Summer Trail Series Recap

  Early spring I decided to spend another summer in the Olympic National Park.  The main goal here was to experience the mountains, coastal regions, rainforests and even glaciers in all different times of the year.  So I sat down with my maps and put together a route that would be walking in a course of 3 months time.  Being familiar with the always different annual snowpack played a big role in planning, even doing several scouting trips into the interior to get hands on beta.


 I wanted to stay high much as possible, but wanted to save certain areas for after the snow melted.  Did not want to do any 'out n back' trip, so this meant I would be walking in a loop or one direction.  To accomplish this would mean riding the bus into a certain drainage, walking the road until hitch, doing the hike and then reversing the process, getting me back to a town for more food.  Big thank you to anyone that picked me up while road walking, saved my feet a lot of pain, my trip would of not been possible without your help.

  Hope to share a 'trip planning post' later this winter.


Note:  All photos and trips reports will be released Winter 2013 in a multi-part series titled 'Walking through the Seasons'


High Divide Trail
Olympic Mountains, taken roughly 12 weeks apart. 






Olympic Peninsula
Walking through the Seasons routes.



Like with most things in life, my summer did not go as planned.  When doing your trip planning, should always have a plan A,B and sometimes C.  Being adaptable and compromising also really helps.




Recap of Spring-Summer-Autumn

  •  Bus dropped me off in Neah Bay and I started walking south along the wild North Olympic Coast. Wanting to walk ocean to a glacier.  more....
  •   Trekking inland into the Hoh Rainforest, up Mount Olympus and then over the Sol Duc Divide, the view of the glaciers and ocean in the same panorama, would give me a perspective on the trip over the last few weeks.  Snow was still in the high country above 4,000'. more.... 
  •   Got word that there were Mountain Goats hanging out above Port Angeles, I set off with the hopes of photographing one.  This would also be a way to avoid the backpacking crowds around the 4th of July holiday.  more....
  •   A friend convinced me to go into a certain area early, glad I did, because it was the highest concentration of wildflowers I have ever seen to date.  Would also be spending 2  days off trail, into the one of the hardest sections all year, this would allow me to avoid an area I'd been so many times before. The payoffs were huge, sleeping at the foot of a glacier, with little marmots running around playing in camp.  more....
  •   I would go and relax on a gravel bar for 4 days in the Quinault Rainforest, this would give my mind and body some much need healing.  more....
  •   Met up with one of the owners of Browns Outdoor in PA and his friend, to walk across the Park from North to South in 3 days.  more....
  •   Wanting to avoid an area I was just in, decided to throw in an extra section (with no proper research) of off trail during an 8 day traverse of the Park from South to North.  Ended up biting me in the butt with a climbers fall and helicopter rescue during day 4.  (plan on writing step by step account of this section; with photos and route descriptions, to help others avoid my mistakes) more.... 
  •   For weeks I was grounded in town with a foot injury.  Started to lose my mind and replayed the event of being rescued a million times over in my head.  This period was hard for me.  more....
  •   After a few weeks, I would test my foot with a day hike.  Made possible with the help of Duct Tape.  more....
  • The next week, would test my foot even further, with another day hike.  more....
  • and the week after.  more....
  • Week after that, would day hike with one of the owners of Browns Outdoor again, well as the owner of Cock-a-Doodle Doughnuts, both located in Port Angeles.  more....
  •   Wanting to face the mental demons, I revisited the mountain that a helicopter pulled me off only weeks before.  more....
  •   A group of Gossamer Gear Trail Ambassadors got together for a week together in the Olympics.  more....
  •   My friend Steve, Liz Thomas and I would traverse the Bailey Range from Mount Appleton to Lake Quinault.  Experiencing mis of 80 degree heat, lightning and heavy rains.  more....
  •   Would scout visually into interior Olympics from Mount Angeles, to see if high country travel would still be possible; after a 2 week winter storm.  more....
  •   Day hiked into the Olympics during  the government shutdown.  more....
  • Then finally would attempt to walk from the mountains back to the ocean via the Pacific Northwest Trail.  With a perfect weather forecast, this would be the best and maybe last chance to bring an end to the trail series.   more.... 


Share your thoughts
  I would like to hear from my readers (that means you),  good, bad and ugly comments are welcome. Any questions or suggestions of content you think I should write about?  Feel free to post it all below.  Again, look for the first full trip report in the coming weeks.