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06/26/18 - Little River Trail

With so many roads in the park blocked by road work, we've been checking out some new trails. This time it was the Little River Trail. It starts near where Black Diamond Road meets Little River Road. As usual in 2018, Black Diamond Road was being repaved, but the delays were short. We only hiked out for an hour, but it was nice walking on a soft surface and being in the forest again. The first part of the trail was second growth, but there were more old trees and more first growth as we made our way up the trail.

The trilliums were past bloom, but the Pacific dogwood was out. The trail heads all the way up to Hurricane Ridge, but we stopped well before the serious climbing began. We turned around at the second crossing, so we have a lot left to explore. It's nice to have a new trail, and one that isn't a challenge to get to.


A typical stretch of trail

The trail follows the water

Epiphytes

More river

Pacific dogwood

A little more river

The bridge where we turned back

Some cascades

Another look at the river

A more Little River

A rather large trillium, past bloom

Keywords: trails, trillium


05/17/18 - Sol Duc Falls And Beyond

We braved the construction on Route 101 along Lake Crescent and were pleased to only be delayed perhaps twenty minutes on our way west. Our goal was the Sol Duc Falls trailhead where we made our way first to the falls, in full spring rush, and then onward and upwards to the bridge over Canyon Creek. We almost climbed 1000'. Deer Lake was another 600' or so, but we had climbed all we could.

There was no snow on the trail, though we did see patches of snow in the woods. We did see lots of trilliums and lots of running water in the Sol Duc River, in Canyon Creek and seeping from the rocks and pooling on the trail. It's a beautiful but tiring trail. We returned to the car happy but exhausted. We encountered another twenty minute delay on the way back, but we considered the extra time on the road well worth it.


Sol Duc Falls

A trillium

A curtain of drips

Some unmelted snow

Another trillium, artfully arranged

Canyon Creek

A double header

Canyon Creek again

A minor waterway

The forest

Even more trilliums

Keywords: lake crescent, sol duc, spring, trillium


05/07/18 - Even More Trilliums

This is the time of year we post pictures of trilliums. They are a sure sign of spring, and by this time of year, we are eager for a bit of spring.

A trillium

More trilliums

Yet another trillium

That's right. That's the High Line in New York City.

Definitely the city

Along the Hudson

Another Hudson view

Just a little fishing village, with trilliums

Typical New York City - health advice from a truck

Keywords: spring, trillium, new york city


04/28/18 - Trilliums on the Lake Angeles Trail

Between winter conditions and road repairs, we haven't been hiking the Lake Angeles Trail lately. We finally made our way back, and were pleasantly rewarded. The trail is as beautiful as ever, the trilliums were starting to bloom, and aside from some gravel stretches, the road wasn't much of a problem.

The little stream, one view

A trillium

Another trillium, just getting ready to bloom

Yet another trillium

Another view of the little stream

Keywords: lake angeles, trillium, spring


04/26/18 - Spring Comes to the West Elwha

We took a walk west of the Elwha River and saw definite signs of springs. There were trilliums in bloom and columbines in profusion. Spring is here.

One of the many trilliums

Water crossing the trail

More trilliums

Old forest, signs of moisture

Another trillium

A columbine

More columbines

The boardwalk

More flowers

The Elwha River coming ...

... and going

Keywords: elwha, spring, trillium


06/15/17 - Lake Angeles Trail

The Lake Angeles Trail is great for a workout. It's only a ten minute drive from town, so it's often our fallback for exercise when we don't have a lot of time. On our last trip we got to experience the season with trilliums both ready to open and already with pods having bloomed some time ago. The Pacific dogwood was like this too, with both slightly green early flowers as well as white ones in full bloom.

The bridge on the Lake Angeles Trail

White water

Water under the bridge

Early Pacific dogwood

Pacific dogwood in full bloom

An early trillium

A late season trillium

More water

And even more water

Keywords: flowers, lake angeles, trillium


05/07/17 - Sol Duc and Beyond - Part 1

Our latest trip to the Sol Duc Valley had some excitement. We spotted a young bear not too far from the trailhead. We had been driving along enjoying the scenery, deep green forest with occasional views of the Sol Duc River. Then we saw the car ahead of us stopped in the middle of the road. That means one thing in a national park, a wildlife sighting. It was a young black bear, but we only had quick look at him or her. However, on our way back, we had a much longer and better look.

The falls themselves are full of water, but not quite as wild as we have ever seen them. It was quite possible to cross the bridge over the river at the falls dry shod. As the spring and summer melt progresses, the flow will increase, and the spray will get much wilder.

We headed up trail on the far side of the river, taking the trail to Deer Lake. The trail meanders for a ways with little streams and curtains of drips, then it follows Canyon Creek which flows down from the lake. We made it to the bridge, about 500 feet above the falls. By this point we had run into some patches of snow on and beside the trail. Looking upstream we could see more snow above, melting and feeding Canyon Creek.

That was our sign to turn around and head back. We'll get in shape for further climbing while the snow melts. So we'll be back.


The young black bear by the road

Forest

A stream

Sol Duc Falls

The Sol Duc River

Some snow

Snow covered hills

Canyon Creek

Canyon Creek with the snow above

The bridge over the creek

A trillium

Keywords: deer lake, sol duc, trillium


04/22/17 - Elwha River Trail - Part 1

With Olympic Hot Springs Road open again, we've been heading up to Whiskey Bend and revisiting the Elwha River Trail. We've already made it to the overlook before the second canyon on the way to Lilian Camp and down past Michael's Ranch for a look at the Elwha River. The trails are still a bit muddy, but lots of people are about celebrating the area's reopening. We've been celebrating this year's crop of trilliums and are looking forward to a great hiking season.

