Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Expoloring Vancouver Washington: Waterfront Renaissance Trail

Here's the Water Resources Education Center. We parked there but I didn't go inside.
I've been out exploring my home town of Vancouver, Washington. My favorite place is along the mighty Columbia River. Usually I hit the Waterfront Renaissance Trail near the I-5 Bridge and walk east. But today I wanted to do something different. So we started at the Water Resources Education Center which is much farther east than I have ever gone on the trail. And I was glad I did!
Here's the fountain and the big solar panel.
You access the Center by driving east on Columbia Way. It's a great place for learning and just walking around sniffing and exploring. The first thing I noticed was a fountain and a huge solar panel next to it. I found out that with an hour of full sun, it can light 10 100-watt light bulbs. It was sunny so I thought it might be working away. The Center was closed so we walked around the grounds.
Here's the Kaleidoscope. It was too high for me so I sniffed it!
This is what my owner could see. She spent too much time looking at things here!
We saw something really unusual. Was it a telescope? Nope, it was a kaleidoscope focusing on a little dish garden of succulent plants. It was my owner's favorite thing to see but it was too high for me to reach. So I sniffed around the base while she had all the fun.
Here I am looking out toward the wetlands. I thought I might scare a frog or two there.
After that, it was time to head out on the trail. We stopped at the wetlands and looked out over the Columbia River. Sailboats were out. It had been stormy and the boats had to stay home for a couple of days. But today, the sailboats were out in all their glory. I love the colorful spinnakers!
Oh no! This was really scary!
When we were looking for birds in the wetlands, I spied a measuring stick. It went from way down on the shoreline up to where we were standing. I found out that was the height of the 1996 flood! I am glad I wasn't there during that flood. It must have been really scary!
Oh No!
Finally, we trotted down the trail. But we didn't get very far at all. You see, the Mighty Columbia River had done some damage to the trail. Part of it ahead was eroded. So we had to take a detour. Crumb! Repairs are now underway on one of two sections of Vancouver’s popular Waterfront Renaissance Trail in the Tidewater Cove area, which were closed to the public after high water undermined the trail’s foundation in 2011. 

This is the view from Tidewater Cove!

It could have been worse. The trail could have been closed. But instead we took the sidewalk along the road to get to Tidewater Cove. I didn't like that part of the trail but the cove was really neat. There was a dock with a boat moored and a walkway out to the point. I went all the way out on the point and saw a bench to sit on. It was donated by Kelly Puteney, a real trails and parks advocate. Thank you Kelly!
Here I am on Kelly's Bench
I basked in the sun and watched the sailboats on the Columbia and the planes taking off from the Portland International Airport across the river. 
Soon it was time to move on. We walked by some beautiful new condos. From the third floor, two black labs barked at me. I think they were jealous that I was out exploring the riverside. I was excited to see what was next.
Here's the condos where the dogs barked at me!
It wasn't a very long walk until we came to Wintler Park and A BEACH! I think that would be a great place to run and play. The Columbia River was lapping at the shore and I decided not to go wading. 

It started clouding up so we turned around and headed back down the trail, retracing out steps. We quickened our pace for sure. By the time we got to the car it was just starting to rain. Good thing we headed back when we did!

I think I want to go back, especially to Tidewater Cover. I love sitting on Kelly's Bench at the end of the walkway watching the river and the air traffic. What a great place to visit!

Someday I might take the whole 5 mile walk along the Waterfront Renaissance Trail. (or maybe not)
But if I do that, we have to have a ride back because 10 miles is definitely too much for this Coonhound! 

Love, Cinnamon the Vancouver Coonhound

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Thanks for your comment. Love, Cinnamon