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mtn.climber
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PostFri Aug 29, 2014 11:56 am 
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Okay, so I told a little white lie. liar.gif   It was really only 98 miles.  But if you count all the extra side trips for water, etc., it would be over 100 miles.  Also, I'm counting the day we drove over as part of the 10 days, since it was part of the adventure.

DAY 1 (Wenatchee-Klahowya)
Derek (Rocknclimb) and I left Wenatchee and made stops at REI and Trader Joes before driving to the ranger station at Lake Quinault for the usual check-in procedure.  We then headed north and camped at Klahowya campground near the Solduc entrance.
Just in case I run into any Chinooks
Just in case I run into any Chinooks
Mossy branches
Mossy branches

DAY 2 (Solduc-Cat Basin.  11.8 miles.  3823' total ascent.  6.5 hours)
We hiked the trail along the Solduc river thru mossy forest before climbing up thru Solduc Park to Heart Lake.  The blueberries and huckleberries were everywhere, which slowed our pace.  It turned out we would rarely be out of reach of berries at any point during the next 9 days.  Just above Heart Lake we spotted our first bear of the trip.  Looked like he was enjoying the berries as much as we did.  From there, we hiked down to Cat Basin and set up camp.
Soleduc river
Soleduc river
Soleduc river trail
Soleduc river trail
Ptarmagin
Ptarmagin
Heart lake
Heart lake

DAY 3 (Cat Basin-Lunch Lake.  12.1 miles.  3331'.  7 hours)
We headed off towards the Catwalk, with the idea of crossing the Bailey Range.  But the steep sidehilling and our heavy packs changed our mind.  We then reversed our route and headed back towards High Divide and Seven Lakes Basin.  The views of the north side of Mt. Olympus were jaw-dropping.  It is on our to-do list in the next couple of years.  The route along high divide keeps climbing until Mt. Bogachiel.  A short trail led us to the summit.  After that, we dropped down to Lunch Lake.  The entire basin area was really beautiful.  We had deer visit us late in the evening until we went to bed.  By the sounds of it, they hung around the area for most of the night.
Mt. Olympus
Mt. Olympus
Seven Lakes Basin
Seven Lakes Basin
Lunch lake
Lunch lake
Round lake
Round lake

DAY 4 (Lunch Lake-Falls Creek.  8.2 miles.  1153'.  4.5 hours)
The worst part of camping in the basin is the 500' climb to regain the main trail.  After that, we cruised down to Deer Lake.  From there, it was another 3 miles to Solduc Falls and large crowds.  We carefully maneuvered our large packs thru the masses and made it to the car safely.  We then drove back to Lake Quinault and grabbed the last campsite at Falls Creek to await the second half of our adventure.
Soleduc falls
Soleduc falls

DAY 5 (Falls Creek-12 Mile Camp.  14.3 miles.  2447'.  6 hours)
We started off the morning by re-visiting the ranger station and changing our itinerary.  Then we lightened our packs by dumping out lots of unneeded gear.  We drove to the North Fork trailhead and began hiking again.  The trail stays near the river without lots of elevation gain for the first several miles.  We crossed lots of bridges that spanned deep chasms and washouts.  Our plan was to stay at Trapper Shelter for the night.  When we arrived we were greeted by swarms of hungry mosquitoes looking for their next victims.  We decided to push on and made it to the much nicer 12-mile camp alongside the river.  Not quite sure why they call it 12-mile camp, since my GPS tracked it at 14 miles?
Trapper shelter.  Don't stay here!
Trapper shelter.  Don't stay here!
Mushroom tree
Mushroom tree
Pak-It-Gourmet Chile.  Yummy!
Pak-It-Gourmet Chile.  Yummy!

DAY 6 (12 Mile Camp-Low Divide.  9 miles.  2278'.  3.5 hours)
Soon after starting we had to cross the North Fork river.  From there, the trail gains until near Low Divide.  We planned two nights here.  After dropping our gear at the campsite, we hiked down to Margaret and Mary lakes for a refreshing dip.  It was nice sitting around a fire that night, and knowing we wouldn't have to pack up first thing in the morning.
Crossing the North Fork Quinault
Crossing the North Fork Quinault
Lake Margaret
Lake Margaret
Storm clouds...but no rain
Storm clouds...but no rain

DAY 7 (Martin Lakes dayhike.  7 miles.  1975'.  5.5 hours)
What to do on our rest day?  Hike, of course! doh.gif   Our original plan was to try and climb Mt. Seattle from Low Divide, but we couldn't figure out the route.  So we decided to climb it the next day from the Skyline trail.  Instead, we hiked up to Martin Park, then to Martin Lakes.  A great walk to a high cirque under Mt. Christie.  Glaciers and waterfalls greeted us along the way.  From the park, it's just a bit further to the two lakes.  On the way back we climbed up onto the shoulder of Mt. Christie for some more amazing views.  The Elwha snowfinger was visible, as was much of the southern half of the Bailey range.
One of the two Martin lakes
One of the two Martin lakes
Mts. Seattle, Cougar and Noyes from Martin lakes trail
Mts. Seattle, Cougar and Noyes from Martin lakes trail
Derek relaxing at Martin lakes
Derek relaxing at Martin lakes
Mt. Christie
Mt. Christie
Across the valley from Mt. Christie
Across the valley from Mt. Christie

DAY 8 (Low Divide-Lake Beauty.  11.5 miles.  4856'.  10.5 hours)
Our first day on the Skyline trail.  We climbed up from Low Divide around Mt. Seattle.  Derek definitely wanted to try and summit.  A route from the Olympic Climbing Guide book convinced us to try from the gully that seperates Noyes and Seattle from the west side.  We hiked up a rocky basin until reaching a snow field below the steep gully.  It was scary climbing (at least to me) as everything was loose.  When the gully reached its' steepest part, we scrambled left and climbed thru easily breakable shale to reach the saddle 130' below the summit.  The strain of the climb took its' toll on me and I stopped at the saddle.  Derek proceeded to climb up the ridge and reached the summit about 10 minutes later.  It was just as troublesome to hike down the gully (or maybe I should say slide down).  We continually knocked rocks down as we tried to stay upright.  We finally regained the Skyline trail 4 hours after we left it.  From there it was a long drop to Seattle Creek basin, then a long climb back up before we reached Lake Beauty.  The 500' drop to the lake seemed pretty easy, but we were both totally worn out by the time we set up camp.
Waterfall along the Skyline
Waterfall along the Skyline
Heading up the steep gully towards the Mt. Seattle summit.  Beware of crappy, loose rock.
Heading up the steep gully towards the Mt. Seattle summit.  Beware of crappy, loose rock.
Mt. Seattle (or how to make the Skyline trail even more difficult)
Mt. Seattle (or how to make the Skyline trail even more difficult)
Views from near Mt. Seattle summit
Views from near Mt. Seattle summit
More views from Mt. Seattle
More views from Mt. Seattle
Derek atop Mt. Seattle
Derek atop Mt. Seattle
Lake Beauty
Lake Beauty
Peaks around Lake Beauty
Peaks around Lake Beauty
Sunset
Sunset

DAY 9 (Lake Beauty-Three Prunes.  12 miles.  4367'.  9 hours)
Not really recovered from the previous day, this one would prove to be the hardest for me.  After leaving Lake Beauty, the trail climbs and the landscape totally changes as we wound our way thru an almost moonscape setting.  First on bits of rock, then entirely on rock.  The trail disappears, but we easily spotted cairns that kept us on track.  Eventually we reached a saddle and began to drop into the next basin.  From there, it was a long climb up to reach Kimta peak, where views of the south side of Olympus and the Queets river flowing to the Pacific are amazing.  After that, it was about 5 miles of up/down hiking (no water) to our camp at Three Prunes.  Shortly before arriving, we crested a ridge and spotted our second bear of the trip.  This one was only about 30 yards away.  He didn't care about us, as the berries were much more interesting.  Eventually he got bored of us watching him, and he wandered off down the ridge.  At camp that evening, we had another young bear barking at us from the treeline.  Maybe he was mad that we took his site. smile.gif
Skyline trail between Lake Beauty and Kimta peak
Skyline trail between Lake Beauty and Kimta peak
Skyline trail
Skyline trail
Mt. Olympus from Kimta peak
Mt. Olympus from Kimta peak

DAY 10 (Three Prunes-North Fork.  11.8 miles.  1013'.  6.5 hours)
The first part of the hike continues the up/down that we had become so familiar with over the past couple of days.  That changes after reaching the Three Lakes basin.  We dropped 3100' in the next five miles to reach the valley floor.  We were looking forward to a dip in Irely Lake for a much-needed cleaning, but it was totally dried up when we got there.  Another mile got us to the car and the trip back to Quinault, where we bought some soap and found pay showers.  Not sure if I've ever had a shower that felt so good.
One of the lakes at Three Lakes
One of the lakes at Three Lakes
Irely Lake.  Where's the water?
Irely Lake.  Where's the water?

From there, we drove to Olympia for our usual post-hike meal of Mexican food/Margaritas.  After that, it was just the late night hassle of road construction on I-90 before we arrived home shortly before midnight.  A great trip with my son!!

Random thoughts/stats...
Dinners each night were provided by Pak-It-Gourmet.  The best freeze dried food I've eaten.  Highly recommended. up.gif
We had fantastic weather the entire trip.  The only time it clouded up was in the early evenings.
Total mileage as stated before, at least according to my GPS...98 miles.  Total elevation gained....25,243'.  Weight loss between both of us...18 pounds (10 for me.  8 for Derek).

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Reach for the sky, cuz tomorrow may never come.

