July 11, 2015 - July 11, 2015
10th Annual Camas Car Show - Camas, WA
July 11, 2015 - July 11, 2015

No. 309 Whale Watching Recap Video

Tuesday June 16th, 2015
Anacortes, WA

The orcas had no shortage of energy today as they awoke from their nap and began to put on a show for the ages!!!


A large group of deer just outside Cap Sante
Multiple mature bald eagles all around
Harbor seals hauled out in multiple locations
J,K, and Lpod along the western shore of San Juan island

Naturalist log

As the IE3 left the dock this morning the wildlife started out fast and furious, with a large group of black tail deer taking advantage of the low tide this morning. They slowly strolled along the exposed rocky shoreline looking up occasional at the IE3 as it passed. Two small fawns followed their mother up in the grassy lawn of an Anacortes home where they stopped for a rest and the boat was able to get some amazing looks. Suddenly a mature bald eagle came soaring in overhead making its way over the trees toward the city of Anacortes!!!!

As the IE3 exited Guemes channel and entered into Rosario strait a slight roll began to come in from the south. With that captain Carl aimed the IE3 west into the heart of the San Juan islands and the protected waters that lay inside. A Washington state ferry passed by as the IE3 entered into Thatcher pass and was joined by a turkey vulture and 2 more bald eagles. This was a good sign and as sea birds like the rhinoceros auklet and the pigeon guillemot dove deep for their morning meals guests began to head into the galley to enjoy Eli's good cooking.

The IE3 made a nice slow up through Pole pass where it got good views at a great blue heron that was hunting in the now shallow waters off of Orcas island. The sun was high no, the waters were calm and so the IE3 pushed further west in search of glory. As it got to Battleship island another eagle was spotted perched in a  tree near a large nest!!! Dozens of harbor seals were also seen just off the port side basking in the days warm sunny rays!!!!

Captain Carl continued to drive the IE3 south where it was joined up by a large group of Kpod whales. At first the whales were spread out but as the IE3 got on scene the whales grouped tightly together and went into what seemed like a resting pattern. Multiple fins rising high out of the water together was certainly a sight to see as you could feel the true majesty of these animals. The Kpod group was south bound and so was the IE3 when a large group of whales was spotted ahead and the excitement began to build!!!!

Who were these whales and what was going to happen when these groups met? Well it turned out to be Jpod and at first the two separate groups were oblivious to each other. Suddenly something triggered a young Jpod calf to get excited. In the distance a whale spy hopped high above the water to spot the still south bound Kpod and as soon as it did the fun had begun!!!! Multiple whales breached and some even began to porpoise toward Kpod in order to catch them. As this happened a few of the elder females in the group began to slap their flukes at the surface, trying to quill the upcoming surge of baby orca energy, but it was too late!!!!

Soon whales were breaching and spy hopping left and right, and it was becoming difficult to track where the action would happen next. The whales were definitely happy to see the IE3 and the magnificent people who were on board!!!! As the whales neared Lime Kiln lighthouse though distance was extended due to regulations and agreements with the light house and park area. That made no difference as the whales continued to party and to wave goodbye as the IE3 had to depart, but that did not mean the show was over.

As the IE3 reached False bay captain Carl spotted another couple of whales, it was a few members of Lpod out fishing in a very fast flowing current line!!!! We had some brief looks at these whales as time was already short from the previous show and once again we departed scene headed east. The seas had begun to pick up but it meant nothing to the hardy group onboard the IE3, some folks were even riding out the waves on the bow and taking the occasional salt bath!!!!

It was truly an amazing day packed full of wildlife the entire trip, one that won't be soon forgotten!!!!

