I know it’s not officially Fall yet, but this weekend it finally began to feel as if it is on its way! the Pacific Northwest has had an utterly gorgeous, yes, but uncharacteristically warm and long summer. And as a Florida girl who moved to the Northwest hoping to never experience 90+ degrees again, I am more than ready to welcome my favorite season!
When we were in this area two years ago, we loved being so close to Olympic National Park, but since we were closer to the coast then, we explored more along the West side of the park, never making into the Hood Canal side. It was a cloudy and foggy morning, but that just added to the beauty of our Saturday hike. The Olympics, to me, feel the most “Northwest” of all the parks in these states. You get a little taste of everything– big mountains, crystal clear streams, giant ferns and moss covered trees.
This little hike was so beautiful, I felt like I was grinning the entire time. While the long, arduous hikes usually reward us with panoramic views, sometimes these quiet woodsy hikes are just as nice. It’s on these traipsing-through-the-woods hikes that we really talk and connect and check in with each other. ( I’m usually too out of breath on the more strenuous hikes to do much chatting! )
At one point, we sat quietly on a felled tree along the riverbank, just soaking in the smells and sounds so different from what we’d been experiencing recently. We agreed that although we both felt some sadness that Seattle didn’t work out for us, our decision was right. We need quiet. We crave peace and wildness and beauty. And while you certainly catch more glimpses of such in Seattle than perhaps other cities, we knew we would long for more than glimpses.
We talked about how much we loved the landscape in this region– this perfect mix of mountains and rainforest, how much good stuff is such an easy distance away– a short drive and we’re at the Pacific, in Seattle, in Oregon wine country, in Portland, at Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helens, even the drier, more desert-y Eastern Washington, if the rain ever gets to be too much. We reflected on how funny it would be if we were to end up settling in the first Northwest place we came to together. We’re still not sure what the future holds, but the Olympic Peninsula is still on our list of possibilities. 😉
The rain held off and gave us a perfect day on Saturday, while Sunday was a more typically Northwest Fall-ish sort of day. Quiet, sporadic drizzly rain made for the perfect day for a day at home, Mr. F in the kitchen and I on my laptop catching up on blogs and watching a lovely, autumnal movie.
We have so much to look forward to, so many trips to take and plans to make and dreams to nurture. In many ways, it feels like this Fall is a new beginning. I can’t wait to see what else is in store!
First three images by Artsy Forager, last image foundhere.