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Olympic NP vs. Mt. Rainer vs. Columbia River Gorge

Olympic NP vs. Mt. Rainer vs. Columbia River Gorge

Old Jun 26th, 2004, 08:05 PM
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Olympic NP vs. Mt. Rainer vs. Columbia River Gorge

We will be traveling to Seattle the first week of August for a week and are having a hard time deciding what to do. We want to see Olympic National Park, Mt. Rainer, Columbia River Gorge as well as do wine tasting. It seems like this is just too much for one week. Can someone give me some ideas on what to choose? We love to hike.
travel_princess is offline  
Old Jun 26th, 2004, 09:22 PM
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We used to live in the Seattle area and just recently moved back to Oregon...and we love to hike too. So if it were me, I would choose ONP and Mt. Rainier and skip the Gorge. The gorge is nice...but the hikes are short and much too populated in my opinion. I do like to go there...but hiking in WA is my preference. In the Olympics and at Rainier there are so many trails that you can get off the beaten path and really explore.
mms is offline  
Old Jun 26th, 2004, 11:08 PM
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Look again at the answer I gave you a couple of weeks ago. Here's the link:
Gardyloo is offline  
Old Jun 27th, 2004, 05:19 PM
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We, who live in Seattle, spent the weekend at Hood River, Oregon. On a clear day, the drive on Highway 14 from Maryhill to White Salmon has to be one of the most beautiful in the country with Mt. Hood looming over the Columbia River in all its glory. From Hood River the views of Mt. Hood and Mt. Adams (in Washington) are spectacular.

Your trip might include a day of wine tasting in the Yakima Valley (Prosser area) and a night in the Columbia River Gorge.

However, I must agree with mms that ONP and Mt. Rainier provide better opportunities for hiking.

jimshep is offline  
Old Jun 27th, 2004, 07:42 PM
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Any recommendations on lodging in the Gorge area?
travel_princess is offline  
Old Jun 27th, 2004, 08:48 PM
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Check out the current issue of National Geographic. It has a feature on Olympic National Park.
LuccaBrazzi is offline  
Old Jun 28th, 2004, 07:59 AM
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In Hood River the Best Western is right on the river and has river view rooms with balcony for $119 and $139 on weekends (but this is a very busy place and you should reserve soon).

The historic Columbia Gorge Hotel is south of town. The setting and grounds are beautiful, but the rates are $200 and more and rooms have no balconies. Next door to this hotel is the much cheaper Vagabond Lodge at which I have never stayed but which is very popular (www.vagabondlodge.com).

In Stevenson, Washington, is the Dolse Skamania Lodge a conference center that offers up-scale lodging. If you stay there, select the less expensive dining option.
jimshep is offline  
Old Jun 28th, 2004, 08:31 AM
Join Date: Nov 2003
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Olympic NP is lovely and diverse but very spread out. (If you look on a map, you will see that no road runs through it.) Plan on driving several hours a day. We were there the 1st week of August last year. We spent 3 days in the Olympic NP, 2 in Victoria BC and 3 in Seattle. One of the Seattle days was a day trip to Mt. Ranier. We spent a full day hiking - it's unbelievalby beautiful there.

I don't know where you're from, but we're from where it is flat and brown...so we can easily travel 70 mph to get around here. In the scenic portions of Washington, the going is much slower...you can't make very good time on scenic, wind-y roads, esp. if you are following a logging truck, so factor in more drive time than you may be used to.
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