Yakima Area Arboretum
One of the area's most cultivated parks, the Yakima Area Arboretum is an extremely popular place for weddings. It is dominated by open grassland with a very wide assortment of trees and plants, broken up into display gardens. Attempts are made to label every major plant, but sometimes the labels get stolen. If a tag is missing, a temporary tag is placed on the south side of the tree, and are usually about chest height.
There are some 21 collections they consider their "key collections" including such as "Trees of Washington" and "Flowering Ornamental Fruit Tree Collection".
I found that on a summer day, the sheer amount of open space makes the area quite hot, and therefore be prepared with sunscreen, a hat, and other sunlight protection if this is the type of weather you encounter on your visit. Very few of the benches in the facility are shaded.
One thing I was not prepared for was the sheer amount of traffic noise from the nearby interstate. It is quite loud in the areas along the west side of the arboretum.
- Budget Travel
- Museum Visits
Like many cities, Yakima once had an extensive set of trolley lines that connected it with a few surrounding areas. By the late 1940s, passenger service on these lines ceased to exist.
However, by nearly complete accident, the lines continued to remain operating as an electric freight railroad. With no real reason to modernize, the antique electric freight locomotives continued to roll through the streets of Yakima and surrounding cities, moving cars of fruit and other food products to a connection with the main line railroads.
In 1974, an idea was hatched to revive passenger service on the line, as part of increasing tourism in the area and as part of the country's bicentennial celebration, and as part of the growing interest in alternative transportation due to the Middle East Oil Embargo.
Thus, Yakima became one of the few places in the USA with a completely intact and non-modernized electric street railway.
Unfortunately, it was not to last. In the mid 1980s, the Union Pacific Railroad decided it no longer wished to have this line be part of their vast empire of railroad lines, and the operation was sold to the city of Yakima. With the freight service discontinued, the fruit growing company that owned land over which two of the lines ran sealed off access to those segments of the trolley lines. They had no interest in providing land for the trolley lines if the lines weren't moving their fruit, and a court case determined in 1987 that the trolley lines no longer had legal access to those segments of its lines. Thus, a huge portion of the lines simply vanished nearly overnight: The two-pronged line that extended west to Wiley City and Gromore simply vanished from the operable track map, and later city street expansion eliminated much of the rest of that line - shortening the system by some 15 miles.
What remains today is the old carbarn and substation and some of the yard tracks, and the remains of the western line: which is about 8 blocks long and is entirely on Pine Street, from 3rd to slightly past 11th. The line that runs north to Selah, about 5 miles north of the carbarn, is also still mostly available for use, but is currently out of service due to a large construction project that has eliminated the overhead wire of part of the line. It is hoped that this line will be put back in service soon (maybe July of 2013?).
Currently the workhorse of the fleet is an ex-Oporto, Portugal four-wheel car. These cars have a very different feel to them than the more normal 8 wheeled cars typical of North American practice after approximately 1895.
Tickets are sold at the museum office at 3rd and Pine, which also has a small selection of memorabilia, books, and other items for sale to support their operation. They also have equipment on display from the original substation.
When Union Pacific decided they would cease operations of the Yakima Valley Transportation Company, they left behind a few of the older freight cars associated with the company. These are also present at the museum site, but currently are not extremely accessible nor is there much in the way of interpretive information about them.
For more photos of the operation see my Travelogues:
Yakima Trolley Pine Street Line
Car # 1976
- Historical Travel
Yakima Sportsman State Park
First, a bit of a warning: As Yakima Sportsman State Park is a state park, it is required that you have a day pass or annual state parks pass (called a Discover Pass) to visit the state park here, or if you camp in the park your day pass is your camping receipt.
The web site for the state park is listed at the bottom of this tip.
This state park is located on the west side of the Yakima River from the town of Yakima itself. In the last few years a huge amount of suburban sprawl has enveloped the area around the park, but it is a useful respite from the downtown environment of the city - though there are a number of places where you can still hear the traffic from the nearby interstate that goes along the river.
The park also offers camping, which makes it one of the more economical places to stay in the Yakima area.
As this state park has its own entry in the VirtualTourist database, I have more information and photos in my Yakima Sportsman State Park page.
- Family Travel
- Hiking and Walking
The 12th Avenue Massage Clinic
T hey advertise themselves as the best massage in Yakima and they possibly are right. My sister friend Dar had organized a massage for me, after my long schlepp from Miami to yakima via Seattle. There are four massage therapists on staff and Jodie did a very good massage and felt very much rejuvenated.
Facials in paris, of course
Each time i am in Yakima, a body massage at 12th massage Clinic..
The Browning of America
it was surprised to see a thriving mexican community here in , then I realized that this valley is fertile and full of agricultural enterprises and the mexicans had come to work here. there are filipinos who came before the second world war. and of course there are the Indians . it is not unusual to see filipino indian and mexican indian children. mexicans have married into white families and i saw grandparents who are very white with very mexican lookinjg grandchildren. this is america, mate and all the good luck to them.
BROWNING OF AMERICA AS THE INDIANS HAD PREDICTED
old nursing school
this is st elizabeth nursing school. this building was the school and the dormitory of the nursing school. it was a little eery walking around and peering at the pictures of the graduates. Imagine the ones who graduated in the 1910s.. nearly one hundred years ago.. it must be fascinating for their descendants. by 1940s one could see filipinas and mexicanas among the graduates. only much later one could see an occasional american indian graduate
During the first week of November there were still fading colours of the autumn. i was told that the place was radiant just a few days back.. so it must be good to come in october to this place
visiting the old part of Yakima Town
This area was not the original Yakima central but Yakima North but slowly this became the center of the town
Hiking in the desert
There are a lot of trails in the hills around Yakima. Find one of the many outdoorsy stores and pick up and a trail guide before heading out.
- Hiking and Walking