Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island, Mid pond and residence

Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island, Mid pond and residence

The Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island is another of the gardens featured in Donald Olson’s The Pacific Northwest Garden Tour.  I vaguely remember visiting about 20 years ago, and I resolved to return this year with my camera.

This month is an especially good time to visit because the Bloedel Reserve has on display a special poetry exhibit to coincide with National Poetry Month.  Twenty-one poems are printed on wooden signs that are situated throughout the grounds.  This temporary exhibit was curated by University of Washington professor Linda Bierds and local author/poet David Guterson.  I thought they did an exceptional job selecting poems that fit the unique features of the landscape.  Reflecting on the images in the poems while pausing to enjoy those same subjects in the natural world around you added a deeper meaning to the experience of being there.

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You explore the grounds by following a groomed trail and map.  They take you through a typical Pacific Northwest forest — very green, with tall trees swaying in the wind — past ponds and marshy wet areas.  There are more formal grounds around the residence, a Japanese garden with guest house, sand and stone “Zen” garden, a moss garden, and a reflecting pool.  So much variety unfolding before your eyes!

Path in a meadow

Path in a meadow

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Trail past the sheep barns

Trail past the sheep barns

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Boardwalk

Boardwalk

Stairs to waterfall overlook

Stairs to waterfall overlook

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Interior, Bloedel residence

Interior, Bloedel residence

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The Bloedel Reserve is a perfect day trip from Seattle, and it is very easy to get there using public transportation.  When you disembark the ferry at Winslow on Bainbridge Island, catch the B. I. Ride right in front of the terminal.  The fare is $2, and the Bloedel Reserve is one of the scheduled stops.  It will drop you off at the gates of the reserve.

 

 

Handsome Paths

June 12, 2014

“And what a dynamic, handsome object is a path!”
— Gaston Bachelard, The Poetics of Space:  The Classical Look at How We Experience Places

Path in Winslow down to the marina

Path in Winslow down to the marina

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I haven’t been out for a wilderness hike yet this year, but I have been enjoying some urban walks.  I love to go out with an open outlook and see what interesting things cross my path.  These pictures were taken on a recent outing to Bainbridge Island.  I couldn’t resist following this enticing green path down from the commercial center to the water.  And I was rewarded with a rare glimpse of a hummingbird!

Rhododendron

Rhododendron

Daisies

Daisies

Hummingbird and clover

Hummingbird and clover

 

Riding the ferry to Bainbridge Island

Riding the ferry to Bainbridge Island

My friend Carol and I made a day trip back to the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art to see its new exhibits.  The ferry ride is always a welcome transition away from city life, and it is a joy to stroll the streets of Winslow and enjoy the small town ambience.

I love that the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art changes its exhibits so frequently.  Who knew that there is so much local talent to showcase!  The current exhibits, which run through January 5, 2014, feature the works of oil painter Gayle Bard and children’s book illustrator and artist Richard Jesse Watson, as well as new selections from its permanent collection.  Admission is free, and the museum is a short walk up from the ferry terminal.  No need to bring a car.

Gayle Bard: A Singular Vision exhibit

Gayle Bard: A Singular Vision exhibit

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From Richard Jesse Watson: Inner Zoo, Outer Orbit exhibit

From Richard Jesse Watson: Inner Zoo, Outer Orbit exhibit

Richard Jesse Watson, Quilted Angel

Richard Jesse Watson, Quilted Angel

Richard Jesse Watson, Infinity Within

Richard Jesse Watson, Infinity Within

Richard Jesse Watson, Star Gazer

Richard Jesse Watson, Star Gazer

Sign on side of building in Pioneer Square

View of Seattle from the ferry to Bainbridge Island

I’ve always enjoyed riding the ferries in Seattle.  They are an integral part of the transportation system here, not just a tourist attraction.  But I took a ride, simply for pleasure, to Bainbridge Island.  It’s a wonderful way to get out on the waters of Puget Sound if you don’t have a boat of your own.  On Bainbridge, I walked along the Waterfront Trail to the Winslow business district.  I’m not much of a shopper, but I did browse for a while at the Eagle Harbor Bookstore, a gem of an independent bookstore.  Then I returned to Seattle on the ferry.  It made an easy half-day outing.

Raucous seagull on the ferry railing overlooking Seattle's loading docks

Bainbridge Island

I walked this trail from the ferry to the Winslow business district.

Wild blackberries along the Waterfront Trail

Weathered fence and shadows, Bainbridge Island

Several ferries ply the routes across Puget Sound.

Seattle skyline from the ferry