Saturday, May 2, 2015

No. 308 2015 PNW Air Show Event Calendar Dates

2015 Air Show Event Dates

"HFM" Heritage Flight Museum 
Base: Skagit Regional Airport - Burlington, Washington

"HFF"  Heritage Flight Foundation
Base: KPAE West Side Paine Field - Everett, Washington

"FHC" Flying Heritage Collection
Base: KPAE East Side Paine Field - Everett, Washington

"OFM" Olympic Flight Museum
Base: KOLM Olympia Regional Airport - Olympia, Washington

"VAM" Vintage Aircraft Museum
Base: Concrete Regional Airport - Concrete, Washington

All dates subject to weather, aircraft and pilot availability. Please visit the host websites for current status updates prior to events

Date           Location / Host               Event                        Possible Aircraft Flight Demonstration 
March 21   Skagit Regional / HFM  Fly Day                T-6s Formation
April 18     Skagit Regional / HFM  Fly day                 T-6s Formation
May 9th     Paine Field / HFF       Battle of Britain      Spit Fire, Hurricane
May 16th   Paine Field                 Aviation Day           DC-3, Staggerwing, Chinook, Blackhawk, P-47,                                                                                     F6F, IL-2
May 16th   Skagit Regional / HFM       Fly day          T-6s Formation
May 25th   Paine Field / FHC       Tankfest                 Bradley Fighting Vehicle, M1 Abrams, B-25
June 19th   Paine Field / HFF      Biplane Weekend    Staggerwing, Travel Air, Waco
June 20th   Paine Field / FHC      Pacific Legends      P-51, F6F, P-40, A6M
June 27/28  Olympia Airport / OFM     OLM Air Show      FG-1D, P-51, T-6, C-45
July 4th      Paine Field / HFF                                      Static Displays Car Show
July 9/10    Arlington Airport       Fly - In                    B-25, Biplanes, Aerobatics
July 18th    Skagit Regional / HFM       Fly Day          T-6s Formation
July 17/19   Hillsboro, OR           Oregon International
July 24/25   Concrete 3WS/ VAM        Concrete Fly In
July 25th    Paine Field / FHC      Sky Fair                  Mig 15, F-86, DC3, P-47, B-25, A6M
July 25th    Boundary Bay            Bay Air Show        B-25, F8F
August 7/9 Abbotsford, BC        International Air Show   B-25, P-51
Aug 15th    Paine Field / FHC      V-Day                    P-47, P-51, F6F
Aug 29       Paine Field / FHC     Luftwaffe Day        B-17, Bf109, Fw 190, Storch
Aug 29       Felts Field / HFF        Neighbors Day      B-25, C-45
Sept 4/6      Paine Field / HFF      Vintage Aircraft Weekend
Sept 19th    Paine Field / FHC      Battle of Britain      Bf 109, Spitfire
October 17  Skagit Regional / HFM    Fly Day            T-6s Formation

Friday, March 13, 2015

No. 307 Colorful Public Gardens around the Sound

Univerity of Washington Cherry Blossoms 2014University of Washington's Liberal Arts Quadrangle
Liberal Arts Quadrangle Cherry Blossoms
4182 NE Stevens Way, Seattle, WA 98105

One of the most popular places in Seattle for gazing at the bloom is at University of Washington's Liberal Arts Quadrangle. The original grove of Yoshino Cherry trees were planted in the Seattle Washington Arboretum around 1939. Later during construction of the 520 floating bridge 31 Yochina Cherry Trees were transplanted to the University of Washington campus. That makes this grove of white and pink fragrant cherry trees 75 years old. The average lifespan of a Yochina Cherry Tree is between 60 to 100 years.

Continue Reading about the Quad

Seattle Japanese GardenSeattle Japanese Garden
1075 Lake Washington Blvd E
Seattle WA 98112

Opened to the Seattle public in 1960 the Seattle Japanese Garden celebrates 52 years of educating and inspiring visitors from around the world about the art of Japanese miniature idealized landscapes and garden design.
The garden located in the southwest corner of the University of Washington Botanic Gardens at Washington Park Arboretum, along Lake Washington Boulevard E., features over 100 types of plants, trees and koi ponds in a 3.5 acre gated area.

