Monday, September 2, 2013

Vacation Day 6; from mountains to the beach to the rainfoest

We slept in a bit on Day 6 as we were starting to adjust to the time change and sleeping outside.  We packed up the tent and headed for Hurricane Ridge.  We opted not to walk the skyline because it was extremely overcast and it seemed like we would not get the great views we wanted.  We hiked only about a mile in and a mile out.  Ashley was also having some pain in her teeth so we went into town to address it.  A couple hours later we were back on the road.

Our next stop was Sol Duc Falls.  On the drive to the falls, we spotted a young adult bear about 30 feet from us on the road.  Sadly, I was not quick enough with my camera.  Bear sighting are not nearly as common in Olympic National Park as they are in the Great Smoky National Park, where we have seen most of our bears.

A short (but nice) hike lead us to an amazing falls.  This was one of the places on the trip I wished I had invested in a super wide angle lens prior to leaving.  I simply could not capture all of this three pronged falls in a single shot.  On this hike we were actually starting to see some of the Olympic Peninsula old growth threes as well.

After spending a few hours on the Sol Duc hike, we took the scenic drive past Crescent Lake and headed to La Push and Rialto Beach.  The beach was amazing.  In a lot of ways in reminded me of Maine with its rocks shoreline.  This was very wooded however and the water was much warmer.

We waded through the ocean waves as the tide was still going out and headed to a rock formation that seemed rather unique.  After climbing around on the rocks for a bit we realized there were huge starfish everywhere!  Not to mention sea urchins and crabs.  I have never seen so many starfish in a single area.  There were several rock formations that literally had 100 or more starfish.

There were all sorts birds there as well.  We saw pelicans (which are insanely large), seahawks, and even a bald eagle.  We left the beach shortly after and headed to the campsite in the Hoh Rainforest.

We had some hikes planed the following day in the rainforest.  That evening was our typical trip meal of greens and hummus with vegan deli slices on a bagel.

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