Friday, July 1, 2016

Two Cedars and Ruby Beach (Olympic NP), 6/26/2016

Dogs are only permitted in selected areas and specific trails of Olympic National Park and the beaches at Kalaloch along the Pacific Coast are one of those areas. Continuing  south on Highway 101 from the Hoh Rain Forest area, we stopped first at what is reportedly the world's largest cedar tree. It is not located in the park, but is accessible by about 5 miles of narrow back roads through the forest. You will see signs indicating the left turn off of 101 when traveling south to find it.

While we initially thought it looked dead, it is, in fact, still growing. 

There is no charge to visit the tree and since we have been on a major tree-seeing journey, we were glad we stopped for a quick visit. 

Next stop was the Kalaloch Ranger Station (located on Highway 101) that is part of Olympic National Park

Nearby is another massive cedar tree, called Big Cedar. This one is located in Olympic NP.

We headed north on Highway 101 about 5 miles to Ruby Beach, one of the six beaches along the coast between the Quinalt and Hoh Indian Reservations. There is a short .2 mi trail to the beach from the parking area. Our first glimpse of the beach was from the trail. You must initially climb over logs, but then they thin out as you near the coastline.

As with most of the beaches along this stretch of the West Coast, large and small sea stacks can be seen providing picturesque views. 

Destruction Island Lighthouse construction began in 1890 and went into operation a year later. It was automated in 1968 and decommissioned in 2008. Destruction Island is about 3 miles from the coast. 

What a beautiful day it was! We have found that the weather here can change in minutes from overcast to bright sunshine. We are beginning to love the Pacific Northwest!

There is no admission fee to the Kalaloch area of Olympic National Park. For additional information about the park, check it out online.


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