8/23/2011

Hurricane Ridge - Olympic National Park

This week saw us make a hellishly long drive towards the West Coast. We'd been trying to break the long drives into two days and it was killing us. Apparently, we don't sleep well in parking lots. Shawn decided that we would get up early, leave, and drive straight through. Eleven hours and several hitching/unhitchings later we arrived in Chimacum, WA. We setup and headed out to find us some food. Although tired everyone was a lot less cranky with this method.

The next day saw us visiting with some of our fellow residents including a lovely period with an Airforums couple. Pleasure to meet them and thanks for the advice on the campground.

After lunch we headed out to see Hurricane Ridge at Olympic National Park. Here are some pictures from the drive.



We got stopped in a traffic jam caused by a bear eating on the hill. Shawn almost hit a woman who stepped directly in front of the truck while hurrying to get a picture of the bear. But then suddenly you come around the corner to see this.

We took a small (yeah right) hike up a nearly vertical trail with multiple lookout points. Well.... some of us finished it but I decided that half way was far enough and since my legs were shaking pretty violently I might want to turn back.

As you can see below, there was still some snow left from the 44 feet they got this year.

I have to admit that after Glacier National Park I secretly believed that I was ruined from mountain views. I'd seen it all. Been there, done that, let's move along. I was so wrong. Yes, gents you can mark it on the calendar. I am admitting I was wrong. Shawn will tell you that's a monumental occasion and often needs an Act Of Congress. Then again, when you look at the pictures below you really don't care about anything. This is what I've always wanted mountains to look like and finally I have seen it. Nuff said.




A part that I didn't get to see because I didn't finish the hike -
On the drive back down -


The irony is that this wasn't the reason we came to the area. We came to see the fish market in Seattle, which we won't be seeing this trip due to (what some might call) inadequate planning. I, however, think it was something else intervening.

One more note-
Once again we had to do a Ranger led program for the kids to get their Junior Ranger Badges. I cannot tell you how much you miss if don't do at least on of these in every park. Truly, another wonderful experience.

PS. We learned that scientist are coming to believe that bears don't hibernate during winter.... everything we know about bears thrown out the window!!

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