Published on 24 August 2023 at 05:55

We launched our 101 Road Trip with an unforgettable night attending the Taylor Swift concert at the Lumen Stadium in Seattle. Our plan was to take two days to drive through Washington, ending just across the border in Astoria, Oregon.

The Northern most portion of the 101 runs through the Olympic National Park - which was the main focus of many of our stops on day one. The park has some spectacular scenery and I highly recommend a hike along Hurricane Ridge (about a 45 minute drive from Port Angeles - a good lunch stop), a swim in Lake Crescent, a sunset walk along Rialto Beach, and an early morning meander through the Hoh Rain Forest. 

The Seattle area is not renowned for its high rainfall for nothing! Although we visited in midsummer, it poured with rain for most of our visit. We had initially planned to car camp, but with the weather being so miserable, ended up booking a room in Forks at the Olympic Suites Inn (the only motel with availability). Forks is an quirky little town (deserving of its own blog), and makes for a great base, as it puts you near Rialto Beach and the Hoh Rain Forest, allowing you to strategically plan your visits so as to avoid the crowds.

While uncomfortable for camping, in many ways the rain only increased our enjoyment of our trip as we swam in solitary splendor in Crescent Lake,  walked on a disserted Rialto Beach, and explored the dripping eaves of the Rain Forest among scattered groups of walkers - an unheard of bonus in the height of summer when crowds are the norm. And of course, as a Twihard, visiting all of the sights in Forks that inspired Stephenie Myer's Twilight series, "under an almost constant cloud cover," and pouring rain, seemed fitting. 

Besides the National Park this portion of the 101 has some lovely wild beaches to explore and small towns where you can stop for coffee, or to wander around and browse the quaint stores. There are also a number of state parks that deserve a stop, including Cape Disappointment and the Lewis and Clarke State Park.

Astoria is the gateway to Oregon and offers a good selection of restaurants and shops. After a delicious dinner at Curry & CoCo Thai Eatery, we headed over to Indian Beach, an absolutely gorgeous spot to enjoy a sunset swim.  With the rain having cleared up as we moved South, we were able to car camp at Cannon Beach RV Resort, the perfect spot for launching our Oregon adventure. What an amazing end to an amazing day!

Hurricane Ridge, Rialto Beach, Hoh Rainforest, Boomtown Records-Aberdeen, Cape Disappointment, Indian Beach


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