Continue Reading about the Japanese Garden 

Kubota Garden Foot Bridge
Kubota Garden
9817 55th Avenue S.
 Seattle, WA 

The Kubota Garden is a 20 acre asian style garden on a hill side in a south Seattle neighborhood that was started over 60 years ago by Mr. Fujitaro Kubota. After immigrating from Japan, Mr. Kubota a self-taught landscape and gardener built his landscaping business and soon began to plan and construct his vision of the Japanese-style garden on his private property in 1927. Continue Reading about Kubota Garden 

Nishiyama Japanese Nishiyama Japanese Garden
Everett Community College
90 Westmore Ave
Everett, WA

The Nishiyama Japanese Garden at Everett Community College represents a compressed world of mountains, forests, lakes, rivers, meadows and village. Access to the garden for self-guided tours is provided at no charge on days when EvCC classes are in session and on special occasions.
The garden has eleven primary elements, each with a quiet message of its own. These include entry gate, entry area, waterfall, stream, tea garden, rock garden, Tsubo garden, side gate, stone bridge, earthen bridge, Iwakuni wooden bridge, and stucco masonry wall with tiled roof enclosing the entire garden site.  
Continue Reading about the Nishiyama Garden 

Evergreen Arboretum & GardensEverett Arboretum
145 Alverson Blvd
Everett, WA 98201

Evergreen Arboretum & Gardens is both a place of beauty and education and is free to the public. Located on 3 ½ acres in Everett Washington, its ten themed gardens include the Urban Tree Walk, Entrance Garden, Rock Garden, Northwest Native Plant Trail, Rain Garden, Japanese Maple Grove, Northwest Demonstration Garden, Viewing Mound, Woodland and Conifer Gardens as well as the 200' Snohomish County Master Gardener's Demonstration Border and sculptures throughout. 
Continue Reading 

Pacific Rim Bonsai Museum
Pacific Rim Bonsai Museum
2515 S. 336th St.

Federal Way, WA 

The Pacific Bonsai Museum features outstanding bonsai from the Pacific Rim nations of Canada, China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan and the United States.
Weyerhaeuser Company opened the Collection in 1989, in conjunction with the Washington State Centennial celebration.

Morning Rows YellowsSkagit Valley Daffodils
Mount Vernon, WA

For last 2 weeks the fields around Mount Vernon and La Connor, Washington have been seeing sign of spring. The daffodil fields are close to being in full bloom with many acres covered in rows upon rows of yellow speckles. It is definitely worth the trip to spend the afternoon driving through the floral route.
Daffodils are one of the early spring bloomers and you will want to go sooner than later. By end of March, early April and weather or wind blow off the tops of the Daffodils.

Continue Reading
Bellevue Botanical Garden Bellevue Botanical Gardens
12001 Main St, Bellevue, WA 

Bellevue Botanical Garden is a botanical garden located at 12001 Main Street, Bellevue, Washington. It is open daily; admission is free. The garden area includes display gardens, woodlands, meadows and wetlands

continue reading 

Monday, March 9, 2015

No. 306 San Juan County Park Campground

San Juan County Park

San Juan Park Road
Friday Harbor, WA 98250

San Juan County Park is located on the western side of San Juan Island along the shore of Smallpox Bay. Its is both a day use and overnight campground taht features a gravel beach inside Smallpox Bay, a boat ramp, 20 campsites spread over 12 acres, Picnic Tables, Fire pits and seasonal water and toilets. Its a popular canoe and kayak launch area for paddlers. 
A variety of wildlife can be scene from shore such as eagles, otters, herons, and the occaional orca whale passing by on their way to Lime Kiln State Park 
San Juan County Park is equal distance from Roche Harbor or Friday Harbor about a 25 minute drive. 
The peak park visitor season is from May through September. To make a reservation check out the parks website

San Juan County Park
Smallpox Bay, San Juan Island
San Juan County Park
Fallen Tree 
San Juan County Park

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

No. 305 Lime Kiln Lighthouse State Park

Lime Kiln Point State Park
1567 Westside Road
Friday Harbor, Wa 98250
Hours: 8am to Dusk


Lime Kiln Lighthouse State Park

Lime Kiln Point State Park is located on the western side of San Juan Island. The 36 acres state park features over a mile of trails that wander down to the waters edge and through a grove of pacific madrone tree to the Lime Kiln Lighthouse. Beginning in the 1860s the west side of San Juan Island was quarried for lime stone and a good portion on the island was deforested to feed the fires that transformed limestone into lime, which was then used in construction mortar.
A shoreline viewpoint is about a 10 minute walk from the parking lot. The rocky shoreline plunges to over 900 feet in depth quickly. Through the daily tidal currents from Haro Straight into the Gulf of Georgia nutrients rich waters are pushed up against the island attracting a variety of marine life to congregate just off shore including fish, otters, sea lions, seals, minke whales and orca whales that come to play in the kelp beds and hunt for salmon.
Depending on the time of year Lime Kiln Point is a popular land based whale spotting location.

