Twas The Night Before Christmas on the Olympic Peninsula

T’was the night before Christmas all along the O.P.

Not a creature was stirring; even the marmots were asleep.

The stocking were hung by the campfire, from Olympia to Neah Bay

In hopes that St Nicholas would soon be on his way;

The hikers were nestled under their blue tarps and tents

While their dreams had visions of glissading and safe descents

With my lady in her North Face mummy bag and I in the same

Trying to stay dry in the forests, world famous for rain

 

When out in the Hoh, there rose such a clatter

I sprang out of my tent, to see what was the matter;

Out to the Elwha, I flew up the ridge like a Hurricane

Looking and searching across the peninsula in the driving rain.

 

The moon broke through the clouds, showing Mount Ellinor

I saw the entire Olympic Peninsula, from rainforest to sea shore

Out of the corner of my eye, above the city of Forks,

I saw a red and white sleigh with eight tiny Rain-deer pulling serious torques

 

With a little driver, dressed in rain gear and a beard full and thick

I knew in that moment, over the Olympic Peninsula, it must be St. Nick

More rapid then the Quinault River, flowing down to the Ocean

He called out names of Rain-Deer, causing quite a commotion,

The Olympics with Mount Olympus peeking on the left.  Image via The Outdoor Society. All Rights Reserved.
The Olympics with Mount Olympus peeking on the left. Image via The Outdoor Society. All Rights Reserved.

Now Olympus! Now Elwha! Now Shi Shi and Dungeness!

On Constance! On Crescent! On Buckhorn and Skokomish!

To the top of the Mountains to the rainforest trees

We must visit everyone that understand the Olympic Beauty

 

As the sleigh got nearer, the winds blew the cedars and firs

The trees were too thick, I could see nothing but blurs

Until above my tent, the Rain-Deer finally flew

With a sleigh full of gear and St Nicholas too!

 

Then the sleigh set down on the nearby snow shelter roof

I heard the prancing and pawing of each Rain-Deer hoof.

As I peered toward the noise I heard a small hoot

Out of the ferns was St Nicholas, in Gore-Tex boots

 

Dressed in Outdoor Research Gear, from head to toe

He looked like he could handle hiking in rain sun and snow

A multi-day Osprey sack was flung on his back

He looked like he had hiked across Anderson Pass with that pack

 

A shine, deep green, like the forests, came from his eyes

His cheeks were red, like a Hood Canal winter sunrise

His smile was inviting, like the Marymere Falls Trail

And his white beard was the color of a spout from a Gray Whale

 

He held a pipe, burning just cedar, between his teeth

The smoke rose around his head, like a decorated wreath

He had a big broad face and a round little belly,

That shook, when laughed like beached fish of jelly

 

He spoke not a word, but laid out new supplies and gear

Even an Outdoor Society Calendar and a summit book for the New Year

As he finished he came over, and shook my hand

Thanking me for sharing the world’s most beautiful land

 

As he walked away from our camp, he gave a whistle

And the Rain-Deer flew down, scaring a bear from the thistle

As he flew away he looked to me and the following he blessed

“A Merry Christmas to the Olympic Peninsula and the Pacific Northwest”

Fresh snow along the Skokomish River at Staircase Loop Trail in Olympic National Park
Fresh snow along the Skokomish River at Staircase Loop Trail in Olympic National Park

 

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By Doug and Mathias on the Olympic Peninsula, Washington State

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