Tag: wind farm

Wild horses & wine

Sunday, May 25th, 2008 | All Things, Drinks, Travel

After we spent the latter half of last night chilly and wet, A decided that we needed to make a quick stop at the Ellensburg Fred Meyer for some emergency ponchos. And true to some variant of Murphy’s Law, his preparatory purchase seemed to insure that we would have no need for rain gear; the skies remained clear the entire day.

We spent the early part of the afternoon along the roads of Central Washington: a pretty — and pretty fast (ouch) — drive which eventually brought us to the Wild Horses Monument on Interstate-90.

David Govedare’s sculpture of 16 wild horses was installed on this bluff near the town of Vantage for Washington State’s Centennial Celebration in 1989. Native American Govedare is one of the Northwest’s most recognized artist for his public works, including the lifesize Bloomsday runners of “The Joy of Running Together” (1986) in downtown Spokane’s Riverfront Park. (Not everyone’s a fan.)

This 200-foot line of charging horses (no two alike) can be glimpsed briefly from the interstate — if you’re not the one behind the wheel — or more leisurely from the Wanapum Vista Overlook, where we made this stop. Bonus: an expansive view of the Columbia River Valley, Wanapum Lake and the Vantage Bridge.

Govedare’s installation, created from welded 1″ thick tempered steel plates, is titled “Grandfather Cuts Loose the Ponies“; the scene re-creates the legend of the Great Spirit turning loose a herd of the first wild horses onto earth. There is a rather treacherous-looking trail leading up the horses, but my festival flip-flops probably wouldn’t have gotten me very far up the bluff.

Later, at the Cave B Winery adjacent to the Gorge. Inventor/neurosurgeon cum real estate developer Vince Bryan purchased this 550 acre plot of land on which he carved out 100 acres of vineyard; since then, over two dozen wineries have moved into the area. He and his wife built the neighboring Gorge Amphitheatre in 1983 (now owned by Live Nation); in the 1990s, the Bryans added the inn and resort. A golf course is in the works.

We joined up with our Chimposium-visiting friends and together signed up for a tasting of six wines: the 2006 Cave B Sauvignon Blanc; the 2007 SageCliffe 100 Chardonnay (unoaked); the 2007 Cave B Saignée Rosé; the 2006 Cave B Sangiovese; the 2004 SageCliffe Merlot; and the 2005 Cave B Syrah.

A and NO picked up a couple bottles of the Merlot for sipping out on the veranda from which we could take in the awe-inspiring view of the vines and the Columbia River Gorge, while plinking traces of the White Rabbits piano heavy set drifted over from the festival next door.

Check out the flickr sets from our afternoon.

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