We are trying to see a lot of Northwest Washington State in a fairly short period of time and that is a tough thing to do. We debated whether to move the motor home from campground to campground to shorten the exploration days, or whether to stay mainly in one spot and take long day trips in the car. As we lose a lot of time with each move of the motor home, we chose the latter route And these day trips are more than a bit draining.
This adventure was one of over 300 miles in a day in the car and we didn’t even cross the Puget Sound – it was all out on the Olympic Peninsula. We followed the shoreline of the Strait of Juan de Fuca – the body of water between Northwest Washington and Vancouver Island of British Columbia. There are both National and State scenic byways on the way out to Cape Flattery, the Northwestern most point in the contiguous United States. The forest rolls right down to the beach on this stretch of often foggy road interrupted by just a couple sleepy fishing towns.
Cape Flattery is located on the Reservation of the Makah Indians. They have recently opened a new trail that leads out to this rocky promenade on the Pacific.
As long as we were out to the Ocean, we continued on the the far West side of Olympic National Park to visit the Hoh Rainforest. This area receives around 150 inches of rain a year; it is one of the largest temperate rainforests in the US. In this area giant spruce trees dominate the tree tops just as the Sequoias did in Yosemite and the Redwoods in Northern Coastal California. We strolled through the Hall of Mosses Trail which was more than a bit eerie with every surface heavily covered or draped in green moss. Even an old phone booth was being overtaken. And on our drive out we saw a small group of people standing along the sign of road pointing at something – a sure sign of a wildlife sighting. Sure enough a bull Roosevelt Elk with his signature marking of a dark head was grazing down near the river.
It was a long day, but quite a rewarding one just the same.