Friends in Port Angeles, WA 9/4 - 9/7, 2015

After we pulled out of Hoh Ox-bow C/G, we stopped in Forks WA for gas and laundry ... into each life falls the mundane, and then we had a short drive to Port Angeles.  PA is located on the Strait of Juan de Fuca which separates the State of Washington and Vancouver Island, BC.  Jimmy and I had been invited by our friends, Marianne and Steve, to "camp" at their beautiful place in PA, so, by gum, we took them up on it.  The RV parking site was under construction when we arrived, so Steve suggested we park "on the grass."  We enjoyed three blissful nights camped here -- isn't it lovely?  I took the below picture early, early, just as the sun was rising.

Marianne and Steve moved from NorCal to Port Angeles last December and have been entertaining friends and family since the move!  We felt privileged to spend time with them at their new digs.

Scout was the almost the first to greet us when we piloted Tergel up their driveway.  She was/is a happy-go-lucky puppy who walks around nearly every minute of every day with a ball in her mouth.  Usually a purple one!  Her sole mission while we were there was to get one of us to THROW THE BALL.  She'd run like the wind, fetch it, bring it back, and drop it at our feet.  Then, THROW THE BALL!  She was lots of fun.

Saturday morning we trooped down to Port Angeles' farmers market, and bought all kinds of goodies.  A small market, but very nice.  This being Labor Day weekend, Marianne and Steve took us sightseeing, up to Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center in Olympic Nat'l Park (ONP). We weren't the only folks driving there today.  The place was full of visitors, parking at a premium.  This section of ONP was new to Jimmy and me; we'd tried to visit before, but bad weather on the ridge kept us away (it's called "hurricane ridge" for a reason!)  The temp in PA was moderate when we left and about 44 degrees on the ridge -- chilly!  

We ate a quick lunch at a picnic table and walked a fairly short distance on one of the trails.  As usual, in the mountains, very little is flat or level.  Marianne was having right knee difficulty and those downhills were very painful for her.  She and Jimmy discussed knee replacement surgery A LOT.  [she's since made an appointment for replacement surgery]  In the photo above, PA is maybe 15 miles away, and the City of Victoria on Vancouver Island is approx 44 miles distant, across the Straight.  

Black-tailed deer licking each other's necks, in public! 

Haha, you guys -- I have no idea why or at what Jimmy and Marianne are pointing (prob just for fun).  Hurricane Ridge is about a mile high and the Olympic Mountains in the background are not especially high (Mount Olympus is the highest at 7,962'), but they are steep-sided and heavily forested.  Very green, I might add.  Lots of moisture falls in ONP, notably on the western side.

How long will glaciers be found on the Olympic Mountains?
A couple of receding glaciers can be seen above.

Scout, you rascal, all pooped out and resting on the couch!  We had a grand day in ONP, and everyone was tuckered out by evening.  Marianne fed us well, thank you very kindly, my friend!  Fact is, we had a great time with you guys (never a dull moment, huh?).

On Sunday, Steve, Jimmy and I drove to Dungeness Spit on the Straight of Juan de Fuca -- it's a narrow strip of sand, rocks, dune and beached logs, and protrudes over five miles right into the Straight.  (Marianne stayed home to rest her knee.)  You can actually hike all the way to the lighthouse at the tip.  The water is tidal, of course, and -- once again -- the tide was on the rise, tho we had no intention of walking all the way to the end. Nevertheless, we put on quite a few miles today!  We watched a big ol' sea lion hanging around near shore, popping its head up in the water.  Another good hike!

Dungeness Spit Lighthouse:  Keeping guard since 1857 ... the best I could do, zooming five miles away.

Port Angeles was our turn-around point, and now we pointed Tergel south.  Driving alongside the Hood Canal before hitting I-5 is very scenic.  We had no particular destination in mind, and now that Labor Day is officially OVER, RV'ers can usually move about without reservation.  YAY!  We ended up at Seaquest St Pk in Washington, on Spirit Lake Hwy (the road to Mount St Helens) in Castle Rock.  No worries, I tell you -- the park was empty (kinda expensive, too, at $40/night FHU!).  Across the highway is Mount St Helens Visitors Center, which seemed more like a museum.  We stopped in, looking at the exhibits and excellent movie treating on the mountain and the 1980 eruption, followed by an easy one-mile loop walk on the tranquil nature trail around Silver Lake.  Then, home to Tergel.

Tomorrow we move on south....

1 comment:

  1. What a fine place to camp! We just love that area around Port Angeles.....


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