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Old 07-21-2018, 12:04 PM   #1
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Olympic Peninsular

We are currently on a cross country excursion, and have now been on the road for 52 days. We are currently camped in Bruceport, Washington. From here we are planning to go up US 101 on the west side of the Olympic Peninsular. Along the way, we are going to go out on the coast where possible. Tomorrow we plan to camp at Copalis Beach, Washington for a couple of days.

Even though we have been in Washington several times in the past, we have never been to the Olympic Peninsular.

We are looking for input from from AirForums Members as to what to see, where to go (or not go), and where to camp while we are here. We are equipped to boondock, but prefer at least electric if we can get it. We don't have any specific time limit on our stay.

There is a concurrent thread on this trip, titled Lucy's 2018 Western Adventure. We thought it would be better to start another thread for the Olympic Peninsular information to keep things less confusing.

Brian
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Old 07-21-2018, 01:20 PM   #2
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Olympic Peninsular

Staircase CG on Lake Cushman is a gorgeous place.

You could if time allows go to Cape Flattery and say you have been to the most NW point of the lower 48.

Hoh rain forest if you like moss.

Lake Crescent is a stunning drive and lake to see. There are places to camp there but depending on timing can be full.

Port Townsend marina campground waterfront sights are tight but offer a fantastic view of the Straights of Juan Defuca AND there is a great restaurant steps away from your site!

Hope these help, have fun

P.S. Deception Pass SP is a gem for forest, beach, hikes, lake fishing or just enjoying life and should be seen if you can.
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Old 07-21-2018, 01:23 PM   #3
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I enjoyed a trip up that way a few years ago.
I was surprised at the extent of reforested areas, had thought the area was more old growth pristene Forrest. Still very pretty.
A lot for the coast is hard to reach as the road does go inland for quite a ways.

One spot that comes to mind is a short trail to the beach called Spruce Burl Trail.
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Old 07-21-2018, 01:34 PM   #4
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The beaches along that coast seem pretty empty of people, but loaded with drift wood logs, tons of timber.

My pics tell me that this is near Forks.


Continuing north and around into the straights I chose to stay on the coast on 112. Then later back tracked in the car to check out Cresent Lake, really beautiful area that does have at least one RV camping spot, along the north side as I remember it. Next to a lodge and restaurant.
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Old 07-21-2018, 01:37 PM   #5
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I'm tagging along on this post since we'll be up that way in a few weeks!
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Old 07-21-2018, 01:48 PM   #6
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Don't miss a day trip up to Hurricane Ridge, in the Olympics Nat Park.
Great views if you luck out and find it clear.

Port Townsend is fun to check out with many old Victorian houses and lots of seafaring history.

Looking forward to hearing about your adventures up that way.

Cheers Richard
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Old 07-21-2018, 02:21 PM   #7
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Another vote for Cape Flattery, and Rialto Beach (pictures respectively). In addition to the other suggestions these are well worth the time and effort to visit.
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Old 07-21-2018, 02:25 PM   #8
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Brian, I have enjoyed reading your posts over the years. Look into the Hoh Rain Forest on the Peninsula. The Olympic Peninsula (no r) is a magnificent part of the state. Deception Pass is very nice but not on the peninsula. All the other suggestions have been good.


We camped in the Hoh many years ago in a tent. It was a trip we still remember. I am not sure how many sites are there or if there are any restrictions. Google it and see. This time of year you might have to have reservations.


Best wishes
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Old 07-21-2018, 02:39 PM   #9
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Olympic Peninsula

Being native Wash-a-tonians, the Olympic Peninsula has long been one of our favorite places to go. If you can possibly do so, drive the Peninsula in a counter-clockwise direction (North to South); the pullouts will be easy to hit when you see something you want to stop and photograph.

Otherwise, you'll always be trying to make a near-impossible crossing to the other side to park, and oddly enough, you have next to no warning of a good place to pull off. Going South to North on the Peninsula drive is really disappointing in a way, because there are next to no really good places to stop and let traffic by, or to just stop and stretch your legs and take a photo.

In no particular order:

Sequim has a really nice park to stay in as a place to begin your journey on the Peninsula; the spaces are dry-camping only (no power or water) but there is a place to get water on your way in that has a nice big turnaround so you can position the trailer properly. Sequim also is one of the sunniest, dryest places in the state with very little rainfall. It is an anomaly to the rest of the Peninsula where the rain never seems to quit in the Rain Forests.

