Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Washington Wrap-up

To cap off my last two posts about Washington state's Olympic Peninsula, here are some pictures from the peninsula that we took in spots other than Port Angeles and the Hoh Rain Forest.

First off, here we are on Hurricane Ridge:

The next picture is of Lake Crescent Lodge, and below that is one of Lake Crescent itself. They are located next to each other in Olympic National Park, and the lodge is sure to satisfy you if you would rather stay in the woods than in town.

In my April 27th post I mentioned that we hiked along the Sol Duc River. The next picture is of that hike's ultimate destination, Sol Duc Falls. You can see how the river makes a 90-degree turn at the bottom.

Downstream from the falls, the Sol Duc gets wider, fuller, and faster. The next picture is of a part of the river known as Salmon Cascades. Because the Sol Duc flows behind the Cullen house in those uber-popular Twilight novels, I figured there might be some readers who would appreciate seeing this.

Outside the town of Sequim is this zoo that allows you to drive your car through fields of animals. I would be lying if I said it is one of the country's best zoos, but it is definitely unique. When a zebra blocked our path and his cohorts approached our windows to beg for food, I found myself wondering: Where else in America could this happen? And as a lifelong bear enthusiast, I loved being this close to a grizzly:

Now, I guess I have to admit that I was wrong when I said these pictures would not include any from the Hoh Rain Forest. The next two are of an enormous Sitka spruce that grows there, plus an informational sign about the tree. Because the tree is alongside the road to the visitor center, you can see it without venturing onto a trail.

Finally, if you read my last two posts you may have wondered how the Hoh can receive so much more rainfall than Port Angeles when they are so close to one another. It is because Port Angeles sits just inside the Olympic Rain Shadow, and for an explanation of that phenomenon, go here. The Olympic Peninsula is a lovely and fascinating place, and I hope you are inspired to visit it.

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