By Alvar Jones - 14th July 2019 6:08am
Occasionally, the web team sends out a travel roving reporter to corners of the earth to report what is happening in the outside world. At this time, Washington State on the Pacific North west coast of America was chosen.
The State, named after President George Washington, borders the Pacific Ocean with the Puget sound inlet on one side Canada to the North and Portland Oregon to the South. Down its centre run the Cascade mountains, famously known for the "ring of fire" volcanoes on these mountains where two tectonic plates meet.
The mild and somewhat wet climate with rich soil provide excellent conditions for the huge swathes of forests of Douglas Fir, Hemlock, ponderosa pine, white pine, spruce, larch and cedar. The State is a leading producer of lumbar, which in the past was floated up the Puget sound as huge log floats to be processed.
The capital city is Olympia, but it is the largest city, Seattle, which is most well known for being the home of several large companies such as Boeing Aircraft, Microsoft software, Amazon online trader, and Starbucks coffee.
The State has some stunning scenery such as the Snoqualmie waterfalls and great outdoor activities. Conservation activities abound such as in Woodard Bay which was purchased in 1853 by the Woodard family after crossing in a wagon train, but is now a major bird sanctuary, for herons, cormorants, Bald eagles and a very large bat community.
Mount St Helens
The last of the "ring of fire" volcanoes to erupt was Mount St. Helens in 1980. A massive explosion blew the top of the mountain off reducing its height by nearly 1400 feet this was followed by steam and pyroclastic flow down the mountainside at speeds of up to 300mph.
The damage to the surrounding forests was massive with trees uprooted, laid flat and burnt in its path. In all some 800,000 trees were killed which were cleared over a two year period with some 600 truck loads a day by the Weyerhaeuser company. Replanting started within one year, but the landscape was reshaped forever.
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