If you like a truly backcountry experience on the 'inside' of the Peninsula, the Hamma Hamma River area can't be beat. It used to be highly primitive, but I'm not sure if it has been developed since the last time I've been there, which was more than a dozen years ago.

There are a couple of Forest Service parks on your way South along the Peninsula that used to be nice places to stay, but the power used to be 'iffy'. And yes, this is in the heart of the Rain Forest. Warm enough for us locals to stand outside in a bathing suit to take a shower in the rain. Yes, it rains THAT hard there sometimes.

One really pleasant surprise in your Peninsula drive comes up at Forks. "Twilight" movie stuff aside, the Quileute Nation has a gorgeous campground all the way out by the ocean. The sites aren't private, but the views are stunning. And one thing - being Native land, one must remember to conduct oneself as a guest.

On edit:
One other comes to mind. Fort Worden State Park. A great place to go walking or biking; weather tends to be temperate, and the park is well-kept.

Hurricane Ridge used to have a park campground run by the National Park Service. I seem to recall that there might be some restrictions on length.

Of note: All of these are going to require reservations during this time of year.

Hope that helps.
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Old 07-21-2018, 05:46 PM   #10
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And I forgot to mention Dosiewallups State Park. Lots of nice spaces, and close to Paulsbo, which used to have a Scandinavian theme.
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Old 07-22-2018, 08:32 AM   #11
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Thank you for all the information. We are moving Lucy to Copalis Beach today. That will put us at the southwest corner of the Peninsular.


Brian
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Old 07-22-2018, 09:11 AM   #12
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We did it once years ago and loved the area. Going counter-clockwise makes a lot of sense. Wish we'd thought to do it that way.
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Old 07-22-2018, 10:13 AM   #13
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It has been many years since Susan and I have been to the Olympic penninsula.

Lake Quinault Lodge is a classic and a great place for a leisurely sit down meal. There are several USFS campgrounds on Lake Quinault, but I'm not sure Lucy will fit.

Port Townsend is a great town to check out. Dungeness County park is nearby and right on Puget Sound. We actually dug enough clams for a chowder near our camp site!

Hurricane Ridge has the best views of the high Olympic Mountains and their glaciers. Unless the road has been redone, probably best not to pull Lucy up there--long, narrow, winding, with big drop offs. Scenic, tho!

Have a great visit!
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Old 07-22-2018, 11:29 AM   #14
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Hi Brian, South Beach is just north of you. It is dry camping on the beach. If you want the beach experience that is the place. Kalaloch is beautiful, The Hoh rain forest is a must see, you can park Lucy and drive in if you want for convenience however there is a campground. Forks is the home of the Twilight movie series if you are into that, lots of the filming sites. They also have a great timber museum. Neah Bay/Cape Flattery is as far northwest as you can get in the US. There is also a Tribal museum there.

Going East Crescent Lake is the most beautiful lake in the northwest. A short drive to Joyce where the General store is a must. A short distance to Salt Creek, a county campground on a low bluff right on the Strait with great views of Vancouver Island and Victoria. There are steps to the tide pools and 2 gun embankments from WW2, which housed the 16" big guns.

Port Angeles is home of the Black Ball Ferry that you can walk on for $15 for a ninety minute trip to Victoria. You need a passport or enhanced drivers license. A ride to Hurricane Ridge, less than 15 miles will put you at 5400 feet elevation and great views. Port Angeles also has a great underground tour.

Heading east we have a camp site ready for you and the price is right. Check your PM. Voice of America is a county park and the entrance to Dungeness Light House if you are ready for a hike across the sand spit. Sequim is the center of the rain shadow and the home of the Lavender Festival which is this weekend but there is plenty of lavender left after the festival.

Port Townsend is a beautiful Victorian harborside town. Home of the Wooden Boat Show, Ft. Flagler and Ft. Warden and the ferry to Whidbey Island and Deception Pass or you can stay on the peninsula and head to Hood Canal. Dosewallup is a state campground with a resident elk herd for your entertainment. You can continue down the canal to Hamma Hamma, Potlatch, Rest A While and many other campgrounds all the way to the state Capital at Olympia.
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