Thursday, September 29, 2011

The Queets Rain Forest in Olympic National Park

From the relatively popular and easily accessible Quinault Rain Forest, we drove in the direction of the more secluded Queets Rain Forest. Our plan was to go on a longer (7-mile) hike there.

The road leading to the trailhead was spectacular and we stopped several times to take pictures (see below). Unfortunately, as we were driving further away from the main road passing through the Olympic NP, the road was getting worse and worse, and finally turned into a steep slippery gravel road. Anil felt uncomfortable driving there and voiced concern that our car did not have sufficient clearance and tire size to go further. Even though I was more optimistic about the capabilities of our car, I agreed with Anil that we should play it safe and turn around. Since we had entered Olympic NP four hours earlier, we met only four other people and saw a handful of cars, and since we had turned into the side road leading to the Queets Rain Forest, we did not meet a single soul. So even a small car accident or a flat tire would have put as in a very difficult situation. Hence, we decided to abort our initial plan of hiking there and head for the beach instead.

However, the little that we saw of the Queets Rain Forest looked very promising, so if you happen to go to Olympic NP in a 4-wheel drive, or at least a high clearance vehicle, be sure to check it out.

The road leading to the Queets Rain Forest: