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Hesman
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PostMon Oct 07, 2019 7:05 pm 
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I hadn’t been out hiking in the mountains in awhile, so I concluded that I ought to visit the national park that I cherish the most: Olympic National Park. One part of the park I had not visited in awhile was Staircase. For some reason, I was steadfast on hiking the Staircase Rapids Loop, despite the fact that there were longer hiking opportunities in the area on which I could get a lot more exercise. I polished off the entire hike a little over 4 hours. I could have rushed through the entire hike at a much quicker pace, but I spent quite a bit of time pursuing a “perfect” picture. I am not sure if I achieved in finding that “perfect” picture, but a good time was had in trying.

The hike was begun by walking across the fancy bridge to nowhere that crosses the North Fork Skokomish River. I soon noticed that the trail crew had been doing some work to the trail in the first 1/4 of a mile to make the trail ADA accessible. Once the trail became more rough and tumble I came across a trail crew doing some work on the trail to level it out and they were winching a large rock into place to build a small retaining wall.

Along the way to the suspension bridge I found several spots to stop and take a picture or two. The fall colors were just beginning to start: a few ground plants were starting to turn yellow or had already turned yellow. Some of the Big Leaf Maples were beginning to turn yellow, but most had not begun to change color yet. At the suspension bridge, I stopped for awhile to take some pictures and watch the river flow by. After spending time at the bridge, I walked to the North Fork Skokomish trail and hiked up the trail a ways until I reached a spot next to the river to eat an early lunch. After eating my early lunch, I began the walk back to my car. Considering I was taking my sweet time walking down the trail, I was passed by another hiker. He noticed I carrying my tripod and camera in the crook of my arm and asked if I had gotten any good ones yet. I replied that I believed I had taken some good ones.

Some pictures in no particular order:


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You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. - Abraham Lincoln
Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened. - Dr. Seuss
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Ski
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PostMon Oct 07, 2019 7:16 pm 
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great video.

up.gif

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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RAW-dad
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PostTue Oct 08, 2019 5:47 pm 
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As someone who also loves ONP, but lives >6 hours away, I really enjoy these "off season" TRs that you locals post.  Thanks for sharing and keep 'em coming!
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reststep
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PostTue Oct 08, 2019 8:45 pm 
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Thanks for the report.

I guess that bridge now pretty much does go nowhere but at one time there was a resort in that area across the bridge with cabins for rent.  I remember going there when I was a kid. I remember sitting outside one evening and watching a fisherman catch some nice trout out of the river.

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"The mountains are calling and I must go." - John Muir
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Hesman
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PostWed Oct 09, 2019 8:20 am 
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Can’t say I have ever heard about a resort being at Staircase. I found a short description of it on the internet, but no pictures to put it in perspective.

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You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. - Abraham Lincoln
Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened. - Dr. Seuss
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reststep
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PostWed Oct 09, 2019 11:52 am 
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You did better than me.  I have not been able to find anything on the internet about a Staircase Resort.

We may have some old family pictures of the area but the problem is if we do I have no idea where they are.

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"The mountains are calling and I must go." - John Muir
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Hesman
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PostWed Oct 09, 2019 12:13 pm 
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One of the buildings from the resort is still there and that is what I found on the internet. Sounds like it had its ups and downs before it became part of the national park.

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You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. - Abraham Lincoln
Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened. - Dr. Seuss
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kiliki
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PostThu Oct 10, 2019 9:27 pm 
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Staircase Resort was across the river from the Forest Service ranger station and campground--I think it was there by 1930. It was a collection of rustic cabins. It operated until the late 1950s or so.
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reststep
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PostFri Oct 11, 2019 11:11 am 
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When our family stayed at Staircase Resort it was probably in the mid to late 40's.

Do you have or know of any pictures or know if any history of the resort is available?

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kiliki
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PostFri Oct 11, 2019 3:11 pm 
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I don't, but the park might have photos in their archives. The Mason County Historical Society/Museum is another possibility (you could email them and ask--local historical societies often have great photos); US Forest Service records housed at the National Archives in Sand Point could also have something, if a person were very curious and wanted to go digging.

Here's what the ONP Historic Resource Study says about the resort, if you are curious.
https://www.nps.gov/parkhistory/online_books/olym/hrs/chap4.htm

Prior to the inclusion of the Staircase area into Olympic National Park, Staircase Resort was established on the bank of the North Fork Skokomish River. In the mid 1930s Lester and Anna Dickinson operated the resort as well as packed and guided parties into the mountains. During the fifteen year management by the Dickinsons, the complex of buildings at Staircase evolved (NPS OLYM ca. 1968). By the mid 1940s, Staircase Resort consisted of fourteen furnished and unfurnished cabins. At that time cabin rates ranged from $1.50 to $6.25 a day. Meals were not available, but a store at the resort provided staples and milk (UW 1944, n.d.). In the late 1940s, Mr. and Mrs. Paul Danford took over operation of the resort from the Dickinsons. Eleanor Danford continued as proprietor of Staircase Resort into the early 1950s, during which time management and maintenance of the buildings faltered (UW 1950, 5 December). In the late 1950s Staircase Resort ceased operation, and in subsequent years the Park Service removed most of the buildings. In 1983 one Staircase Resort cabin remained and served as quarters for Park Service employees at Staircase Ranger Station.

The citations in that paragraph, creative as they are, do indicate that there's info about the resort in the Preston Macy (OLYM superintendent) collection at UW special collections.
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reststep
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PostFri Oct 11, 2019 3:25 pm 
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That is interesting. Thanks for the information.

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"The mountains are calling and I must go." - John Muir
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Pyrites
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PostFri Oct 11, 2019 4:21 pm 
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Staircase was once upon a time call Lincoln Guard Station, if that helps.

Best.
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Hesman
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PostFri Oct 11, 2019 4:59 pm 
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Interesting stuff so far.

I am surprised that Rod hasn’t chimed in with some history yet.

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You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. - Abraham Lincoln
Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened. - Dr. Seuss
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