Washington Coast Day Two: Our second day at the coast started out sunny, and though it didn’t last, it got us through most of our hike in the Hoh Rain Forest.
I start with this picture of my beauty products because silly as it may seem, um, this is a sign of my growth. A decade ago you would not even want to see what I packed for a weekend trip, even “roughing it.” Now I really do have it down to the bare essentials. This stuff and toothpaste.
Anyway, the one thing I do not have a picture of is the most important thing to happen on the trip. We saw our first bald eagle. I have been on the lookout for an eagle since we moved here and was starting to think I might be the only person in Seattle to never see one, but as we drove into the Hoh Rain Forest, Scott and I both had a… HOLY SHIT THAT IS AN EAGLE moment. It was a nice start to our biggest hike yet.
We’re new to this whole hiking thing and generally go about 5 miles roundtrip max. This hike was supposed to be ten. There were several places along the path where we had, “Umm, how to navigate this?” moments, including a really huge as tree that we had to heave ourselves over, and had we not run into the first other hikers of the day who helped me, I might not have been brave enough because if I had slid down that giant slippery tree trunk it would have been very, very bad. That’s why it was disappointing when we got to a little creek that due to all the rain was running faster and deeper than the board that was set there could handle. Basically we either could risk slipping into the water and completely soaking our feet and shins (and maybe cell phones too knowing my klutzy luck) or we could have taken off our shoes and waded… but we didn’t have a towel and it was like 40 degrees out. Being the child of two nurses, I knew that soaking your feet in cold water in that kind of weather with almost four miles back to your car is Not Wise. So we cut it short. It was still a solid and gorgeous 7 mile hike, we got to eat picnic lunch along the river before it started raining hard, and on our way out, we saw what we think were elk grazing!
We decided to check out First Beach once we got back to the Forks/La Push area, but by that point the wind and rain was so wild we couldn’t even get out of the car to take pictures.
Still, eagle and visit to a massive North American rain forest? It was pretty awe inspiring, and we did get a slightly calmer beach fix the next morning before we left, which once again, I will bring to you tomorrow!