From Hurricane Ridge area to The Elwha Valley of the Olympic National Park
Spent a nice morning today at Heart O’ the Hills campground. Just had to find out the name of the yellow plant we saw yesterday so we returned to the Visitor Center for Olympic NP, Port Angeles to ask the Ranger. Showed them the picture and they declared it Skunk Cabbage. Skunk Cabbage!?! I saw a lot of Skunk Cabbage in the woods behind my house growing up outside of Boston. Our Skunk Cabbage back East didn’t look anything like the Pacific Northwest Skunk Cabbage. Turns out the Skunk Cabbage back East and the Skunk Cabbage in the West are related but don’t look alike. Ah Ha ! Learn something new every day. We took a hike just outside the Olympic NP Ranger Station of Port Angeles, beautiful.
Elwha Valley, Olympic National Park, Wa.
Drove from Port Angeles area to the Elwha Valley and took a very short hike into the woods to see Madison Falls. Only 60′ high but very nice. Along the way into the Falls was a young family with three little kids. They asked where we were from and we said we were fulltime RVers. Ah well, no explanation needed. They knew all about RV fulltiming as one of the Grandpas’ of the little ones is a fulltime RVer AND he winters in the Yuma area of Arizona. I tell you, it is a small world.
Further up the road from Madison Falls is the Olympic NP Elwha Campground and we decided to go for a hike and camp there for the night in the practically empty campground. There are some tenters a few sites away from us but they are quiet neighbors. The hike we took was not as long as it was rapidly ascending up the mountain side. The path was so steep the NP service made it switch back I guess to keep from having to rescue fallen hikers. The reward was trails end and the views. What can anyone say to really describe such a beautiful, lush, diverse Forest with huge snow covered peaks towering above. Best things about going to Olympic National Park in early Spring; you have the place pretty much to yourselves, you see the beginnings of renewed life after a long winter, no insects bothering you, and a hike such as we took is best done in cool weather. We would have driven further into the Elwha Valley but the road was closed as the Olympic NP is taking Down a dam and they are going to let the water run free as it had done up until the dam was built. Sometimes progress is a step backwards.
Now, with nightfall it is very dark and the only sound is the sounds of the frogs calling.
Just a word about fulltime RVing. When we became fulltime RVers we got lots of folks responding with encouraging words and, of course, some nay sayers. So when we say we live in our RV and just travel fulltime we brace for the varied reactions. Our eldest daughter, living in Santa Monica, tells the story of having a New Years Day gathering this year of lots of upwardly mobile young people. One couple, from France, soon to be moving to the Washington, DC area for an important scientific post asked “So what do your parents do?” Everyone stopped to listen. Our daughter explained that we were fulltime RVers and we were travelling the country. Then she, just as we do, braced for the reaction. ”This is my dream when we retire!” the man exclaimed to my daughter. We all got a laugh, it seems travel translates well into any language or culture.
Hope you enjoy the pictures