Friday, June 28, 2013

Industrial District, Riverview and Highland Park Neighborhoods of West Seattle

Today's 12.6 mile walk in West Seattle took me through three neighborhoods and to many parks.

Starting near the Alki Trail and a marker that welcomed me to Pigeon Point, I walked east and south until coming to the Duwamish Trail and West Marginal Way SW at the Riverside Mill building and the Riverside Memorial.

The memorial is on a small plot and is dedicated to the immigrants (mostly from Croatia) who settled here in the late 1800's and early 1900's.

At this point, the Duwamish Trail runs along West Marginal Way and I walked south until I came to the Port of Seattle's Terminal 105 Park and Duwamish Public Access. This Park is a habitat restoration site and offers great views of the river.

It has a picnic shelter and a hand boat launch. Small boats are warned that the Duwamish is a busy river and that large ships and tugs have limited sight maneuverability - small boats should steer clear of these larger vessels.

Across West Marginal Way, I spotted the Parks Department's facilities maintenance shops and operations division. Just a little further south, I came to Herring's House Park which runs quite a distance along the Duwamish and offers views of Kellogg Island.

The park houses the Yankee Clipper Shore Base, a 5/8 sized replica of the frame of the halibut boats used in this area. Signboards provide a history of the area starting with the Indian villages once on this site, the fisheries that were located here and the immigrants, bootleggers, squatters and counter-culture boat builders who settled here.

The Port of Seattle had planned to build a marine terminal here but archeological remains were found and now it's a park which really appeared to be used by the community. Across Marginal Way, there is a Duwamish Tribe Longhouse.

Across from the southern end of the park, I came across Puget Way SW and climbed the hill to find a small community of neat homes with large yards. Back down on the Duwamish Trail again, I came to a railroad crossing with a clever sign which really made me look both ways before crossing the tracks.

The rest of the walk south along the Duwamish Trail had me passing industrial sites (the Ideal Cement Company proudly displayed the safety award it won from the Portland Cement Association). Levity was introduced by an espresso shop shaped like a ship.

After walking as far as Michigan Street, I veered onto Highland Park Way and climbed the hill noting the West Duwamish Greenbelt and a small community of neat homes accessible via SW Othello Street.

Turning west onto Holden, a sign welcomed me to the Highland Park neighborhood. I walked north around Riverview Playfield and north to South Seattle Community College and then onto the campus but school did not appear to be in session. I will be returning to visit the Seattle Chinese Garden.

Just north of the college, were a few newer homes, one with some stylish yard art.

Walking north to Puget Park, I discovered another nice community along 18th Avenue SW.

21st Avenue runs along the west side of Puget Park and offers an entrance to the West Duwamish Greenbelt walking trails. I'd already walked 12 miles so I skipped the trails today.

It was a hot day and I was ready for a cold drink after this walk.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Industrial District

It was drizzling today so I decided to walk in the Industrial District, thinking that this area probably looks the same in any weather. That is most likely close to being true but I noted two exceptions.

When it has been raining, there are puddles in the potholes (like these along, what the street sign on Lander indicated was 7th Avenue S, but didn't look much like a street to me).

In the spring and summer, some properties benefit from the fact Seattle is a great place for trees, shrubs and flowers like these I spotted at the Metro building,

around Metro's Central Base Vehicle Maintenance yard,

outside the Washington Alarm building,

in a parking strip

and in the nice courtyard outside the Seattle Public Utilities building.

That object that looks like a huge barrel is a piece of wooden pipe from the Cedar River pipeline. Its outer diameter is 7 feet and it was in service for 55 years.

I passed a lot of warehouses and trucks on my 5.6 mile walk but I also passed the Seattle Public Utilities Water Quality Laboratory, a Pacific Food Importers building,

a mural on the side of the Mercedes Benz of Seattle (which looks to have a modern building next door),

an Office Depot, Emerald City Trapeze Arts, murals along the rail tracks

and decorated utility boxes.

At Holgate and Airport way, a young man was climbing a stairway onto the overpass. He said that he gets his exercise climbing those stairs everyday. I plan on using that overpass in a future walk.

I really appreciated the attempts to beautify this area - they made my walk more pleasurable.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

North Admiral Neighborhood of West Seattle and Jack Block Park

The highlight of today's 7.7 mile walk in West Seattle was definitely Jack Block Park. I have been to other Port of Seattle Parks; some were OK and some were pretty nice but Jack Block Park is very, very nice.

Don't stop when you you get to the first section with its play area, picnic tables and flagpole.

Climb the small hill behind the flagpole and walk along the path taking you to the view tower.

Enjoy the views along the way.

Sit on a bench and enjoy the Seattle skyline, then turn around and view the Port in action - you can even read about container shipping. A plaque in the park notes that Jack Block was the longest serving commissioner in Port history and a pioneer in public shoreline access for our community. This park in a fitting tribute.

The rest of my walk was mostly around the Duwamish Head Green Space.

Streets bordering the green space have a rural feel and some properties have old buildings and old autos.

Some have room for vegetable gardens.

Along the way, I walked on the Alki Trail which took me to Salty's on Alki

and a shoreline access point.

Along Harbor Avenue SW, I noted a few businesses, a large apartment/condo complex

and a proposed and use action sign proposing to rezone the area just south of Salty's from industrial general 2 and urban industrial to industrial commercial and urban stable.

The streets north of Admiral and east of Fairmount were quiet and tidy with lovely homes and views.

This was quite a walk.