Great American Road Trip: Part 7
August 10–12, 2018
My first arrival in Seattle was at Green Lake, where my new vanlife friend Francisco and I went for a swim and cooked some dinner. It was a Friday late afternoon, and many people were out for run or swim before beginning their weekend plans. We got to watch a kayak race across the lake and got invited to have some rooftop patio drinks with some people who lived around the corner. For those of you who have been following me on Instagram, you’ll know that this was just the start to our voyage together across two countries and two states.
After dinner, I went to meet up with my friend Hanes (whose wedding I was at a few weeks prior), who was hanging out in Seattle until he moved East to Montana. We met for a couple of beers, caught up on the previous couple of weeks, and made plans for Saturday.
On the Saturday when I was in Seattle there was a big 30th Birthday party for local record label Sub Pop Records (who have signed artists like Nirvana, Soundgarden, Fleet Foxes, The Shins, and more…). They set up a big free festival in the Alki Beach neighborhood of Seattle with four stages, some food trucks, and an expected 50,000 attendees. With so many people expected to attend the event, we decided that it would be easier to take public transport than to try to find parking in the area. Unfortunately, it took us nearly two hours with tram and bus to finally arrive at the Beach. We were in good spirits though, as the sun was shining and the beachfront offered beautiful views of the Puget Sound. We stayed for about two and a half hours, then headed back to the city for a beer and some sandwiches at one of Hannes’s old college stomping grounds.
On Sunday, Francisco and I decided to play tourists around the city. We started our tour at the famous Gas Works Park in the Fremont district — up on the hill with views of downtown over Lake Union. We walked along the water, picked some wild blackberries, and crossed the Freemont Bridge into the Queen Anne district. From here, you have to walk uphill about 100m elevation gain, then continue through the streets of Queen Anne. We stopped at Kerry Park, one of the most photographed spots in the city because of it’s proximity to the Space Needle and vantage point on the hill.
We stopped to take some photographs then continued on down the hill toward downtown and the Pike Place Market. After watching some fish tossing, fighting the crowds, and getting lost somewhere in the depths of the market halls, we stopped for a meatball sub at LoPriore Brothers Pasta Bar, then continued onto the REI flagship store. This place was huge, and even featured mountain biking trails and rock climbing walls. Now that our feet were good and tired, we shared an Uber with two other people and headed back to Gas Works. We arrived in time to see the sun setting over the Fremont Bridge (which was very orange due to the lingering smoke in the air).
After the sun set at Gas Works, we noticed some people dancing around with headphones on that were glowing blue and green. We joked to each other about how ridiculous they looked, then quickly realized that there were groups of people around the park with the same headphones on. Panning further along the park perimeter, we discovered that two DJs were playing sets, one DJ was in blue lights and the other in green. It was a silent disco! Francisco and I went over, got two of the wireless headphones, and joined in on the fun. It was great to listen to some good house music while dancing in the park with the city all light up in front of us. The perfect end to a great weekend in Seattle!