Salem, Oregon

Last week I prepared for my road trip to Salem, Oregon to celebrate the birth of my granddaughter Zulee.  I did a little research on biking in that area and found Salem to be very biker friendly.  Many of the city streets have biking lanes and there are a variety of paths and trails to ride.  I put my Specialized Crosstrail on the car rack and headed south.  The day after our St. Patrick’s Day baby Zulee introduced herself to the world, I took advantage of good weather and hit the road.

Salem Oregon Capital

Salem Oregon Capital

The sun was shining and the scent of cherry blossoms filled the air.  I spent the first hour of my ride taking in the sites and architecture of this State’s capital.

Oregon State Penitentiary

Oregon State Penitentiary

On my way to the government district I passed the Oregon State Penitentiary.   The prison has been here since 1866 and still has the original guardhouse next to the street.  As I snapped this photo one of the guards drove out to greet me.  Actually, he came out to make sure I was not on penitentiary property.

I continued on my slow trek around the capital building area.  The grounds were very clean and I found many places worthy of photos.

These columns were part of the original capital building.  The bricks of the inner core were build by prison inmates in 1876.

Old columns

1876 Capital Building Columns

The many paths that weave through the grounds are very inviting.  Several of them have streams and other water features which invite a variety of birds to play in them and an occasional child when parents are not looking.

Fountain

My bike resting near a fountain

Plaza

Plaza near capital building

1876 Church

1876 Church

This church was close to the government district.  It was first erected in 1854 but had to re-built in 1872 after suffering damage from a fire.

Fountain

Fountain near capital building

 I could have spent the day just taking in the sights of downtown but felt the need to hit the pedals and get a  workout.

I made my way towards the Willamette River which is on the west side of the downtown area.  I found well groomed paths and a park which separates the streets from the river.  I would imagine it to be filled with people during the summer months.  There was a steam wheeler river boat docked and waiting to take those wishing for a river tour.

River Boat

Steam Wheeler River Boat

There was an indoor carousel which was full of happy children riding the motorized animals.

I crossed the river over the Union Railroad bridge which has been turned into a paved pedestrian bridge.  I picked up speed as I entered West Salem and slowly left the stop lights behind.  The city scene turned to residential then to open countryside.   I found this to be a refreshing change of environment.   Many times when you get out into the county the roads get rougher and narrower.  This was not the case here.  The road was smooth and had a wide shoulder.  Traffic was very light with only the occasional car passing me.

Salem countryside

The Countryside NW or Salem

As you can see in the photo above the terrain was that of rolling hills which gave me that work out I wanted.  I found a quaint country church along the way.  The Spring Valley Church was built in 1859.  Its grounds have a graveyard on the north side.   The markers are evidence that many of the early pioneers had been laid to rest here.   Most of the markers were from the late 1800s.

Old Church

Spring Valley Church

Old Cemetary

Spring Valley Church Cemetery

 I made my way through the hills and back to West Salem.   I took a short play break at my fellow grandparents in-law Mike and Anita.  After spending some time with my grandkids Zayden and Ryker, I pedaled back to my hotel room.  I had only logged 25 miles on my bike this day but it was a very enjoyable one.

Today I was blessed with a sunny day, a great ride, and the love of family.

Thanks for riding with.

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About Bruce Bosman

Join me as I ride my mountain bike up and over the incredible mountains of Washington State. Although this blog may appear to be a testament to my accomplishments, this was not my intent. Compared to the challenges that many face every day mine are insignificant. My hope is that you will appreciate these photos and stories as you join me on my Mountain Quest. I recognize and pray for all of you that face adversity and struggle to overcome mountains in your everyday life. We all have bad experiences, excess baggage, and debris that pile up to create obstacles in our life. Much of my mountain is made up of the accumulative stress and incidents that 29 years of a law enforcement profession and life brings. If allowed to go unchecked these mountains can become impassable and will block out the sun. I challenge myself and you to face our mountains and conquer them. Even if it is one step or one pedal stroke at a time, work to overcome the obstacles that life puts before you. Push through the pain and embrace the challenges. Work to make your life and the lives of others better. Look for the beauty that this world and life has to offer you. . Carpe Diem (Seize the Day)
This entry was posted in Bicycling, Oregon State, Photography, Salem. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Salem, Oregon

  1. Jeff Katzer says:

    What a fun day that must have been. And the new little grand daughter is a doll. Well done!

  2. Bruce Bosman says:

    Thanks Jeff. Yes, it was a great weekend.

  3. Looks like another ‘view’ ride and even better; family time.

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