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I was just thinking today about a morning trip to Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic National Park we took this past June with my brother, sister-in-law and youngest son.  They were only with us for about 48 hours so when we woke up and saw clear skies and little wind we suggested the steep drive before heading over to Crescent Lake for breakfast.  Where were those photos I took?

This was going to be the earliest in the year, mid-June, that we'd made the trip up.  The summit of the Ridge gets plenty of snow since its normal snowfall is 400+ inches a year!

Any time we have a clear day I think about heading up there, as it feels like such a treat and blessing.

Mid August 2008

What we found over the last couple of years, when we made many trips up from early July through September, was that every time you go you'll see different wildflowers take over the landscape.  Some year I'll have to go up once a week or to capture the changes - wouldn't that be cool?!  You never know if you're going to see deer, elk, mountain goat, bear or an Olympic marmot so keeping your eyes peeled and your camera ready for those opportunities, too, is part of the experience.

We told everyone to be sure to bring a coat, as it can be very windy (duh!) up there and cold.  Turned out it was neither.  It was gorgeous.

The mountain hillside was just clearing of snow.  Grass was just starting to sprout and there were deer everywhere.  I mean hundreds it seemed.  The deer up in the park's higher elevations are acclimated to the climate of the area so they will not have their fawns until late summer. 

A sweet surprise is taking a short hike and looking under trees and shady areas later in the summer in order to spot one of those adorable spotted fawns.

The easy hike we normally take visitors on was extremely short.  We were able to walk to the first viewpoint that overlooks Port Angeles, the strait and over to Victoria, but the rest of the trail was covered in snow.  Not being prepared for a wet and cold walk, we headed back to the visitor's center and one last soak of a gaze at the majestic snow-covered Olympic Range.

View towards Mt BakerOn the long windy way down we pulled off into a view spot and watched a family from the Ukraine hand feed a couple of Gray Jays.  They're beautiful feathery soft looking birds and seemed to have no natural fear of people.

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves. ~John Muir


When I looked at the small

When I looked at the small photo oh FB I expected Julie Andrews to start swirling and singing at me! This is a stunning place. So magical. Someday I must get to Canada.

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