posted at http://markandjoannatravel.blogspot.com
September 1, 2009
I’ve just spent the evening typing up all mu journals that I wrote while in the back country and I realized that I still need to write today’s.
This morning started so long ago. We woke up at 4:30 in the morning so that we could pack up our tent for the last time. Our camping stuff is getting pretty rank and I can’t wait to do laundry.
We were going to drive up to Hurricane Ridge again today to watch the sunrise. And what a marvelous sunrise it was! We had met another photographer last night who was doing the same thing, so we had company up here so early in the morning. When the sun rose, the clouds lit up like a fire in the sky. The clouds were forming and moving towards the sun in wisps and rolling balls, so the fire in the sky was very much accentuated. Then the deer came out and joined us at dawn. It was a chilly 55, but it was beautiful. Once it was light enough, the clouds covered the sun turning the day into a cloudy one. We drove out along Obstruction Point Road which leaves Hurricane Ridge and climbs in the mountains about 7.5 miles away. This gravel road was bumpier than the previous Whiskey Bend Road, but our car made it just fine.
Since the clouds were out, we passed by some scenic pullouts noting where they were to come back later and take pictures. We did find a colony of marmots near the road and watched them play for a while. There were several adults out keeping watch while the little kid marmots played. They rolled around in cartoon fashion and were just so cute.
When we reached Obstruction Peak and the end of the road, we decided to hike along Lillian Ridge for as long as we felt. The ground up here is like an arctic tundra, dry and nearly lifeless. The plants are all low to the ground and tiny while snow still covers patches of the ground. We learned that this area was in the rainshadow of Mt. Olympus meaning that Olympus stole all the moisture for itself keeping this area more dry and arid. The hike was interesting and the sun came out for some magnificent views. We took it easy and mostly just strolled for 2 miles.
once back at the trailhead, we picked a spot for lunch. We had two deer bugging us the whole time wanting some of our lunch and we had to shoo them away like flies.
We decided to make this the end of our trip to Olympic National Park. It was very hard to leave all that mountain beauty behind us and drive away. We had a magnificent time. I’d love to come back one day and hike more areas of the park. We had wonderful weather while we were here. It only rained on us one night and never while hiking. The days were perfect with sun and cool temps in the 70s. The nights were chilly, but quite nice in the tent.
The drive to Port Angeles was pretty short. We stopped at the Wilderness Information Center to donate our unused camp items that we aren’t taking home with us. Then we came straight to our Downtown Hotel to get cleaned up. I am excited at the prospect now of showering every single day from here on out on our vacation. We even hit up a laundromat to wash all the clothes.
Everything is now organized again instead of spread out all over the inside of the car and we are ready to go to Seattle to continue our vacation there.
We had dinner tonight again at the Crab House and again had the Dungeness Crab. It was still delicious. Now, though, it is time for sleep, in a bed. =)