I have driven past the Seahawks training facility on I-405 more times than I can think of. I have also ridden by a couple of times on my bike when doing the loop around Lake Washington. I was doing another ride but, this time, I wasn’t bothered about keeping my average speed up and so was willing to make stops along the way if there was something worthy of a look. I figured this would be one such thing.
It is called the Virginia Mason Campus and is located alongside the lake. There are outdoors facilities but there appears to be a large indoor training space. A huge twelfth man flag is on the side of the structure. I took a quick look around and grabbed some photos with my phone. I thought I had taken a couple more but the app I use has been misbehaving recently and some of the shots were not saved. As I made my way out, I passed the entry sign which appears more welcoming than the fences and guard houses suggest when you get closer.
The Sounder commuter rail service takes passengers from both north and south of Seattle in to the city. The service from the south end is a very popular one and is expanding. The northern service from Everett has not been as popular and is not growing in the same way. However, on both routes, special trains are run on days with big sporting events such as the Seahawks playing at home. There is normally no service on the weekends so this is an unusual sight.
I was after some Sounder shots for possible use in a future project so headed down to Shoreline where the trains run alongside the beach. The beach is accessed by a footbridge over the tracks. It has some good sightlines for shots but also fencing that is not so helpful. I tried out a location further down and close to the tracks and it was not a bad spot. Since two trains were heading to the game about 15 minutes apart, I did go back to the bridge to see how that looked too.
As the train was past me, I could continue to watch it as it ran along the shore a good portion of the way to the city. It did go around a headland but again popped into view as it got closer to the downtown area.
Just south of the station in Seattle is the pair of sports fields that house some of the cities franchises. Century Link Field is the home of the Seattle Seahawks and the Sounders MLS team. Beyond that is Safeco Field where the Mariners play. I had a quick look at Century Link Field while I was passing. Since the season was over, everything was very quiet. The field was gated so I couldn’t go in. There may have been tours available but I wasn’t there with enough time to look around properly.
The field was quite open next to a large parking lot so getting a full view of it was not tricky. The evening light was very directional with the harsh shadows but it was still not too bad. I also climbed up the steps to peer inside. You could see a good portion of the ground but the light was again quite harsh. Below I also include an aerial view taken when I was coming in to Seattle.