Thursday, September 7, 2017

Northwest Road Trip - September 2017 - #4

Today we thought we would check out Sol Duc Hot Springs. After breakfast we headed down Highway 101 toward the park and Randy saw a sign that said the road would be closed at a certain mile marker. He said, "We can't get in." So that was that! I googled it and discovered they are doing work on several days after Labor Day (I guess coming out of season has its own pitfalls.), 9am to 1pm. So on those days, if we want to go into the park we need to get there before 9 or after 1.

We decided instead we would drive up to Hurricane Ridge. It's also part of the Olympic National Park, but you take a different road to get there. It has views of the mountain range with 5 glaciers that feed the rivers of the park. We debated whether we'd go there because visibility is so limited with all the hazy, smoky air. But we figured what the heck.

The drive up was quite steep and very curvy. I thought of my kids who get carsick -- they would not have enjoyed this -- but it was a beautiful drive. Once we got there, even though the views were encased in haze, it still was spectacular. There's a dreamy beauty to the haze, and it kind of delineates the ridges in a cool way.

Took some pictures when we stopped at the side of the road. There are no guard rails. It reminded me of how insane my mother would get when we made stops like that on the Alcan Highway, or in the Grand Canyon, or other high spots. She would hold her arms out and keep us back, back, back from the edge, warning us all the while. If you asked my daughter, she would be more than happy to tell you I had my own version of such motherly fears. I would tell dire stories of deaths resulting from fooling around at the edge of high cliffs and drop-offs. I believe in the power of story.

Randy on the edge.
The closest I got to the drop-off. Do you believe people actually drive on that road down there?!
Some of the beauty in the haze.

You can see some of the glaciers. They said the glaciers used to come down quite a bit further, but it's gotten warmer.

We took a little walk to see views off to the other side.

You can see some ski lift equipment. There is skiing in the winter, although now sometimes there's more rain than snow.
Randy was taking a picture of this ski lift building and I spied a deer resting underneath it!

Me on the trail

And Randy on the trail.
There was no signal up there, we thought. Randy's phone started pinging when we got to a higher overlook. Hie phone thought he was in Canada (which we could've seen if not for the haze)!

We stopped at an overlook outside the 3 tunnels on the way to the ridge. While we stood there, two birds flew down and landed right by us. They were fearless. Looking for food, I'm sure. They must hang out there waiting for humans and handouts.

One of the birds posing on a sign telling us (if not for the haze) we could see Mt. Baker, British Columbia, Bellingham, and more.

The bird posed for his close-up.
"Well, human, where is the food?!!"
On this road trip we've seen this "Flag Person Ahead" sign several times. We've also seen the "Elk Crossing" sign a bunch, but I didn't stop and take a photo. So I cheated and got this from the web.

Doesn't it look like Harry Potter's patronus?

Now we are relaxing in our little cabin by the creek, and Randy got a fishing license to try his hand at it. He saw a few pretty big fishes, he said. He caught around 8 small ones this time (you can see one catch in the video), but not the big ones he saw earlier.

1 comment:

  1. The Olympic Range is one of my favorite places on earth. Been there in the sunmmer and we had snowball firght in shorts and flips, and in a drizzle, Thanks for reminding me of those wonderful places.Do go to the fainforest. It is a wonder to walk through.