The international headquarters of Inkling Books is a modest 1920s-era Seattle apartment that's stuffed with books and the Mac mini that Inkling's one and only doer-of-everything (me) uses for writing and editing. It is located near the University of Washington from which you can sometimes see snow-capped Mount Rainier. Five blocks away is the world-class Woodland Park Zoo. Unfortunately, we're a little too far away to hear the lions roar or the monkeys chattering. Inkling is also a short walk from Green Lake (more photos), which is Seattle's modest equivalent of NYC's Central Park. In this photo, we are just to the left of the tall building on the upper right skyline. The tiny blimp on the far right skyline is a rusty but still-standing 1950s-era air-raid siren. Fortunately, it no longer works. From its size, it must have been very loud when tested once each week. Via the Internet, you can view beautiful but often rainy Seattle from the top of our famous Space Needle, (also here) built for the 1962 World's Fair. Seattle likes to do crazy things with the Space Needle. At Christmas it becomes a very tall Christmas tree--that sort of thing. And if you visit Seattle, be sure and see the Museum of Flight, the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks, the busiest boat locks on the West Coast and colorful Pike Place Market. And if you'd like to see whales, our most celebrated local wildlife, and have a day to spare at the right time of year, check out San Juan Safaris and Great Orca Adventures. From downtown, you might also want to take a round trip as a walk-on passenger on either the Seattle-to-Bremerton or the Seattle-to-Bambridge Island ferries. It only costs about $6 and will get you onto Puget Sound for much less than a tour boat. Go in the late afternoon, and you can see the sun set behind the mountains when westbound and, when you return after dark, the city's skyline will be lighting up. You might even buy a carry-out meal at one of the many eateries on the waterfront and have a picnic on board. Seattle, the home of REI, is particularly great if you're into serious mountain climbing. East of Seattle is the Cascade mountain range, whose best known mountain is Mount Rainier. It's 14,410-feet-high and is the only mountain in the lower 48-states with an extensive glacier system. There are numerous routes to the top. Some are only a little more difficult than a long and demanding hike, although they require that you be in good condition and climb with experienced climbers or guides. There are also routes to challenge even the most experienced climber, and numerous day hikes in the summer and snow activities in the winter. If you'd like to make the climb, there's more information here and here. Just remember that Mount Rainier is very physically demanding. If you're not in quite good shape, you're not likely to enjoy the climb. Whatever route you take, you'll be going up and down roughly 10,000 feet. When I climbed with two other guys, it took 20 hours of continuous climbing, up and down without stopping for more than a few minutes. I was in excellent condition, but as I came down I found myself promising that I would never climb again. (Two weeks later, I was making an attempt on the 11,138-foot Little Tahoma, a side peak to Mount Rainier.) As I told an almost too-eager Japanese friend, "Imagine yourself going up and down the stairwell in one of Seattle's taller skyscrapers 16 times in one day. It's that much effort." Of course, when climbing the scenery is much, much better than the inside of a stairwell. That's what makes it worthwhile, that and being able to tell friends, "I climbed to the top of that." As as you look west from Seattle across Puget Sound, you'll see the other of our mountain ranges, the Olympics. (The shielding the two provide from Arctic blizzards is one reason for Seattle's mild winters.) The largest of the mountains you'll see west of Seattle is the wide, 7,743-foot-high Mount Constance. And that brings up an interesting episode in my life. Just to the left of the peak, you'll see what looks like a tiny vertical white streak. That's the "Terrible Traverse" noted on the linked web page. Terrible isn't an exaggeration. When I climbed the peak, the guy I was climbing with slipped and, if we hadn't been roped together, he'd have smashed into a boulder field several hundred feet below. After his little slip, we bypassed the traverse, descending to the bottom of the snow field, crossing beneath it, and then climbing back to rejoin our route. Sometimes it's better to play it safe.
Specifically interested in books with these subjects or themes: Hans Christian Andersen, CS Lewis, JRR Tolkien
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|Manuscript Submissions||Policy: please contact publisher before sending work. Email: Editor@InklingBooks.com|
|Title, Creators, Comments / Reviews||Ages||Date Published|
|1. Stories for Girls: Lovingly Adapted for Twenty-First Century Children (P...
Author: Hans Christian Andersen
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