Some spots in the high country are easier to get to than others. The ones that are easy to get to tend to be crowded. The ones that are harder to get to are … well, harder to get to. The result is that there typically are a lot fewer folks and the impact is less. That also means the trails tend to be rougher … or sometimes look nothing like a trail so much as a track through the meadows. Martin’s Park is one of those … it sits in a remote portion of the Olympic National Park with a minimum of a 16 mile hike to get there (and that’s the short route). There are quite a few folks that hike close to it … it sits near the Low Divide, on one of the main routes for those wishing to traverse the Olympic Park. The crossing now runs just about 50 miles … so those doing the hike tend to not have a lot of extra time for side trips. It’s beautiful country, though.
This is the Slab Camp trail east of Deer Park in Olympic National Park. One of my favorite high country trails … partly because the trail starts at over 5000′ … so you don’t have to lug your camera equipment up all that way.
After two days of hiking with our full packs, we enjoyed a day of hiking with minimal weight. We spent a few hours hiking up the valley into the meadow areas created and maintained by winter avalanche activity. It was late enough in the year that the only flowers were those growing in moist areas along streams … or a few scattered columbine here and there.
The Press Party Point (final image) is our reference to one of the iconic photos from the Press Party Expedition … one of the first (non-native) traverses of the Olympic Mountains back in the 1890’s.