If you get the chance to visit the Pacifici Northwest you will find in the Seattle area a few large lakes.   Lake Washington is obvioulsy the one most people know about and for good reason.  Lake Washington is 22 miles long (at it’s extreme’s) it has a very large island in it’s middle (Mercer Island) and loads of people live on that, there are also a couple of major floating bridges that cross it, so it does tend to get all the attention.

While Lake Washington is big, there’s another lake between Lake Washington and Elliott Bay, Lake Union.  This lake is much smaller and is probably best know for it’s floating house boats, the subject of which appeared of course in Tom Hanks’ film “Sleepless in Seattle”.  Lake Union also has an official airport for sea planes, and if you go to it’s southern tip you can spend a lot of time watching planes take off and land – trust me it’s pretty cool.

If you do visit the southern point of Lake Union you will find South Lake Union Park (not very imaginatively named) and there you will find the Center for Wooden Boats. This is a small maritime museum that’s dedicated to the preservation and display of (wait for it) wooden boats.  This is actually a really cool place to visit, they have some great exhibits and loads of history and information about the boats on display.  You can also take a free public ride on a boat, learn to sail, rent a classic boat or take a boat building workshop!

While visiting myself I took loads of pictures, one of my favorites being this boat below.   Some of the boats there are in a poor state of repair but this one had been either really looked after or totally refurbished.  Now I’m no sailor but if I was I think I’d like a nice wooden sail boat with all the dark wood on the deck.  They look fantastic.

Carter had something in his teeth and Master Chief very kindly agreed to help him out.

I got home this evening and again didn’t know what to post so I had dinner and headed out with the camera.  I didn’t have any idea where I was going but the sun was going down so I followed that.  I didn’t want to head to Seattle again as it was getting late so I drove down to Kirkland.  I parked up in Marina Park and got the camera and tripod.

It was pretty warm out still and there were a load of people walking outside enjoying the evening and the sunset.  There were loads of really nice opportunities to shoot images and I got a few nice shots.  I love shooting water at night but if there are boats on the water they tend to be a little out of focus.  They are bobbing up and down on the water and at night I have to have a long exposure so there is a load of motion blur. That said, I think moonlight and street lamps on water look really nice.

The image I chose to post tonight was a shot of the water front along the small beach.  By shooting towards the large gazebo I got a lot of light on the water and the sky facing west (so you just got the end of the sunset above).  Interesting as I was shooting with long exposures the people walking past didn’t appear in any of the shots as they kept moving and didn’t stay still long enough for the camera to pick them up.  So very little work to do in Photoshop.

Master Chief saw some dog treats and asked to try one, Carter said he had to play dog first.

Wednesday’s are a bad day for me lately.  I get to work at 7:30 and stay here until gone 9 at night.  So I really don’t get much time to take a picture and post it.

So to overcome that I now get two pictures on Tuesday (clever eh?).  Then all I have to do on Wednesday is write something about the image and I’m done.

So last night I drove to Seattle and photographed the Seattle Boat Club (not to be confused with the Seattle Yacht Club that is in a totally different place).  After shooting that image I went looking for today’s picture.

I was driving sown Lake Washington Boulevard and I saw the I90 Bridge all lit up.  It was pretty dark by this time so they had these red lights along the bridge, and loads of traffic headlights and stop lights on the bridge itself.

So I found somewhere to park and took the image below.  When I took this I was a little worried it may be a little boring as the sky on the back of the camera didn’t look that great.  But when I got home I was pleased with the image.  This was I think a 10 second exposure (or something like that), so you can see the lines of lights from the cars on the bridge.

I managed to get some cloud detail in the sky so it looked ok.  Not bad for a Wednesday image.

Tonight Cater and Master Chief wanted a Caesar Salad, so we made them make it themselves!

As you drive home to Redmond from Leavenworth you go west and take highway 2 towards Steven’s Pass with the Wenatchee River on the right.   Before you start to climb up to the Pass you go through Tumwater Canyon and come across Jolanda Lake.  This is an amazingly scenic Canyon and the Lake is just beautiful.

To the north of the Lake are some pretty big rapids and to the south you find the Tumwater Dam that throws the water down a man made waterfall that used to power an old hydro-electric plant.  The Lake seems so tranquil, you’d never know there was so much going on at each end.  Right by the Lake is the Alps Candy Store.

Chris and I stopped to take some pictures of the lake and grab a drink.  We went into the store and they asked us if we wanted to buy some fudge.  It appears that the store made their own fudge and had every flavor imaginable.  I thought I’d better get something for the kids so I tried some “orange cream” fudge that was so sweet it made my teeth hurt – it was disgusting!  But I got some anyway as the kids would love it – and they did.

Apparently this lake looks even better in fall when the trees change color, so I’ll be going back then.  Hope you like the image.

I think the Halo guys are making a statement to all our women readers.  They were quite passionate to get this message across, personally I have no idea what they are on about!

I’ve posted on the blog about Lake Union before and talked about the Houseboats on the lake, but I haven’t uploaded any pictures of them.  Until now.  I was in Gasworks Park taking some pictures of downtown Seattle when I saw these homes moored on the water front.  (I hope the owners don’t mind I took these).  Anyway I thought I’d take some pictures.

The water was quite rough so they were moving all over the place and there was great cloud cover in the sky (that I think added to the picture).  As you can see some of the homes are painted bright colors and some are definitely bigger than others – remember, you don’t pay house tax if you’re on the lake so these homes are highly desirable as they’re close to the city and low cost to own – although you can pay a lot of money to buy one.

The Bridge you can see behind the houseboats and below the clouds is the George Washington Memorial Bridge (or more commonly called the Aurora Bridge).  This is a huge cantilever bridge that links the Queen Anne and Fremont districts of Seattle together.  It’s actually a very cool bridge in it’s own right so well worth another visit for a future picture of the day.

The guys decided today to carry out some stealth training.  Some Canadian Geese landed outside my office and Halo and Master Chief decided to creep up on them.