Goodbye Iconic Tree: Kalaloch Tree Reportedly Loses Battle With Gravity and Erosion

Turns out, all of our sources were also incorrect. The tree is still standing, as of May 2017. Formal apology here:

Feel free to read the following and mock us incessantly. Honest mistake, but this should inspire you to visit the tree, before it does actually fall for good. 

RIP, Kalaloch Tree?

The Kalaloch Tree of Life, often called the Kalaloch Root Cave or that amazing Kalaloch Tree has reportedly lost its battle with gravity over the weekend. According to a source at NWHIKERS.NET, the tree has collapsed. ONP officials have yet to make a statement, but have not denied that the tree has fallen. Calls to the Kalaloch Lodge and Ranger Station have not been returned. If true, this is huge. Hanging on by it roots over a slowly eroding cave along the bluffs of the Pacific Coast, this tree was an inspiration and a tourist destination for millions of visitors to Olympic National Park. We recently wrote about it as part of our Olympic Inspiration series and we are sad to hear of the collapse of the root system. It had to happen at some point, but we, like everyone else, figured it had a few more years.

We all knew the tree would fall, so most who visited the Kalaloch Region made it a point to stop and see it each trip along the coast we took. A few weeks ago, while driving by, I made the stop and took a few pictures, not realizing that this would be the last time my eyes would gaze on to its gravity defying roots. As I took pictures and enjoyed the view, I remember wondering how many more storms the tree could take. Apparently, the answer was only a few more, as the recent weather has taken its toll on the entire PNW. Sadly, iconic trees falling is nothing new for winter in Olympic National Park. In 2014, visitors to Olympic received the news that the Kalaloch Cedar tumbled down, followed up with news in 2016 that the Quinault Cedar had fallen.

The wilderness of Olympic is a hard place to make a life, yet we continue to be drawn to the region for the rugged beauty and stunning scenery. We go to the coast to feel reenergized and inspired with each visit. Rain or shine, winter or summer, the Olympic Coast continues to inspire wanderlust, awe and determination to live the life we feel we deserve. Like the Kalaloch Root Tree did for so many years, we hope to cling on as long as we can, enjoying each moment we have on this planet. We all hope for one more year of life changing sunsets on the most gorgeous stretch of coast in America, hanging on like the Kalaloch Tree did for so long.

After heavy rains and numerous landslides rocked the Pacific Northwest, the cave carved by the constantly running waters around the tree finally took out enough of the land, causing the tree to collapse. Below are is the source for the story with pictures providing a link to the appropriate source.

Via NWHikers.Net

This weekend, Olympic is rumored to have lost one of its iconic destinations. While sad, we must remember that the collapse of this tree and all others is inevitable. The fragility of nature is one that mirrors our own lives, making events like this a sober reminder to not put off a trip or adventure for any reason. You never know if you, or the destination you wish to experience will be around. Keep exploring. Enjoy nature and take a moment to remember the iconic tree that inspired countless visitors to the wilderness coast of Olympic National Park.

To see the remains of the tree: Head to the Kalaloch Campground in Olympic National Park, parking at the largest parking lot. Walk down the stairs to the beach and turn right. The tree is a few hundred feet to the north.




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By Doug and Mathias on the Olympic Peninsula, Washington State

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