Day 74 Omak, WA to Chelan, WA 54.9 miles Total 3648.6 mi

Pyrocumulous clouds

I learned about these clouds on NPR yesterday, and Hank pointed them out from the parking lot.  When a forest fire burns, superheated air over the fire rises. The moisture it contains condenses into droplets and creates the "fire clouds."  Unfortunately, they are thunderheads but the dry air below causes the rain to evaporate before it can reach the ground.  So the result can be dry lightning, and possibly start more fires!   

Morning sky over the Colville Indian Reservation.  Just the sun rising.


Steve left around 6 am, following Old Rt 97.  The Okanogan River winds beautifully along.  Still hazy and the smoke is visible to the north.

Steve found it necessary to pull his neckerchief up over his mouth and nose for several hours.

I was enjoying the scenery when I happened to look to my right and did a double take.  Along the top of the mountains there was an ENORMOUS array of what looks like satellite dishes.  I stopped to take a picture, but the smoke was an effective screen. (Or maybe it was ghosts because I took the picture across a cemetery.) So I have borrowed an image from the internet. Apparently it is a VLBA, or Very Long Baseline Array, a 240 ton radio telescope with a dish 82 feet across.  It is part of a range of scopes that produce images 100 times more detailed than anything the Hubble Telescope can do!  Fascinating!

More scenery of the Okanogan River and the ride to Chelan (pronounced shell ann)

Once in Chelan, I decided it was important to visit at least one of the 30 wineries near by Lake Chelan.

The host told me they are having some kind of paragliding competition here and that there are often lots of them in the air.  I only saw one, and that was when I was driving. 

I convinced Steve that the Siren Song Vineyard Winery would be a good place for an early supper. He indulged me, and was glad he did.  Soft sunshine, mild breezes, fabulous vistas and view, as well as great food and wine.


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