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US Trip, Stage 2

Ok, so I’m now in Portland, Oregon after a short hop on the plane from San Francisco. The difference is pretty noticeable. First off, I was walking around San Francisco in a t-shirt most of the time and even that was pretty hot work. When I arrived in Portland, I could see my breath it was that cold! It’s great to see Dawn again, and Tom has come down for the weekend too so it should fun! Yesterday we drove up to Mount St. Helens in Dawn’s red Beetle. It was only about a two hour drive from Portland, and what an amazing place!! The views were outstanding. The whole place seemed so immense, although due to the lack of very much around, it was very difficult to get a sense of scale. I couldn’t believe that after the eruption back in 1980 that the mountain lost almost 1500 feet in height! That’s a whole lot of rock!

Before I left for Portland, my brother and I hired some transport to get us to Monterey Bay and a few other places that we couldn’t otherwise have seen. Muir Woods and Mt. Tam were the first stop, both stunningly beautiful places. The trees in Muir woods were BIG to say the least (although far from the tallest in the world). Perhaps the most impressive thing there was a segment from a fallen tree that dated back to 909AD. The rings were marked with historic dates such as the Declaration of Independence (which featured right on the edge) and the founding of the first Aztec city – quite a humbling thing! And the views from Mt. Tam of San Francisco and the surrounding areas were awe-inspiring.

Monterey Bay Aquarium was the next big stop and anyone visitng San Francisco has to make the 2 hour trip to the Aquarium. There’s obviously been a lot of money pumped into it and its all been put to very good use. The exhibits were amazingly varied and most of it was interactive, in really clever ways. Getting to touch a stingray was very cool too 🙂

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One Comment

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