A Landing a Day

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Posts Tagged ‘Palouse Falls’

Dayton, Washington

Posted by graywacke on March 24, 2009

First timer? In this once-a-day blog, I have my computer select a random latitude and longitude that puts me somewhere in the continental United States (the lower 48). I call this “landing.” I keep track of the watersheds I land in, as well as the town I land near. I do some internet research to hopefully find something of interest about my landing location. To find out more about A Landing A Day (like who “Dan” is and what the various numbers and abbreviations mean), please see “About Landing,” above.

Dan – Well, I landed in the “State of Snake” today. Odds are, I landed in ID, right? But we all know that odds are funny things, because I landed in . . . WA; 39/39; 5/10; 18; 165.1.

Two new rivers, the Little Tucannon, which flows to the Tucannon, which, of course, flows to the Snake (61st hit); on to the Columbia.

Here’s my landing map:


And a broader view:


First, a little landing business. Remember a while back when I changed my thinking about 4/10 USers being good? Well, I’m now to the point where I have to move the whole concept up to 5/10. If I average 4/10, my Score no longer goes down. (If you read “About Landing,” it says that 4/10 is a positive USer rate that will result in a lower Score.)

This all has to do with the ratio between the OSers and the USers. For years, that ratio was about 4/10 for USers. As long as that was the case, my Score moved down more for USers than it moved up for OSers. But now, the ratio is about 50/50 (notice all of those former WBers?), and the score moves up and down about equally.

If you don’t have a clue what that’s all about, don’t worry.

Back to my landing. As you can see, I landed near Dayton. From the town’s website:

Rich in history, this area was originally explored by Lewis and Clark who camped on the Patit Creek just east of Dayton on their return in 1806. At that time Dayton’s Main Street was a racetrack for regional Indian Tribes. The first settlers in 1859 and by 1872 the town had been platted, named, and the post office was established.

Between 1880 and 1910, prosperous businessmen (including Jacob Weinhard who founded a brewery) and farmers built themselves large impressive homes, commercial, and public buildings. Today 90 of these are on the National Register of Historic Places and include two districts.

Dayton boasts the oldest train depot in the state (1881) and the oldest working county courthouse (1887). Both have been lovingly restored to their original splendor. Natural wonders such as Palouse falls and the Blue Mountains are within an easy drive.

Here’s a picture of the above-mentioned Palouse Falls (with the caption below):


Out in the middle of what some people consider “nowhere” is Palouse Falls. The Palouse River wanders among wheat fields, cattle ranches and dry canyons until it suddenly takes this plunge over basalt cliffs.
Here are pictures of the train depot and the courthouse (with captions below):


The Dayton Train Depot was built in 1881 and is the oldest surviving passenger train station in the state. The Depot has been beautifully restored and is now a museum.


Columbia County Courthouse was completed in 1887 in beautiful Italianate architecture at a cost of $38,069.00. This building is the oldest working courthouse in the state.

Here’s kind of an interesting photo (caption below):


I saw this on a steep embankment west of Dayton, Washington. Dayton’s major employer is the Seneca Foods asparagus cannery. Seneca Foods is part of the Green Giant Foods company and the Jolly Green Giant is its logo. So, they constructed a 300-foot high Jolly Green Giant on a steep embankment west of town which was too steep to be farmed, even by Dayton area farmers who are known for some of the most vertically farmed land in the country.

So, The Tucannon River. Here’s a picture of the Tucannon River at it’s mouth – That’s the Tucannon flowing in to the Snake from the top of the picture:


Surprise, surprise . . . Lewis and Clark were here. From their journal entry of May 3, 1806:

We set out at an early hour, and crossed the high plains, which we found more fertile and less sandy than below; yet, though the grass is taller, there are very few aromatic shrubs. After pursuing a course N. 25° E. for twelve miles, we reached the Kinnooenim [Tucannon River]. This creek rises in the southwest mountains [Blue Mountains], and though only twelve yards wide, discharges a considerable body of water into Lewis’s river [Snake River], a few miles above the narrows. Its bed is pebbled, its banks low, and the hills near its sides high and rugged; but in its narrow bottoms are found some cottonwood and willow.
I never realized that the Snake was called “Lewis’s River.” I thought that Meriwhether did most of the writing, but evidently Mr. Clark wrote the above.

Here’s another view of the mouth of the Tucannon:


And a nice view of the Tucannon River Valley itself:



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