Live the life of love.  Love the life you live.
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ranger rock
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PostFri Aug 29, 2014 12:15 pm 
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Well done.. Did you have trouble getting a spot at Lunch Lake after changing your plans?
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rocknclimb
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PostFri Aug 29, 2014 1:07 pm 
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This was my first hiking trip into the Olympics, but it certainly will not be the last up.gif  The views from the High Divide and Skyline trails made all the miles and elevation gain well worth the effort.  The endless huckleberries and blueberries were an added bonus to an already great trip.  The bear sighting was a big highlight for me smile.gif  climbing up Mt. Seattle was a bit arduous w/ the crappy rock, but I was glad for the summit.  Thanks dad for a putting together the trip!
Looking back at Sol Duc Park
Looking back at Sol Duc Park
Dad on the High Divide
Dad on the High Divide
Mt. Carrie to Mt Tom
Mt. Carrie to Mt Tom
Lunch Lake
Lunch Lake
Black tailed deer
Black tailed deer
Round & Lunch Lakes
Round & Lunch Lakes
Real cool tree
Real cool tree
Heading down from the High Divide
Heading down from the High Divide
Deer Lake
Deer Lake
Lake Quinalt
Lake Quinalt
Let the fun begin
Let the fun begin
Nice setup for hanging food at Low Divide
Nice setup for hanging food at Low Divide
Dad crossing the N.F. Quinalt
Dad crossing the N.F. Quinalt
Spider
Spider
Martin Park
Martin Park
Mt. Seattle to the Elwha snowfinger
Mt. Seattle to the Elwha snowfinger
Lower Martin Lake
Lower Martin Lake
Dad heading up Mt. Seattle
Dad heading up Mt. Seattle
Crap rock
Crap rock
Crap Gully
1 label
Crap Gully
Mt. Christie
Mt. Christie
Noyes, Olympus, and Meany
Noyes, Olympus, and Meany
Route to the summit
Route to the summit
Mt. Seattle summit
Mt. Seattle summit
Mt. Noyes
Mt. Noyes
Lake Beauty
Lake Beauty
Sunset over Lake Beauty
Sunset over Lake Beauty
Sunrise on Mt. Olympus
Sunrise on Mt. Olympus
Dad on the Skyline
Dad on the Skyline
Looking back at Mt. Seattle
Looking back at Mt. Seattle
Olympus from the south
Olympus from the south
Olympus et al
Olympus et al
Black bear
Black bear
Nearing the finish
Nearing the finish
Dry Lake Irely
Dry Lake Irely
Paintbrush
Paintbrush
Lupine
Lupine
Tons of berries
Tons of berries

Another great time in the mountains!!!

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When asked "Why do you climb"?  Simply respond "Why don't you"?
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Ski
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PostFri Aug 29, 2014 1:23 pm 
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excellent. well done, gentlemen. up.gif

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"I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. 
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Voxxjin
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made of hamburger
PostFri Aug 29, 2014 3:19 pm 
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nice job. I am envious.

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Cry 'Havoc!' and let slip the dogs of war
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RodF
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PostFri Aug 29, 2014 4:05 pm 
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Thanks for sharing your photos!

p.s. hey Bobbi, sensible people do do it counter-counter-counter-clockwise!  plus Mt Seattle and Martin's Park!

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"of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt" - John Muir
"the wild is not the opposite of cultivated.  It is the opposite of the captivated” - Vandana Shiva
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bobbi
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PostFri Aug 29, 2014 4:30 pm 
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OMG...that's epic+++ up.gif

borank.gif  borank.gif  borank.gif 

i wanted to hike to Martin's Park but ... F troop had enough of that 4-letter word embarassedlaugh.gif

F troop, hhhhmmmm, i'm probably the only climber so climbing Mt. Seattle was out of the question.  would have loved to climb it.

do i want to go back just to do Mt. Seattle and Martin's Park.  nope shakehead.gif

too many other places to go tongue.gif

oh, i am more than envious about your bear sightings! curse.gif

great job....totally cool cool.gif

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bobbi ૐ

"Today is your day!  Your mountain is waiting.  So…get on your way!" - Oh, the Places You’ll Go! By Dr. Seuss
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mtn.climber
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PostFri Aug 29, 2014 4:37 pm 
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Ranger Rock wrote:
Well done.. Did you have trouble getting a spot at Lunch Lake after changing your plans?

We stopped at the ranger station in the basin twice to ask permission for a site, but he never appeared that night.  Turns out it wasn't an issue.  There were a couple of young women that offered to share their site with us since we both had small tents.  Plus, there were still plenty of empty sites.

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Ancient Ambler
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PostTue Sep 02, 2014 6:44 am 
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Great trip, TR and photos.  I especially enjoyed your shot entitled "More views from Mt. Seattle", showing a bit of upper Seattle Basin and most of the route from there over to Mount Meany.
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steppinrazor
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PostTue Sep 02, 2014 3:53 pm 
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Ran in to you between Irely and Three lakes on my Sklyline trip.  Now I know why y'all looked so tired!
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Forum Index > Trip Reports > Olympics hike.  10 days.  100 miles.
  Happy Birthday JPH, straydog!
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