Lake Crescent, Olympic National Park, WA

Lake CrescentAugust 29-31, 2012

Lake Crescent is the largest lake in the Olympic National Park (map). Highway 101 runs along the length of it, with beautiful views along the way.

We camped at the Log Cabin Resort on the northeast end. It's a casual, family place that has small cabins and "chalets" along with a campground.

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Log Cabin Resort Campground

When we arrived on Wednesday, the best site (right on the lake) had been taken, but the main open area was empty. With sites as close together as slots in a drive-in movie, we took our chances and set up on the one closest to the lake.

We hoped that people wouldn't camp too near, but we discovered that this campground was the friendliest place we've ever stayed - from the older couple helping us choose a site to the single dad loaning us silicone to the lesbian couple from SF stopping by for a visit.



It was still somewhat cloudy and cool on Thursday morning, so we drove to Sol Duc Hot Springs and soaked in the steaming pools (as long as we could stand the sulfer smell). Then we hiked a mile or so to the Sol Duc waterfall, which was very beautiful. (Luckily it was cool enough for Bailey to stay in the car, because dogs aren't allowed on national park trails.)

When we got back to the campground, we met our new neighbors -- Aly, her two kids, her in-laws, and their lab -- who were literally six feet from our teardrop. But our initial dismay was melted by their friendliness and the bottle of wine they offered. (The father-in-law is a winemaker.) Before long, we were visiting like old friends.

That afternoon, we got the canoe out on the lake. It was getting even cloudier, but it wasn't cold, and the lake was so beautiful and quiet. We were the only ones out. Lake Crescent Lodge



For dinner that night, we decided to splurge on a fancy meal out at nearby Lake Crescent Lodge. This is a beautifully picturesque historic lodge on the lake. Much nicer than Log Cabin Resort, but it doesn't have camping. Nor does it allow dogs. So once again, Bailey napped in the car.

By Thursday night, the campground was filling up fast, and it was good timing to get out on Friday before Labor Day Weekend -- no matter how friendly the crowd.


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