I had an amazing weekend filled with fishing, hiking and camping at Lake Ozette this weekend. From my house it’s about 185 miles to get there. It’s located a little South of Neah Bay and is the western most part of the contingent US of A (well, a 3.3 mile hike from the lake campground takes you to that point which we did last time we were there 2 years ago).
Anyway, I left the house between 3:15 and 3:30. Crystal was very helpful in that she stayed up, went grocery shopping, and helped me get all my things together when I woke up at 2. I got to Nate’s house between 4 and 4:15 in the morning and we ate breakfast, grabbed some coffee, loaded up the car, and headed out. With everything packed up we were sitting in a very full Mustang. The sleeping bag and bedding bulged out out around the front seats. It was amusing but also a relief we fit everything into the car.
We stopped and got ice for the chest before the Hood Canal Bridge. It was nice to see the work they did on it widening and changing the way it opened. We passed through Sequim and filled the car with gas and took a 10 minute break. The sun was starting to rise and filled the sky with a beautiful orange hue.
We continued through Port Angeles where we witnessed a sea gull fly into the side of a truck which it seemed quite aware of it’s existence. “Yes, that just happened!” we exclaimed. We took a side trip to the Upper Elwha Dam. I was intrigued by the fact that these dams existed out on the peninsula is such a remote location. Further, Nate informed me they were slated to demolishing them both to restore salmon runs. As a side note it’s funny to see all the pages which spell dams damns.
We drove through Sekiu and made the turn to the lake. We got to the campground to find it was full. We found a spot anyway and decided to use the same one we did last time. It was nice and private. After unpacking and eating lunch cooked over an open fire we decided to take the hike to the coast. We took the lower trail which was said to be easier. We pondered the miles of boardwalk and tried to figure out how it was built. We came to two conclusions. The first and more likely was that helicopters would drop lumber and supplies along the way and the second is that some guy named Herman would spend his entire life walking the lumber to the various locations it was needed.
Anyway, we got to the coast and saw the spectacular view. We climbed to the top of an outcropping, sat down, and smoked our pipes as we watched the waves roar over the rocks. It’s interesting to note that both time’s I’ve been to Lake Ozette there was continual cloud cover with only brief holes into the blue sky.
The walk was easier this time and took us between two and three hours to do. When we got back we had a snack and gathered our fishing gear. We dropped our lines and fished until dark. Only after the sun set were we getting bites. No bait is allowed so it took us some experimentation to figure out what worked best.
Before we left the dock an owl came close by in an attempt to capture my bobber. Then it sat on a pile on a few feet behind me. We name it “Demon Owl”.
Dinner was amazing. Steaks, baked potatoes, and corn. Everything was delicious. I admit I was in charge of the potatoes and I pulled then out 15 or so minutes early but no bother, they were delicious. It was great to eat food cooked over an open fire. As the other campers pulled out their stoves, gas or electric lamps, canned food, etc. we attempted to keep it real. Driving to a spot was cheating enough!
The next morning we got up fairly early. I think it was about 5 when we left for the dock. We saw some jumps and Nate got a couple nibbles early on but as the sun rose we gave up. We saw several ducks and a family of 5 river otters. We returned to the camp site, made a roaring fire, and cooked bacon, eggs, and toast. Delicious.
The drive back was really difficult for me. Nate drove part of the way but I had trouble keeping my eyes open. We stopped for coffee and continued in Port Angeles. Once we got into Poulsbo we called our families. I helped him move a hot tub onto a truck and then it was straight home for me.
My wood smoke allergy was really bad this time around. I didn’t get any on my face so those symptoms on my eyes, brow, and head were fairly benign but my hands and fingers have been covered by hives.
It was a great trip. We didn’t catch anything but we got to see some cool wildlife and got to be part of God’s canvas. The ocean, trees, lake, views, animals; it was all great to enjoy. The complete lack of car sounds, airplanes, and other noise of society were not missed.