By MICK HOLIEN
If you have never been across the North Cascades, it’s a trip you just have to make as much like the Treasure State one encounters the nuances of small-town life in a variety of different scenarios.
But my last trip between the Seattle area and Spokane presented a few less than normal situations mainly because Highway Two actually was closed to sll but emergency traffic.
Hold on as we make the trip almost four decades later.
I wasn’t going to allow the mere eruption of Mt St. Helens to curtail my customary trip to the ABC Tournament.
And after discovering that the power that be had no idea how to deal with the ash that curtailed driving seemed bound to shut down I-90 for an extended period I started looking for another way to return to the Lilac City in order to start my trip to Louisville.
I thought about trying Canada but there really is no near the border highway and opted instead to travel north from Seattle and give the north Cascades route a try even though it also was advertised as closed.
But after circumventing an initial manned barricade it was down the road in my little blue Luv pickup through the wheat farm country of northern Washington where roadways were completely covered with a light grayish dust that we were told was dangerous to breathe and hazardous to vehicle engines.
To my pleasant surprise I encountered little law enforcement and in most cases only met inquiring residents to either was hosing or sweeping this alien dust that no one seemed to know how to disseminate.
Thus down the road headed over Stevens Pass through towns like historic Leavenworth, Almira, Rearden, Davenport, Wilbur and eventually to where the highway meets I-90 at the top of Sunset Hill where the barricade was manned and officers not allowing anyone further down the road.
Undismayed since I was at the time working at the Spokesman-Review I quickly produced my business card and explained I needed to get the film in the back of my pickup to the newspaper.
Busted – let’s see the film he inquired. How dare him I thought realizing the bowling balls in several bags were not going to pass for film.
Explaining my trip and dilemma the trooper politely explained I was not going down the freeway – but where there’s a will, there’s a way.