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One Of The Wildest Places Left in The Lower Forty-Eight States!

Posted by on January 3, 2012

We are at the Olympic Peninsula! It is without a doubt a beautiful area. There are campgrounds by almost every town as well as hotels and resorts.  The peninsula itself is the largest arm of land in western Washington state and lies west across the Puget Sound from Seattle.  The Pacific Ocean is on the east and the Strait of Juan de Fuca is the northern boundary, as well as the boundary between the US and Canada.  Cape Alava, the westernmost point in the contiguous United States, and Camp Flattery, the north westernmost point are on the peninsula.  The Olympic Peninsula was home to many of the last unexplored places in the lower 48.  It was largely unmapped until Arthur Dodwell and Theodore Rixon mapped most of its topography and timber resources between 1898 and 1900.

 

The Olympic Peninsula is home to three temperate rain forests.  Rain forest vegetation is concentrated mostly in the western part of the peninsula, as the interior mountains make a rain shadow effect is areas to the east, resulting in much drier climates in those eastern areas.  The Olympic Peninsula is also home to the Olympic Mountains.  This range is the second largest in Washington State, and its highest peak in Mt. Olympus.

 

There are many salmon-bearing rivers on the Olympic Peninsula and many natural lakes.  There are also numerous state and national parks.  Within the Olympic National Forest, there are five designated wilderness areas and just off the west coast is the Washington Islands Wilderness.  There are major efforts underway to protect the wilderness areas on the Olympic National Peninsula and to protect salmon streams.  In 1988, Congress designated 95% of Olympic National Park as Wilderness.

 

There are so many things to do on the Peninsula.  A good idea would be to check out websites are go to the Olympic National Park Visitor center in Port Angeles.  They have a friendly staff who can help you plan your time in the area to see and do the things that appeal to you the most – with most things within an hours drive  or less from Port Angeles.  They will also be able to direct you to some of the most beautiful camp grounds in the Northwest.  Make sure that where ever you visit is left as beautiful and untouched as when you arrived and this remnant of wild America will continue to be a wonderful place for future generations to visit.

 

Drive safe!

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