Pictures taken from FB of DS's camping trip in 2016. This is for his album. He did the journaling.
Page 1 journal: My first stop on the way to Shi Shi Beach was at the Rangers' Station in Port Angeles for an overnight permit and a bear canister. I took off from there and later than I expected, I arrived in Neah Bay. The roads were narrow, windy and slow going. Once at Neah Bay, another permit was needed from the Makah Indians. So I bought one from the general store and received some directions from the locals. Eventually, I arrived at a trailer on a few acres. There were about 10 cars lined up and parked neatly on the lawn, and at the end sat a station with envelopes and a drop box. Here was where I was to pay for parking. People do this because cars at the trailhead get robbed and vandalized. After parking and paying I repacked my brand new back pack using the bear canister, putting food and anything with a smell into the canister. Once completed, I set off for the trailhead which was about 1.25 miles south. The first part of the trail was dry and in a forest which quickly opened up to smaller bushier trees and mud. For the start of this section there was a wood planked boardwalk to stay off the mud. Eventually it appears whoever built the boardwalk ran out of money or desire to complete the whole trail and so I was soon traipsing through mud puddles. Despite there not being any rain in a week the trail was incredibly muddy and the weather muggy in this small treed section. The trail continued flat and level and brought me closer and closer to the sea. I could hear it before I could see it. When I could finally see the ocean it was filtered between some trees. Eventually there were openings big enough to step off the trail and look out but when I did I realized I was a couple hundred feet up on a cliff. I hugged the forested cliff line for a few more miles, when I came to a sign. The sign stated that the trail was to continue down a steep grade using ropes. This was the cliff from earlier but now with ropes tied between trees. I, with a full pack and no gloves, took a second to understand what was being asked of me. Using my eyes to traverse the couple hundred feet I saw a few gaps between the ropes that I would need to be careful but overall I just needed to hold onto the rope. Wearing my 40 to 50lb pack I started down the incline. Grabbing rope after rope and using the trees below me to block any sliding that may happen I finally came to the bottom. After descending via ropes I was still in a forested area but could hear the beach. I kept walking the path past a couple primitive make shift camp sites that were still slightly forested. I wanted to make camp on the beach so kept going - getting peek a boo views of the beach. Finally breaking out of the trees, I found myself on Shi Shi beach! Four miles of sand lay in front of me; waves crashing over rocks on the North side, sand in the middle and Point of Arches rising from sea to the South.
Page 2 journal: Once I arrived on the beach I needed to find a safe place to make camp. For the highest tide of the year was set to crest at 00:30. I decided to keep heading south. About a mile on I found a log on what was now a sandy beach and decided this was a good place to stop and make camp. I found a place far enough back and with a large log by to act as my table. So I set up my new tent. Stakes were hard to keep in the sand but once stuff was loaded in it stayed down.
I wanted to get set up as sunset looked to be coming, and since this was my first backpacking trip in awhile; I wanted to be set up before darkness came. What I didn't expect was for some part of the sun or its rays to be visible up past 11pm! After setting up and getting a freeze dried meal inside me, I started to explore. I went down to the beach to dip my toes in…man was that cold! I gathered dried driftwood and other offerings from the sea that looked to be flammable. I built a small fire below the tide line so as to be consumed by the waves once they came to reclaim the beach. The fire burned quickly as everything I could find was so dry and light. I spent more time searching for wood than sitting by the fire.
At one point I found a piece that burned long enough to explore more of the tide lands and in doing so lead me into the water at sunset. In some fit of crazy and in the order of a pagan-like ceremony, I jumped the fire and ran as fast as I could into the waiting frigid Pacific, getting chest deep before I could gather myself, gasping for air and laughing all at the same time. I made my way back to the fire and my towel to warm up. I changed into long johns and a long sleeve shirt as the temp started to drop. I gathered more wood and sat by the fire watching the tide come in. There is little in this life as calming as the sound of waves on a sandy beach.
Throughout the time I sat by the fire a few sets of people came hiking down the beach to set up camp. I greeted them and got back to staying warm. I eventually retreated to my tent at roughly 11 with still a sliver of light coming through the Northwest sky and the sea within feet of my fire. Now I was between the sleeping bags at the time and had just brought a bed roll which proved to be a little bulky in the pack and not quite warm enough as I hadn't planned for the beach to be that cold in summer. It would prove to be a restless night. At times because of being cold and other times because the waves sounded so close. Sometime around 12:30 when the tide was to crest, I looked outside my tent to see the 40 to 50 feet of beach that was there disappear to about 10 feet! I stayed awake ‘till I knew it had crested and I was safe.
All old stash - Echo Park pps, Karen Foster stickers, brads - Making Memories
Journaling challenge Cat # 2
Sports and Play