Freeway Park in Seattle was added to the National Register of Historic Places two months ago on December 19th, 2019.
That’s great news and is important for the future of the park, but I have to admit that reading about it gave me an odd feeling. I think of national historic places as being actually old, like buildings from the 1800s.
Freeway Park is still a sorta new park in my mind because I remember it being built when I was a teenager living in Edmonds. If it’s now historic that means I’m getting old!
My aunt and uncle who live in Ellensburg took a two and a half week vacation to New Zealand at the end of November and beginning of December this year. My regular readers know I house sit for them when they go away on longer trips. That way I get a vacation with free lodging and they get someone to look after things.
Saturday, November 9th was my Aunt Pat’s 80th birthday. She lives in a large suburb of Boise, Idaho, and a family gathering was planned for the weekend to celebrate the milestone, including my cousins I hadn’t seen in several years flying in from Denver and Boston. (Another cousin conveniently already lives there.)
I wanted to attend, but the drive from Seattle to Boise and back is slightly over 1000 miles. The trip one way usually takes about 8.5 to 9.5 hours depending on traffic, weather, and number and length of stops you make. If you put the pedal to the metal, don’t run into any slow downs, and only take one or two quick potty breaks you can make it in about 7.5 to 8 hours.
Either way, I just don’t have it in me to do long drives like that in a single day anymore, especially with no one along to help keep me awake. (My sister and nephew flew down for only one night, and my mom and stepdad took their RV for a trip to Arizona afterwards.) Even at my best I never enjoyed that many hours on the road in one stretch.
I decided the only way I could do it with my various limitations was to make a road trip out of it. I hadn’t been in south central Washington or northeastern Oregon since family camping trips in the early 1970s, so it would be like driving through those areas for the first time.
This post is the first in a new series about things that happen in the sky. This topic relates to parks because city, county, state, and national parks are often the best places to go to observe or photograph stuff in the sky.
For Part One I am providing suggestions for apps and links to websites in a variety of categories. You have to know when and where things are happening in order to go see them and these resources help with that. The tools are particularly useful for photographers.
Upcoming posts will have tips for when you might want to use specific sites and apps, where to go, and details about chasing the aurora borealis.
Many of the links below take you to pages for Seattle. But once at the site you can enter a zipcode (postal code) or name of a town to find the info for your part of the world. Once you’ve done that, I recommend bookmarking the site if the info looks useful to you. I have all the links sorted into my Sky Stuff bookmarks folder in a web browser so they are easy for me to find and use.
All apps listed are free unless otherwise noted.