May 29, 2012

Quote of the Post: "If you are real adventure and nature lover, A lifetime of discovery awaits here." Quote about 'Mount Rainier' - Sachin Kumar Gupta

There are a lot to write about and a lot to explore at Rainier! One can go for adventurous experiences, ranging from rock-climbing to hiking and mountaineering to summit. One can find the directions, operating hours in different seasons, road status, weather information, reservations and other information at the following link

Mt. Rainier is the highest mountain in Washington and the Cascade Range with 26 major glaciers. Apart from being famous for its beautiful tracks, snowfields and mountains, it also takes away the credit of being one of most dangerous Volcanoes in the world (Ref: Decade Volcano List). Sounds interesting. Isn't it! It being a major tourist destination, you can find adequate amenities for your trek, including map, the info broucher etc at the entrance. 
The scenic drive goes around 5 major points - Longmire, Paradise Point, Ohanapecosh, Sunrise Point and Carbon/Mowich Point.  It may be possible that not all the points are open during your visit. There are some picnic points, camping places, hiking points, and many trails and falls to explore. Skying and snowboardiing is shows-topper for the tourists. Be prepare for the weather change all the times. July and August is the best time to visit this iconic place. Mostly it rains here for the rest of the year with heavy snowfall from November to April. 

I started my journey with quite an enthusiastic group - Neelesh, Anil, Anvi and sweet kid (name), and their friends Hemant and Ashutosh. We entered from Nisqually Entrance and luckily got the free entrance passes that day. The first attraction was the beautiful Christine Falls lying below the rustic stone bridge, which glues you to the place for couple of moments. Next in line was Longmire. The beauty of the Nisqually Glacier was stunning and kept us mum during our move from Longmire to Paradise Point via Glacier Bridge. Our next halt at Narada Falls, was the photo session time, wherein we steped-up the snow hill & capture some views. To our surprise, we had Pao Bhaaji (best so far) at lunch. 

After that we continued to Paradise Point, famous for its glorious views and wildflower meadows. The inabrupt reaction to the view  from Paradise Point comes as "Am I in Paradise!" and hence the name. Near the parking area, You can enjoy the visitor center and double-fold your Paradise experience. You'll find some information and trip planning in the lobby and 20 min orientation film in the theater. We also attended a film session about Mount Rainier, and how it is related to life, and how powerful geologic forces keep the shape of the mountain. Don't forget the special exhibit on the upper level: "An Unquie Beauty: The Power and Presence of Mount Rainier." It explains how meadow flowers survive long winters and adopt record snowfalls. We enjoyed sometime here, and just went up to take a troll over the hills covered with fresh snow. At the roadside, points of interest are Reflection Lake and Inspiration Point.

All in all the day was an experience with amazing food, topped with the fun I had with all friends, Anil and family at Seattle. The Sun was about to say adieu for the day and we were on our way back to Seattle on the Glacier Bridge. We were compelled by the colours in the sky to stop over and take them along with us in our memories. Rest points, may be in next trip if possible. See you in the midst of mountain sometime. 

Other Places visited in USA:

A sunny day to ... San Juan Islands, Washington, USA.
Flight view of Golden Gate and Oakland Bay Bridge, San Francisco, USA.
Endless Landscapes ... Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA.
Night Life at Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.
Day Life at Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Universal Studios Tour, Los Angeles, California, USA
A snowy trip to Leavenworth, Washington, USA
Boulder Dam - Hoover Dam, Arizona - Nevada Border, USA
Tillicum Village, Blake Island Tour, Seattle, Washington

May 16, 2012

Quote of the Post: "You can't escape yourself without enjoying the slim, three legged lady dancer, when in Seattle". - Quote about 'Seattle Space Needle' - Sachin Kumar Gupta

Whenever I heard the word "Seattle", the dancing lady Space Needle, the lovely symbol of Seattle comes in the memory. This beautiful lollipop-shaped icon represents motivation, love, pride, and people's innovation. I have visited Seattle three times so far, every-time this slim, three legged dancer amused me. I roamed around the places and adored the beauty of Space Needle from different part of Seattle from time to time. I have more than 500 photos of Space Needle from different angels in different seasons. Hence, the post is named as "Colors of Seattle Space Needle".

During my latest visit, Space Needle celebrated its 50 years [April 1962 - 2012], that makes this post even more special. Originally it was built as a tourist attraction for city's 1962 World's Fair. The needle repainted to Galaxy gold at the top on its 50th birthday. I just enjoyed the natural views and bright emerald city lights from the top of the needle. 

When you are in, and up, enjoy the 360 degree observation deck. From this point, You can photoshooot the Downtown Seattle skyline with running vehicle over the streets. You can also get the glimpse of Mount Rainier, Olympic and Cascade Mountains, Mount Baker, Elliott Bay and surrounding islands. SkyCity, 360 degree revolving restaurant makes the landmark more special. This is the perfect place for dating, marriage proposal, reception, wedding of your lifetime memory. 

On my last visit, I toured, Tillicum village, Blake Island. This landmark was simply looking amazing during evening. The fountain place near Key Arena, is just another routine place to visit, from where you can adore the iconic beauty of Space Needle.

Before this, in 2009, i.e. at my very first visit to Seattle,  I was lucky to attend the Midnight fireworks celebration on the New Year's eve. This was an unforgettable experience when the fireworks were in sync with the music and rain. Lock cruise tour during the dusk along-with the Seattle skyline's panoramic view, was another opportunity for admiring this masterpiece. You be at 1st avenue, 2nd avenue or any other avenue or street in Seattle, Your eyes will kiss this icon. 

Some facts about Space Needle:
  • 605 feet tall (Equivalent to 60 storey building)
  • Original Cost: $4.5 million
  • Visited 1.2 million people a year
  • On hot days, the Needle expands about 1 inch
  • Approx 45 seconds to reach at the observation deck via elevators.
  • SkyCity restaurant rotates 360 degree in approx 47 minutes. 
  • Observation deck admission fee varies person to person. All ticket prices include a free SpaceShot photograph with variety of Space Needle backgrounds. You can send this to your family and friends from the observation deck kiosk, also upload it to Facebook account.

So far, The Space Needle has been appeared in many films, TV shows, art, entertainment and other works of fiction. No need to say, If you are visiting Seattle, You can't escape visiting iconic Space Needle

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