Photo Essay: Finding Refuge From the Heat

by Susan Fried

Even jumping in Lake Washington isn’t going to be enough to stay cool in what weather reports are calling historic triple-digit temperatures that have hit Seattle this weekend and will continue through next week. Lake Washington and other local lakes will be overflowing with people seeking relief from the scorching heat. 

As a result of the National Weather Service forecasting excessive heat from Friday June 25 through Tuesday June 29, the City of Seattle is opening more than 30 “cooling centers” around the city, including libraries, community centers and emergency shelters. The City is also partnering with several malls and movie theaters to offer promotions to people who stop by to cool off. No purchase required — everyone is invited to take advantage of the air conditioning in local malls. In addition to the cooling centers, people can seek relief at local pools, spray parks, and wading pools.

During the heatwave it’s critical to check on friends and neighbors — especially those with health conditions and the elderly — drink lots of water and if possible find an air conditioned place or a body of water to escape to during the day.

In the meantime, you can check out photos I captured of South Seattlites doing their best to escape the heat and have fun while doing it. 

A boy gets ready to dive into Lake Washington from a pier at Mount Baker Park. (Photo: Susan Fried)
A small boat makes its way across Lake Washington on a hot June afternoon. (Photo: Susan Fried)
An ice cream truck pulled up to Mount Baker Park Wednesday June 23 and a line quickly formed as beach-goers took advantage of another way to beat the heat. (Photo: Susan Fried)
Dallas Minnifield, her Mom Rosa Minnifield, and Ava Ross set up a lemonade stand at Mount Baker Park on Wednesday June 23, offering ice-cold homemade lemonade for $2 a glass to thirsty beach goers. (Photo: Susan Fried)
Bellevue looms in the background from the pier at Mount Baker Park. (Photo: Susan Fried)
A boy cools off in Lake Washington. (Photo: Susan Fried)
Joshua Dodd and his children, Nile 8 and Bay 11, dive into Lake Washington to escape record setting temperatures in June. (Photo: Susan Fried)
A teenager leaps into Lake Washington to escape the record breaking heat. (Photo: Susan Fried)
Several boys play in Lake Washington on a hot June afternoon. (Photo: Susan Fried)
Joshua Dodd leaps into Lake Washington from a pier at Mount Baker Park. (Photo: Susan Fried)
A group of friends jump into Lake Washington. (Photo: Susan Fried)
Mount Rainier stands out on a hot cloudless June afternoon. (Photo: Susan Fried)
A group of friends float on Lake Washington on an unusually hot June afternoon. (Photo: Susan Fried)

Susan Fried is a 40-year veteran photographer. Her early career included weddings, portraits, commercial work — plus shes been The Skanner’s Seattle photographer for 25 years. Her images have appeared in the University of Washington Daily, the Seattle Globalist, Crosscut, and many more. She’s been an Emerald contributor since 2015. Follow her on Instagram @fried.susan.

Featured Image: A boy swims to a ball in Lake Washington. (Photo: Susan Fried)

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