A trillium

A view from the overlook

A tree down across the trail

Another trillium

Another bit of trail

One of the many streams

Yet another trillium

Those yellow violets

The trail is beautiful on a sunny day

Our first slug of the season

Mysterious alligator leaves

Keywords: elwha, spring, trails, trillium


04/21/17 - Elwha River Trail - Part 2

The last photo in Part 1 is of a mysterious alligator leaf, something we had never noticed before on this trail. On our second trip we solved the mystery. Those are columbine leaves. We have never seen columbines growing in this area before, so we were quite pleased. They've been added to the regional treasure trove along with the trilliums, orchids and yellow violets.

The Elwha River itself is well upstream of the dam, but each year we have seen more brush growing across the river bed. When we first started visiting, over a decade ago, there was some scrub, but now there are substantial bushes. Has the river changed? This part wasn't affected by the dam removal, so this is another mystery.


One of our favorite waterfalls

Another view

The trail

The river

Another view of the river

More of the trail

An orchid

Another orchid

A columbine - the mystery of the alligator leaves solved

Yet another columbine

Even more columbines

Keywords: elwha, trillium, waterfall


04/20/17 - Elwha River Trail - Part 3

The Elwha River Trail out of Whiskey Bend is in pretty good shape, but on our way down to Michael's Ranch we were warned not to linger for a stretch. There were overhead hazards, presumably falling branches. This was the stretch with one of our favorite waterfalls, so we did stop briefly to admire it, but not for long.

This stretch of trail is also being rebuilt a bit. We chatted briefly with two of the trail workers rebuilding a stretch of boardwalk. They were hard at it. Presumably, their work is done, and we'll be spared a bit of mud on our next hike that way.


Warning, warning

Thank you, trail maintainers!

Another view of the boardwalk work

Some forest

A bonus trillium

Keywords: elwha, trillium, waterfall


04/18/16 - Trilliums

We spotted our first trilliums along Piedmont Road. Then we took a short walk along the Spruce Railroad Trail, and there were trilliums galore. It is still early in the trillium season, so we’ll be getting out and keeping our eyes open.

Trilliums

Another trillium

More trilliums

Even more trilliums

Yet another beauty

Paintbrush!

False Solomon’s seal, just coming into bloom

Yet, another trillium

It’s a great year for the trilliums.

A snail

Guess what?

Keywords: spruce railroad, trillium


06/25/15 - Lake Angeles

Somehow or another we managed to get up to Lake Angeles. It involved a two thousand three hundred and ninety foot climb along a lovely wooded trail we often think of as a cathedral with the long bare trees of the forest understory resembling pillars. The lake was as beautiful as ever. The water was clear and the high cliffs were devoid of snow. It was a hard, wonderful climb. There really isn't all that much more to say.

The mountains across the lake

Driftwood

Someone made a raft.

Columbine

Pillars of the cathedral

Trilliums, some over a foot across

Mysterious plants we think of as Indian pipes

More mystery

Mystery in white - Wilkie Collins?

This was a great year for these.

Happy faces on the bridge

Keywords: lake angeles, trillium


05/24/15 - Late Spring on the Spruce Railroad Trail

Spring is really moving along the Spruce Railroad Trail. The trilliums have already peaked, and the vegetation is getting lush. Summer is less than a month away.

Lush vegetation

Mock Solomon's seal or is it false mock Solomon's seal?

We aren't sure about this. Maybe we missed the "Don't drink and kayak." sign.

Keywords: spring, spruce railroad, summer, trillium


04/16/15 - Barnes Creek

We've been getting out to the Marymere Falls a fair bit lately. This time we decided to head up Barnes Creek a bit and see how spring is progressing in the valley. The whole area is a riot of green with the trees, ferns, mosses and undergrowth all contributing to the wild forest scene. There were also trilliums in bloom, another sign of the season. If you do get out to the falls, consider following the creek a bit and checking out the spring scenery.

A trillium

A moss covered rock

The green scene

A little waterfall along the trail

That waterfall again

More green

Another trillium

Barnes Creek

Yet more trilliums

Another view of the creek

And another

Keywords: barnes creek, marymere falls, spring, trillium


04/04/15 - First Trilliums of the Year

These were blooming on one of the trails behind Peninsula College. We saw a few just starting to bloom on Piedmont Road, and there are trilliums coming up along the Spruce Railroad Trail, but these were not even close to blooming yet.

Already!

Keywords: spring, trillium


05/26/14 - Lake Angeles Trail in Bloom

The trilliums are passing, but the Oregon grape is in bloom along with the pacific dogwood, tiarella and a few other flowers. This is the second wave, but it is coming right along. We've made it past the half way point to the lake, but we have a good bit of getting in shape ahead of us. Still, the high country beckons, so next time, excelsior.

We aren't sure what this is, but it's pretty.

Some latter day trilliums

Mahonia aka Oregon grape

Wild water at the crossing

More wild water

Pacific dogwood

... and more dogwood

Tiarella

... and more tiarella

New growth on the salal almost looks like flowers.

A sylvan collage

Keywords: flowers, high country, oregon, trillium


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