This week has been full of good news from Olympic National Park and it keeps on coming! On Friday, April 5th, 2019, Olympic National Park officials announced that the scenic Spruce Railroad Trail is once again open. This dog and bike-friendly trail should be added to your list of Olympic destinations!
Fresh from her second attempt at the Barkley Marathons Maggie Guterl sits down to share her personal story of preparation, disappointment and passion. Get an inside look at what it takes to sign up, train, show up and compete in this unique race. Thousands of people follow online each year, but only a handful have what it takes to run past that infamous yellow gate.
The last town before entering a National Park, known as a gateway community, is always interesting. Some parks have incredible towns full of amenities and attractions on the outskirts of their protected lands. Others seem to have little more than a gas station and a few curious locals eyeballing every car that drives toward the pristine wilderness.
Great news from Olympic National Park, this time from one of the most scenic places the park has to offer. In a park known for being spoiled with beauty, thanks to stunning rainforests, wild rivers and rugged coastlines, another gorgeous destination is open to you whenever you want to visit it. The snow is melting and warmth is returning. The ridge is open.
Insects bug people. We all have had experiences on public lands where horseflies kept biting us, mosquitoes tried to drain us of every drop of blood and yellow jackets harasses and stung us. We come back dejected, itchy and sometimes swollen. I agree- days when bugs are bad can be awful. However, sometimes an encounter with an insect is the opposite, giving a day full of intrigue and wonder. For me, once such encounter occurred in Montana’s Paradise Valley.
Lots on the agenda in this week’s episode. It’s Barkley Weekend, ITRA voting is kicking off, runners run #everysinglestreet in their city all over the world. Training schedules are pondered and routes are schemed. Oh, and there’s a race you should sign up for: Little Backyard Adventure.
Good news for those who love the Hood Canal side of Olympic National Park! The road to Staircase will soon be repaired and open! During construction, the road will be closed to all traffic, including those on foot. The Shady Lane Trail is still open and accessible.
Closed during the snowy, winter months, the Sol Duc region of Olympic reopens during the spring months, allowing the masses to rediscover the beauty found along this majestic river. On March 23rd, 2019, Sol Duc Hot Springs Road reopened to vehicles, giving every access to this incredible region. While many trails still have snow, you can once again hike the falls and explore this pretty corner of Olympic National Park.
The pressure builds in your head, your ears feel tight, the air gets thinner; these are the signs that you are gaining elevation quickly. Increasing, the only relief is a hard swallow or blowing your nose, “popping” your ears and releasing the pressure. This feeling is one of my first memories. I was four years years old, flying back from California and I was crying. The elevation gain was too much for my tiny head to deal with and was incredibly uncomfortable. I had my favorite stuffed animal clutched to me tightly as my parents and the flight attendant tried to reassure me that it would be alright. I was given a drink and some peanuts and the pressure was released. For years, I loathed this experience. Now, it is a sign that great adventures will soon be had.
Huge announcement, folks! Your Singletrack crew is directing a trail race. Right here in Olympia. Come join us August 10th at LBA Park for a Little Backyard Adventure.
Mathias also announces his candidacy for US representative for the International Trailrunning Association.
And Douglas reviews the Tigertail foam roller and muscle care tool. Listen up, you could win one!
We can “bearly” contain our happiness with this news! The first official grizzly bear sighting of 2019 has occurred in Yellowstone National Park! Despite a ton of snow and ridiculously frigid temperatures, the inevitable return to warmer weather is showing signs of occurring. We are a ways from wildflowers and open roads, but the bears are “waking up.”
Over the warmer months this year, I completed some incredibly fun projects on trails in mountains I love dearly. I climbed Mt. St. Helens, ran up to Camp Muir, raced the Broken Arrow Skyrace at Lake Tahoe and completed a double peak project running up Mt. Rose and Mt. Ellinor in one run. I’m a mountain runner.
Running, especially on trails and up mountains, is what gives me life. This activity, this hobby, this passion, inspires me to be the best human I can be. In recent years, this life has given me a health body and a strong mind. Discovering running a few years ago has completely changed my life, all for the better.
Your hosts shares their epic aid station adventure at the Mountain Marathon & Hillbilly Half last weekend. Mathias announces his new book: ‘Adventure Running – Exploring Olympia’s Trails’ – Pre-order it today!
And they conclude with a deep dive into some some of the gear they’ve been testing over the last few weeks.
It was the 1980s and I was a little kid when I first heard about Native Americans in Yellowstone National Park. I was told, by a ranger at a visitor center that Native Americans didn’t live in or even visit the lands within the boundaries of the park. I was told they were scared of the unexplainable and the area was avoided. I was told lies.
Looking at visitation stats is nothing new for me. For the past decade, I have been analyzing trends and looking at visitation statistics to National Parks. My focus has always been on Olympic, as I grew up and reside next to the Park’s boundaries. I started researching visitation statistics for Olympic in 2010. It was then that I learned Olympic has consistently been one of the most-visited National Parks in America since 1979. In the last 39 years, it has never dropped out of the top 10, but that may soon change.