Lime Kiln Lighthouse is a 38 foot octagonal building built on a rock cliff 20 feet above the waterline and the fourth-order Fresnel lens was first light in 1919. The lighthouse tower was built atop of a fog signal building. In 1951 the Bonnevile Power Administration laid a submarine power cable from Anacortes, WA to San Juan Island and the Fresnel lens was replaced by a non-rotating electric bulb, and two electric foghorns were installed. The light station became fully automated in 1962.
In 1984 the lighthouse station and grounds were turned over by the United States Coast Guard to  Washington State Parks. The USCG still maintains the lighthouse tower as an active aid to marine navigation, but the building is used by the Friends of Lime Kiln Society as an Interpretive Center for Special Events and Tours.

Discover Pass: An Annual Discover Pass or a Day Use fee is required for vehicle access to the park for day use. No over night parking

Lime Kiln State Park

Lime Kiln Lighthouse State Park Lime Kiln Lighthouse State Park Lime Kiln Lighthouse State Park Lime Kiln Lighthouse State Park Lime Kiln State Park

Saturday, February 28, 2015

No. 304 Cattle Point Lighthouse

Cattle Point Lighthouse
Cattle Point RdFriday Harbor, WA 98250


Cattle Point Lighthouse

Cattle Point Light is a lighthouse on southern tip of San Juan Island in an area known as Cattle Point, in the Haro Straits of Washington. The first navigational aid on Cattle Point was a lens lantern established in 1888. George Jakle, a soldier who had been stationed at American Camp and had remained on the island raising sheep, was paid to maintain the light. Jakle would tend the light each day and fill the lantern's reservoir each week, using kerosene from five-gallon barrels that were offloaded at nearby Griffin Bay every couple of months by a lighthouse tender. 
A radio compass station was established at Cattle Point by the Navy in 1921, and sailors serving there took over maintenance of the light. Using bearings from that stations at Cattle Point, New Dungeness Spit, and Smith Island, ships sailing through the Strait of San Juan de Fuca could pinpoint their location even in dense fog.
The modern 34-foot (10 m), octagonal, concrete tower on Cattle Point was erected in 1935. The lighthouse is located adjacent to the Cattle Point Natural Resources Conservation Area, which is managed by the State Department of Natural Resources, so a Discovery Pass is required for your vehicle. Parking is available near a picnic shelter housed in an old powerhouse, leftover from the Naval Radio Compass Station. Trails lead from the conservation area's shelter to the lighthouse.

Monday, January 19, 2015

No. 303 2015 Washington State Discover Pass Free Days

Washington State Parks and Recreation turns 102 this year.
List of 2015 “Discover Pass Fee free days” in 2015 when visitors are not required to display the Discover Pass to visit a Washington State Park. 
  • Jan. 18-19: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
  • March 19: State Parks' 102nd birthday
  • April 4: Saturday Spring Day
  • April 22: Earth Day
  • May 10: Sunday Spring Day
  • June 6: National Trails Day
  • June 13: National Get Outdoors Day
  • Aug. 25: National Park Service Birthday
  • Sept. 26: National Public Lands Day
  • Nov. 11: Veterans Day

In 1913 Washington State legislature creates the Washington State Board of Park Commissioners. The first two were formed from donated land in 1915 : The John R. Jackson House, a pioneer heritage site near Chehalis, and the Chuckanut State Park. In 1947 the State Park Committee was renamed to the Washington State Park and Recreation Commission and given the authority to oversee the state park system, purchase land and collect fees. 


As of June 2011 there are 117 State Parks covering 138,000 acres which includes uplands, lowlands, aquatic and marine life areas. The Washington Department of Natural Resources owns an additional 3,000,000 acres throughout the Evergreen State. 
If you plan on visiting and exploring Washington State-managed land this year outside of the Fee Free Days you will need to have a Discover Pass. Fine for not displaying the pass is $99. 
Here is a list of some of my favorite State Parks 
Click on the links below to learn more about each park

North Sound State Parks

Bay View State Park 

Western Washington

Seattle Area State Parks

Southern Washington