Hello again!! I’m finally getting caught up on photos from the last few months! Our first adventure of the summer was out to Lake Quinault for J’s 30th birthday in early June. We rented a cabin right on the lake with a bunch of our friends, and it was the most perfect, relaxing weekend! (I should’ve appreciated it more at the time because our summer got crazy right after this! Stay tuned for more updates to come in the next few weeks recapping it all!)
Lake Quinault is on the southern part of the Olympic Peninsula, about three hours from Seattle. It is just outside Olympic National Park and only about 30 minutes from the coast! We’ve never been to this part of the Peninsula before, so we were excited to explore a new area. It did not disappoint!
This was the view from the house we stayed in! Could not have been more perfect.
Happy 30th, J! 🙂
Perfect view of Lake Quinault from the deck.
I’m so thankful that all our friends could come spend the weekend celebrating with us. They’ve all become such great friends in the last two years since I moved to Seattle, and I love having a fun group to hang out with! This was the best photo I could get out of them 🙂
Everyone drove out to the lake on Friday, and we spent the first night just hanging out on the porch enjoying the view and the sunset.
On Saturday morning, a few of us decided to go for a hike in the Quinault Rainforest. Our goal was to leave from the Graves Creek area and do a 3 mile hike through the old growth rainforest to Pony Bridge. However, the road is closed about 2 miles before Graves Creek because of a washout in the road! So we ended up hiking along the road for the two miles (which was still gorgeous!) and only made it about a half mile on the actual trail before deciding to head back and enjoy the lake. It doesn’t look like the road is going to be repaired anytime soon, so if you’re thinking about hiking near Graves Creek, just be aware that there’s an extra two mile walk to get there.
Here’s the beautiful view of the river leading into Lake Quinault.
Hiking along the road 🙂
I cannot get over how green everything was!!
We crossed this bridge a little ways after starting on the actual trail.
I loved this little log bridge too!
So much of Olympic National Park is unreachable by car. There are several 30+ mile backpacking trails that you have to take in order to really get into the rainforest and see the park. I hope that someday we’ll do one of those hikes, but for now this little glimpse was perfect!
On our way back to the cabin, we stopped to see the World’s Largest Sitka Spruce tree!
We arrived back at the cabin about mid-afternoon, and it was an insane 90 degrees out. Luckily we had a lake to jump in to cool off!
The lake was FREEZING, so I didn’t stay in for more than a few seconds, but it did help to cool off! Next we all got our kayaks out and went out on the water for some more relaxing time.
These Advanced Elements inflatable kayaks are one of the best purchases we’ve made since moving out to Seattle! It was a bit of an investment, but we love how easily they fold up and store in a small space (so necessary when you live in an apartment like us!), and we can throw them in the car with us anytime we are heading somewhere with a lake nearby. I can’t recommend them enough if you’re looking for fun watersport activities!
We finished up with a campfire and s’mores – my favorite way to end the day!
We had such a fun time at Lake Quinault, and I can’t wait to go back next summer! On our way home on Sunday, we took the long way North around the Peninsula so that we could see the Washington Coast! Stay tuned for an update soon with our favorite spots!