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For a while, I lived in a van. When it was time to explore any given place I usually gave myself an unlimited time limit on my adventuring since I lived where I parked. When it came time to hike in Mt. Rainier National Park, and after already doing my fair share of travel up…

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We’ve all heard the opinion that western Washington is almost perpetually grey and rainy. While that may be the case in winter months, most of the west side is quite temperate and beautiful for much of the rest of the year. However, when it comes to one special west side region, an honest-to-goodness rain forest…

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park

A strategic point of view, the high bluffs just north of Port Townsend, WA, are occupied by Fort Worden State Park and Point Wilson Lighthouse and have served as both look out and safe harbor for indigenous cultures and wartime sailors over the millennia. Now serving the people of Washington as a state park and…

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Considering the seemingly never-ending natural beauty of Washington State, it is sometimes easy to forget about the wonders of the Olympic Peninsula. Sprawling nearly one million acres, Olympic National Park contains three distinct ecosystems – glaciated mountains, rugged Pacific coastline and lush temperate forests. Best part? You can explore it all. Not sure where to…

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Signs of the Volcano's Wrath, Explore Washington State

Mount Saint Helens – Johnston Ridge Observatory   We reached the top of SR 504 at Johnston Ridge Observatory and saw what seemed to be an alien landscape. In the previous entries in this series, I talked about the surrounding forests and how the trees had been replanted. When you reach Johnston Ridge there aren’t any…

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Rebirth of a Forest, Mount Saint Helens

Mount Saint Helens Forest Learning Center    Most folks who remember the eruption of Mount Saint Helens in 1980 remember the monochrome photos of devastation; trees tossed like matchsticks and coated with gray ash, looking more like the surface of the Moon than the lush forests that lived on the mountain previously. Forests have returned…

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Remembering the Day the Mountain Blew

Where were you when the mountain blew?  Mount Saint Helens Visitor Center  If you’ve lived in Washington State very long, you have no doubt been asked this question. For those of us who lived here on that day 38 years ago (yes, it’s really been that long) we can answer that one easily. A major…

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Ape Caves

The Ape Cave, that is.  Concealed within the beautiful Gifford Pinchot National Forest on the southern slopes of Mount Saint Helens is a remarkable opportunity. Discovered in 1951, the Ape Cave is a natural lava tube lying just beneath the forest floor by logger Lawrence Johnson. He brought back Harry Reese and family to discover…

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Point Robinson Lighthouse

destination Video of the Point Robinson Lighthouse on Maury Island – Vashon Park District – March 2018 About Point Robinson Since 1885 Point Robinson has provided “fog and lighthouse service” on the east end of Maury Island (although most visitors would think of it as part of the larger Vashon Island). The lighthouse is a…

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The Hoh Rainforest

We’ve all heard the opinion that western Washington is almost perpetually grey and rainy. While that may be the case in winter months, most of the west side is quite temperate and beautiful for much of the rest of the year.  However, when it comes to one special west side region, an honest-to-goodness rain forest…

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