Elwha Trail to Quinault

  Now back in Port Angeles, we dropped off our ice axes and other things that we wouldn't be needed with the altered route.

  Hours in town, were spent shoving my face and doing a little blog update; at the local library.

With our spirits down from turning back on the Cat Walk.  We still had to have a sit down meeting around camp about what to do with the remainder of the route.

  After sleeping on the issue; decided that we would catch up to our route schedule, by skipping that section of trail.

  The timing just wasn't right to go across that section of the Bailey, because of stress of a heavy snow year.  I am a huge believer in reading energy's and all the vibes were telling me negative things.  Very sensitive to those sort of things and always go with my gut.

Editor's Note: Article part of a multi-week backpacking trip in the Olympic National Park.

Camp Wilder
the spiritual Camp Wilder area of the Upper Elwha Valley

backpacking olympic national park
from only getting 4 hours of sleep the night before; I requested a 'Half Zero Day' once we hit the trail again - Elwha and Quinault River Valleys with a side night at Martins Park - put us from 3 days behind to 3 days ahead of schedule - which later would be an issue for me

  The next few days were spend lounging around on gravel bars of the Elwha and Quinault Rivers.  Being lazy and doing laundry in the sun.  Unfortunately it was pretty hard on my mind set.  Thoughts were only on the alpine sunsets and walking next to glaciers.  Not on the beautiful valley floor, that I spend so much time in during winter.

elwha laundry
River Laundry (no soap) 

trail designs ti-tri
Trail Designs Ti-Tri Inferno - nothing but good things to say

mountain goat elwha
Just as the sun was going down I was already asleep.  Something woke me and as my shelter fell half way down.  Recalled seeing a white flash as I awoke.  The next morning the nature alarm of the sound of hoofs hitting the ground made me jump out of the Sleeping Bag.   To my surprise it was a young Mountain Goat after all. 

elwha trail
Nivaun walking through an almost 100 year untouched forest

camp wilder
Gossamer Gear 'The One' on the Elwha's Camp Wilder Gravel-bar were we watched a herd of Roosevelt Elk graze undisturbed

camp wilder
the Park is busy restoring Botten Cabin in the Elwha Valley.  This is an off trail trip - hopping over marshes along the way

elwha barefoot
A Bare walk through the swamps and marshes of the Upper Elwha.  I did however end up with a few wild thorns in the bottom of my foot.  

goodkin creek
Vibram Five Finger Seeya - crossing a temporary log bridge until the new one is in place

mount seattle
Reflections of Mt. Seattle while transitioning from the Elwha to the Quinault side of the Olympic National Park

martins park trail
A little Scrambling - as we head to a night next to the Martins Lakes

martins park trail
heading out to views of the Upper Elwha and more - I later bathed in the Icy Water

mount christie
looking back at camp - which was sitting on the shoulder of Mt. Christie 

olympic headnet
I got tired of eating Mosquitoes with every breath - the Head Net is a great invention - Mosquitoes also hate Tyvek - I had every inch covered

martins park trail
Woke up at 3am in the middle of a Meteor Shower - trying to beat the bugs - we were walking before sunrise - caught the light bouncing off Mt. Seattle from the Trail

low divide olympic
crossing over to the Quinault River side

minimalist footwear olympic
Items used the most during this section - later used a water bottle on the filter - since threads do not match up on the Platypus Bags (update - dont use these bags)

16 mile ford quinault
Crossing the '16 Mile Ford' (note - summer; during dry period)

north fork quinault trail
Wandering down the Quinault River Valley - heading to our Post Office resupply

backpacking quinault
Started off the morning with a small Black Bear in the trail - hitched to the Post Office with a group of Boyscouts - after a short time we were back to walking the road - 20 miles to the Trailhead, so another hitch would be needed

On the next part of this adventure, we visit La Crosse Basin for a few days!

Updated in May 2015