Marmot Lake Olympic National Park
In , the total Olympic marmot population was calculated to be only about 2,, but this low number was due to poor data collection. Stay right to remain on the Tubal Cain Trail; the left fork leads into a confusing plot of campsites and on to an historic mining area. These same “yips” are heard when Olympic marmots are play fighting, along with low growls and chattering of teeth. Photo courtesy of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Towering forests grow in Yosemite. Olympic Mountains in Olympic National Park. Photo by Jason Horstman www. There are few parks with such diverse ecosystems and varied geography. Located just two hours outside of Seattle, Olympic is easily accessible, making it a great place for many to connect with the outdoors.
Tidepools are left from retreating waves on the shoreline and are home to hundreds of colorful marine species normally hidden in the ocean.
During low tide, visitors can explore a diverse ecosystem filled with anemones, starfish and other creatures, creating an enchanting underwater world. In the summer, park scientists hike to the tidepools before dawn to work at the lowest tides. Tidepool in Olympic National Park. Photo by National Park Service. Plant life blankets everything — from the tree-top canopy to moss-covered ground. Photo by Adam Jewell www.
Breaching whales make a big splash for park goers. While migrating north to the Bering sea from Mexico, gray whales often feed along the coast of Olympic. The park lies along the whale trail — a series of sites where marine animals can be seen from shore. Kalaloch, Rialto and Shi Shi Beach are prime locations for whale watching during migration seasons in April and May and then again in October and November.
Various whale species can also be spotted feeding at the mouth of the Hoh and Quillayute rivers or the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Photo courtesy of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Nestled in the northern foothills of the Olympic Mountains, Lake Crescent is known for its brilliant blue and exceptionally clear waters.
Lake Crescent in Olympic National Park. Photo by Rodger Podloger www. Fittingly named for their resemblance to bright yellow bananas, banana slugs serve as composters for the park. They are an important factor in the ecosystem since they consume organic debris and vegetation and disperse seeds.
While predominantly yellow, they also range in color from green to brown and can grow up to 10 inches long.
Banana Slug in Olympic National Park. Photo by Sara Griffith www. In Marmot Lake Olympic National Park, two major dams were removed as part of the Elwha River Restoration and thousands of fish returned to the area in an unprecedented river revival. The foot-high Glines Canyons dam and foot-high Elwha dam stood for over a century. Although both dams fueled regional growth, they blocked salmon migration and disrupted the flow of sediment and debris.
Elhwa River in Olympic National Park. Photo by Isabella Chang www. Enjoy the stunning night sky while visiting Hurricane Ridge or coastal beaches. At night, visitors can Glacier National Park To Great Falls Mt a beautiful starry sky free from light pollution.
What might look like a faint cloud could actually be the Milky Way and light from millions of distant stars. On clear nights, visitors can enjoy the thrilling sight of faraway constellations, nebulae and planets with the naked eye.
Additionally, there are various ranger-led programs to Hurricane Ridge during the summer. Dress warmly as night-time temperatures drop to degrees Fahrenheit at high elevations. Ruby Beach in Olympic National Park. Photo by Dan Esarey www. You can adopt a fish in Olympic National Park. The Adopt-A-Fish radio-tracking project began in to track the movement of fish in the Elwha River and better understand salmon restoration after the dam removals.
The program teaches students radio telemetry techniques — methods of tracking and fish migration patterns. Once released, the fish are monitored through stations along the river, by researchers hiking with handheld antennas or from a small airplane with attached antenna. Sockeye Salmon in Olympic National…
Sights to See
Trail Photos. In , the total Olympic marmot population was calculated to be only about 2,, but this low number was due to poor data collection. The relationship between a sexually mature male and female Olympic marmot is polygynous ; males tend to breed with three or four females in each mating season. Photo by Isabella Chang www.