Get on the bus
What: Smart Trips Bus Trips
Where: Throughout Whatcom County
WHEN: Aug. 8-30
Cost: Free; please RSVP
Wednesday, August 7, 2019
It’s not possible to take a Whatcom Transportation Authority bus to the moon just yet, but according to Whatcom Smart Trips, residents who’ve left their vehicles behind and kept track of the miles they’ve walked, biked, taken the bus or participated in a ride share since the start of the program in the summer of 2006 equates to approximately 295 trips to the moon—or a whopping 70,409,159 miles (and counting).
In addition to the many environmental and financial benefits that are the side effects of leaving gas guzzlers out of the conveyance equation, Smart Trippers have greatly reduced health care costs to local employers, walked and biked more than 14 million miles, and helped create jobs thanks to people who are paying for transit fare instead of fuel.
For those who have been meaning to wean themselves from their reliance on personal vehicles, now is the perfect time to get on the bus. A number of free events offered by Whatcom Smart Trips in the coming days and weeks are designed to not only help people figure out how to use the WTA system, but also to get them out and about in the place they live.
All will be welcome at a Barkley Village Bus Trip departing at 10:20am Thurs., Aug. 8 from the Bellingham Senior Activity Center on Halleck Street. Once riders have disembarked, they’ll pick a spot for coffee and tea and lob questions to staff members about things like planning future trips.
A couple of days later, a Bellingham Farmers Market Bus Trip leaving at 10:35am Sat., Aug. 10 from the Cordata Bus Station will help people see firsthand how easy it is to use the bus. After spending some time perusing and purchasing local produce, hop back onboard and return to where you came.
Bus fare will be free for everyone for the duration of the Northwest Washington Fair, and a special Lynden Bus Trip starting at 12:10pm Mon., Aug .12 at Cordata will give riders an inside view of the action. And, since participants will have a couple of hours to check out Lynden—and see how easy it is to get there by bus—they can feel free to wander among the exhibits at the Jansen Art Center, grab lunch, or take a spin on the ferris wheel at the Fair.
Also on the roster are a Lake Padden Picnic Bus Trip (Aug. 14), Lummi Island Tide Pooling and Picnic Bus Trips (Aug. 16 and 28), a Stimpson Nature Reserve Bus Trip (Aug. 18,) a Scavenger Hunt Bus Trip (Aug. 19), and a Bellingham Airport Tour Bus Trip (Aug. 30).
To help get Smart Trips get closer to adding another trip to the moon to their statistical analysis, consider biking or walking to the aforementioned events, some of which also include short hikes. For the record, every mile counts.
Mix and match
In Whatcom and Skagit counties, bicyclists have plenty of routes to choose from when it comes to where they pump their pedals. Following are a few events that showcase the scenic bounty of our region from atop two-wheeled conveyances. Choose one, or mix and match your scenic adventures.…
A Willamette Valley road trip
If you need a few days break from “real life,” consider heading south to Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Sandwiched between the coastal mountains and the North Cascades, the valley is the state’s burgeoning wine country, where lush, meandering hills and dales are heavily populated with…
Getting hairy in Bigfoot country
Some trail workers I know and respect adamantly report they’ve spent decades traveling and working in the great outdoors without ever once encountering a Bigfoot.
Although I don’t hold this against them, it does cause me to question their inability to perceive and accept the…