Michael Totten

Postcards from the Pacific Northwest

Shelly and I spent a long weekend on the Olympic Penninsula – three hours north of Portland and three hours west of Seattle – because two friends of ours got married there Saturday. It would be hard to find a more beautiful place.

Lake Crescent.jpg
Lake Crescent is surrounded on all sides by mountains.

Lake Crescent Lodge.jpg
The Lake Crescent Lodge likes to brag about the famous people who stay there. Laura Bush has apparently been there many times – without George W. for whatever reason. Franklin Roosevelt once stayed in one of the cabins. What he had for breakfast – rainbow trout and scrambled eggs – is still on the menu as the “Roosevelt Breakfast.”

Clear Water.jpg
The water is deep and, as you can see, clear.

Hurricane Ridge.jpg
Hurricane Ridge rises a mile above the Strait of Juan de Fuca and overlooks the entire interior of the Olympic Penninsula. The microclimate is arctic, the ecosystem is sub-alpine tundra, and the ridge gets its name from the hurricane-force winds that blow in the winter. It is not a place you want to visit in January.

Olympic Penninsula Valleys.jpg
This is what almost all the penninsula looks like – snow capped peaks above steep glacier-carved valleys.

Believe it or not I snapped this photo on the dry side, in the rain shadow. The Pacific side, the rainforest side, is something else. Greener than you can imagine. I would post a photo, but I didn’t make it over that far on this trip.

Michael and Shelly Lake Crescent.jpg
Shelly and me at the lake on our friend’s wedding day.