Leaving Sandpoint, Idaho, Bill and I crossed the final bit of the Idaho panhandle and entered Washington, our 13th state.
We decided to follow a northern route across the state, which, as we quickly learned, is also the most mountainous part of Washington. The photo on the right shows an elevation profile of this route – over 14,000 feet of climbing across the state.
We have given over 35 presentations across the country, and appeared in local media a few dozen times. But, for this stretch of road, we found ourselves entering no large towns, and, for the first time since central Pennsylvania, we biked for a week straight without a scheduled presentation or media appearance, enjoying the cycling.
Along the route, we stopped by a workshop for building straw bale houses. (Bill saw an article about it in the paper, and it happened to be just off a road we were biking). Straw-bale houses use straw bale as insulation in the walls, making for highly insulated and efficient houses. (We also met some people at the workshop who let us stay at their cabin).
While I am not saying that we should all go out and make our houses out of straw (if you can, great!), it did remind me how inefficient most houses are. If you get a home energy audit (ask your utility – sometimes they are free), you will usually find that your house is wasting energy– either through not enough insulation, cracks which let air escape, or inefficient lighting. And if you are building a new house, you should also demand it is built in such a way that uses energy efficiently. Our homes can use far less energy then they currently do, often with improvements in the quality of living. We should be demanding more efficient homes.
A couple we met at the straw bale clinic had a nice video camera and made this great video of us. Watch below. (Thanks to Christy and Bill.)
Christy and Bill also made a video of me talking about Ride for Climate in Spanish…which is a bit funny. You can watch that one here.
Our ride finished by crossing the North Cascades and riding into Seattle, where we will be for a little over a week.