Backpacking Across Route (ONP)

I will be joining someone else's trip plan for this section of adventure. I had originally planned to travel in a different direction, but when I heard this fun group of guys were walking across the Olympic National Park I did what I could to join them. It was a nice change of pace from spending so much time alone. Nice to have someone to joke and laugh with, as well as share any struggles along the way.

We would walk the length of the Park in three days - from north to south. Most of the time was spent walking or thinking about walking. The above average heat for Washington State wouldn't help our endurance. The hot temperatures left me craving anything with salt in it - on top of my sodium rich dinners. We all consumed gallons of water to compete with the rate of perspiration. Water consumption competed with walking as a daily task. Good thing the Olympic Mountains have an abundance of water.

Editor's Note: Article part of an extended trek in the Olympic Mountains.

pacific northwest trail
After grabbing more food, we hit the trail on the NE side of the Park with the goal of walking to the SE corner. I accompanied two hikers that were nice enough to invite me on their trip. Here we are walking on a section of the Pacific Northwest Trail during an 80+ degree day.

home lake
A lovely place for a bath on the PNT. I enjoyed a cool-off during a hot day in the mountains.  
Constance pass
Del Monte Ridge panoramic.
del monte ridge
Del Monte Ridge panoramic number two.
del monte ridge
We're off - cruising down Del Monte Ridge. Love ridge walking on a sunny day. Next stop, Dosewallips River.
west fork dosewallips trail
Walking up the Dosewallips River drainage remanence of powerful avalanches can be seen. Would not want to be around when this thing went off.
anderson pass trail
 Making our way over Anderson Pass on a hot summer day, a bit of shade was appreciated. It would not help with the bugs however. We would need a bit of breeze on the windward side to help with that.
anderson pass
It was a hot and hazy day in the Olympics. All I wanted to do was go sit in the river to cool off. Here is a peek into Mount Anderson.
white creek
Descending the slopes of Anderson, on our way out the Quinault drainage, we encountered a log bridge that had been swept away during spring melt. Perfect time to cool our feet and enjoy the cool mist coming from the falls.
Enchanted Valley Chalet
 Here we are at the world-famous Enchanted Valley Chalet in the Quinault drainage. Constructed in the 1930's for hunters and such, it was eventually taken over by the Park Service. The river is working its way towards the foundation of this structure. If it’s on your list, see it while you can. I was spoiled enough to spend three nights inside the structure last spring - shooting video and photos of black bear.
black bear
On the way out we ended up seeing a couple black bears. This surprised me as I figured they would be at higher elevations during this time of year. Guess they like the cooler temperatures at plush valleys when it is hot. This was one of 50+ bear encounters this year.

Part of the 'Walking through the Seasons' Trail Series

Updated July 2015 by Barefoot Jake