Friday, November 1, 2013

Of Floating Bridges and "Galloping Gertie"

Traveling on cloudy days is ideal—it’s usually cooler and there’s no sun glare no matter in what direction you’re driving.

And so it was when we left Sequim (WA), heading for Silverlake (WA). From US 101, we picked up WA 104…and soon after that sat at the side of the road for minor emergency road service.

The repairs completed, we headed across the Hood Canal on the William A. Bugge Bridge, a 7,869-foot floating bridge. It is the longest floating bridge in the world located in a saltwater tidal basin, and even though it has been around since 1961, I wish there were another word to identify the type of bridge it was, other than “floating.”
Picking up WA 3, we traveled to Port Orchard. Here we picked up WA 16 and soon reached The Narrows Strait of Puget Sound and the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, a pair of twin suspension bridges.
“Historically, the name ‘Tacoma Narrows Bridge’ has applied to the original bridge nicknamed ‘Galloping Gertie,’ which opened in July 1940 but collapsed because of aeroelastic flutter four months later, as well as the replacement of the original bridge which opened in 1950 and still stands today as the westbound lanes (Note: we were traveling in the eastbound lanes) of the present-day twin bridge complex” (
In Tacoma, we picked up I-5 and headed south. The Nisqually River Bridge was the third interesting bridge we crossed.
On this overcast, and now drizzly, day, we noticed little of the scenery through the clouds and rain, as we headed down I-5 to Castle Rock.
We then headed east on WA 504 to Silverlake and our next temporary home.

Here we caught some rare signs of fall. I say "rare" because compared to the hills of New England covered in color in the fall, the forests of the Northwest present a solid coat of pine green.

As we finished setting up the RV for our stay here, we were treated to this colorful sunset.

A colorful end to an overcast, gray day.

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