Interstate 84 winds along the Columbia River, wedged between the water's edge and some dry, sometimes rocky, sometimes rolling, hills.
|Interstate 84 heading east from Hood River, along the Columbia River.
After grabbing some coffee downtown, we hit the interstate and left the green, fertile valley of Hood River behind. It was about three miles outside of town, with the dead, brown/gold grasses blowing in the wind, barely clinging to the soil, when the true dryness of the area really hit me. Was the lush Hood River Valley, just a manufactured reality of smart irrigation? If so, why does this bother me?
|The dry countryside outside of Hood River.
|A farm along Highway 730.
|The countryside outside of Walla Walla.
|Downtown Walla Walla
"Room for cream, sweetie?"
"Do you want a straw, honey?"
"Is that going to be all, sweetie?"
"Here's your change, honey."
"Bye sweetie, have a good day!"
The guy was creepy. He was not just the older gentlemen polite guy, he was creeping me out and I couldn't get out of there fast enough. On top of that, the coffee was a small step better than most gas station coffee water.
|Charles Smith Tasting Room in Walla Walla.
Leaving Walla Walla we drove through amazing, huge, rolling hills of golden wheat like I have never seen. We drove through tiny little Washington towns with quaint downtowns and well-kept historic districts. It was inspiring to see the pride in the small town life.
|Outside of Walla Walla
Eventually, we crossed the Snake River (I think) into Idaho, which led us into the Clearwater National Forest, along the Lochsa River (I think) and over the Bitterroot Mountains. It is a beautiful, wild place and the river was so intriguing that we had to stop in order to try to lure Poppy into the shallow waters. She was hesitant, but tip-toed cautiously into the water to gingerly pull her ball from the river.
|Highway 12 in Idaho.
|Poppy in the car.
|Beers and later, dinner, at Tamarack Brewing Co. in Missoula.