I think Chewelah is even prettier now than it is in the fall. Colorful blossoms, both tree and flowers, decorate the streets, lawns are SO green and mowed. Streets have a fresh clean look, (they did just have a full blown “clean-up day, every one was out.) I declared Chewelah a “Blue Ribbon Community” last year the story is in the archives.
Fran Genny has been kind enough to let me and my girls camp at her barn just blocks from the edge of town. Convenient enough for me to walk to stores, post office and of-course the library. I arrived April 17th after a full day of hauling. First a short skip with Ruth Ann Mclaury from Eureka, then a longer ride with Judith Hemphill from, Libby and finally a long ride with Gary Bellinger of Chelwelah. As most of you know I had ridden as far as Chewelah last fall…..from New York I might add. So I had no desire to re-ride the same stretch as I have ridden it several times in the past. I then rode home in late October and arrived in the Trego area mid November where I wintered over.
So here we are back out ready to finish this Odyssey, it does seem like it, two years, goodness, 8000 miles~ I leave in the morning riding Hwy 20 across the mountains to Samish Bay, Washington, south of Bellingham.
Besides resting and preparing for the finally leg of this ride the following photos will tell you what I have been up to this past week.
Standing behind Stan is Gary Bellinger who has been with-out doubt the most helpful person I could have asked for at this point of my ride. He’s helped facilitate not only my haul over from Sandpoint, Idaho but has gotten me to my talks on time, set up a small corral for the horses, taken me out on a scouting trip – scoping the route and has offered oodles of encouragement when I have most needed it. Thank you Gary! This is not a long stretch – 750 miles – from here to the west coast, but the road (hwy 20, will be challenging.) I rarely have help like this. I rarely let it be so. But this time it feels right to have so many people assisting with this final 8000 mile journey I embarked upon 2 years ago. Chewelah has assured me of a party upon my return in June. I am taking the same route over and back and will not be going up thru Canada as I had originally planned. The Long Riders Guild Flag will have ridden with me coast to coast when I arrive at Samish Bay. I’ll take photos of course as I did on the east coast.
SO tomorrow we ride. I know Essie and Spirit are bored and ready to go. Northeast Washington is spectacular county with breathtaking vista’s in every direction. It is the grass that so captivates me. It’s just so luscious, so green and thick I want to eat it like my horses, roll in it, run my hands thru it. The horses will eat well on this stretch.
Happy Trails, Bernice