I got to go back to the Pacific Northwest this month, and it was the most amazing experience! I've never been to Washington or Oregon, and it was perfect. It's my goal now to go back there, and hit all the national parks that I didn't get to go to this time around due to time. But here's just a taste of everything we got to do! It was jam packed and full of travel days, but definitely worth it all. =]
We started out our trip in Squamish Canada, where we rented an air bnb and went hiking almost every day. On our first hiking day we hit Garibaldi Lake, which was a round trip of about 13 miles. That one was rough because we weren't acclimated to the altitude at all coming from Florida. Then the next day we went to Stawamus Chief, which was even worse because it was stairs straight up the mountain. At one point the stairs were gone, and it was only a chain to pull yourself up the rocks which was intense. But no matter how awful these hikes were, it was all worth it at the end once you got to the top and saw that view. I would do these hikes again any day just to see those views again.
After we left the Squamish and Whistler area, we headed down to Vancouver to I could attend SIGGRAPH again, which was an amazing time. I met so many great people, and it was definitely a blast!
Once all the partying of SIGGRAPH was over, we took a train to Seattle, and drove over to Olympic National Park. We stayed at a campsite resort there, and then explored from hiking the mountains, to hiking the beaches.
The next stop was Seattle, and Mount Rainier! Mount Rainier had probably the most constant gratification, because it was such a gorgeous view from the beginning to the end. That one was probably my favorite of all the hikes.
After Washington, we drove down to Portland and stayed there for a couple of days. Portland was very cool, and all we ended up doing was brewery tours which was a blast. This trip turned out to be way more fun (and intense) than I had originally thought it would be, but I would go back to any of those hikes in a heart beat!