Sol Duc – Lake Crescent – Neah Bay

The plan for today is to head to Sol Duc Falls and Lake Crescent. It rained hard again all night, making it hard to sleep with the rain pounding on the canopy. The canopy also developed a leak around the window seal, which was fixed when we got back home. We were camped at Three Rivers RV Park, NE of Forks, Washington.   It was still raining hard in the morning, figuring it didn’t make sense getting wet to make coffee, we drove to Forks to fill up. There was road construction around Lake Crescent and some turnouts I wanted to stop at were blocked off by the construction. So we kept going to Sol Duc Falls, the rain finally slowed down, and it almost stopped by the time we got to the trail head.

Walking along the trail we came to this beautiful little cascading waterfall. Trying to find the right composition and not get to far off the trail was a challenge. There was not a name on the map for the stream, but it looks like melting snow and rain keep it running most of the year.

Along Sol Duc Trail

An unnamed stream along the Sol Duc Falls Trail

An unnamed stream along the Sol Duc Falls Trail

An unnamed stream along the Sol Duc Falls Trail

The trail to Sol Duc Falls is about 1.6 miles round trip. You can hear the falls before you see them. Just as the water fall comes into view this shelter is off to the left.

A shelter on trail near Sol Duc Falls

There was more and more snow as we got to the Sol Duc Falls. We were just a little early in the year, and there was not much color around the falls. There was a lot of spray coming off the falls, making it hard to keep the lens clear of water droplets. Late spring or early summer it is possible to capture a rainbow here when the sun is out, but not today.

Sol Duc Falls in Olympic National Park

We hiked back out to the trail head and put the raincoats away for the day. After a quick stop at the Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort, we headed back to Lake Crescent. Parking at the trail head to Marymere Falls we stood in the sunshine and ate lunch. Rather than hike to Marymere Falls, since we had seen several other more photogenic falls, we decided to hike to the lodge.

We walked along the Moments in Time Trail toward the Lake Crescent Lodge. Stopping along the way to read the informational placards. This tree had the center burned out of it, but was still alive.

A fire burned part of the core of this tree, but it still lives on. Along the trail to Lake Crescent Lodge

Arriving at the lake we sat down and watched as the wind picked up, and the storm clouds rolled in. We wondered if we would need to pull our rain coats back out of our packs.

 Lake Crescent, Olympic National Park

The view near Lake Crescent Lodge in Olympic National Park

The lodge, which was built in 1915, is closed in March, but the view from the deck was gorgeous.

The view from the deck at Lake Crescent Lodge in the Olympic National Park

Regrouping after getting back to the PU, I checked the weather forecast. The sunset forecast was better tomorrow night for Rialto Beach or Second Beach, so time for more exploring. We decided to head to Cape Flattery, which is the at the northwest tip of the Olympic Peninsula. Along the way we saw another herd of elk near the community of Pysht, Washington.

We got to Neah Bay at 4:45, I wanted to stop by the Makah Museum there, but they closed at 5:00. We stopped at the general store to purchase our recreation permit. Neah Bay and Cape Flattery are on the Makah Indian Reservation. The recreation permit cost $10.00 and is good for 1 year. Interestingly the High School mascot is the Red Devils, I figured they can choose any mascot they want.

On the way to the Cape Flattery Trail we stopped at Hobuck’s Beach Resort to get a camp spot. There were several Eagles hanging out near the turn for the campground.

Eagle on the Makah Indian Reservation Eagle on the Makah Indian Reservation Eagle on the Makah Indian Reservation

 Cape Flattery

It was about a 6 mile drive to the trail head, then a 1.5 mile out and back hike. This interesting tree was along one section of boardwalk trail.

Interesting tree on the Cape Flattery Trail

This is one of the view points just a short distance from the end of the trail.

Sea stacks from a view Point along the Cape Flattery Trail

Then the view toward Tatoosh Island at the end of the trail.

The North West point of Washington State

We hiked back to the trail head and drove back down the hill toward camp. Arriving back at the campground, I started to get the camp stove going to cook up some dinner. Looking out at the beach I saw the clouds rolling in as the setting sun light up the sky.

Sunset at Hobuck Beach, Makah Indian Reservation, Washington

This image was taken a few minutes later.

Sunset at Hobuck Beach on the Makah Indian Reservation, Neah Bay, Washington

Tomorrow we are headed to Rialto Beach, north of La Push and Hole in the Wall, which is about 1.5 miles up the beach.





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