Category: Adventure

Unexpected Snow Troubles

Today Mercedes and I took off to the Olympics again. We originally planned to hit up NF-2350 where it goes past Murmat Falls, but there was dark rain clouds that showed up as we got there. The route I was going to travel would have put us right in the middle of the clouds.
Change of plans. About 7 miles down the road was the road to Hamma Hamma Falls. It is a basic drive past Lena Lake Hiking staging area, but we didn’t expect snow to still be on the road.
There were tracks through the snow and then all of a sudden it stopped. I thought “I’m in a 4runner now, I got this”…. 20 ft forward I began to slip and slide. I put it in reverse and pulled off. Mercedes and I jumped out… onto hard packed ice/snow. Maybe that is why I wasn’t getting any traction at all. Even the 4 runner wasn’t digging through the snow. It was just sitting on top of it.
We played for a little bit and then I launched the drone. I love the Hamma Hamma river. So many smaller “waterfalls” and rapids. The mountains around us were blanketed in clouds and you could see some snow on the top of them. It was a surreal moment just taking it all in.
Turning around, I knew there was a few muddy roads that has small campgrounds in them. I wanted to see where a good place to camp out one night would be so we went and explored. There were a few mud puddles, but nothing special. Luckily there wasn’t many limbs or pokey things inside of the puddles we couldn’t see.
The camp site that we showed up to was next to a dry river bed. The river bed must only be for when the Hamma Hamma is really flowing. We walked up it to the Hamma Hamma river. It was clear as can be. It had a hue of blue to it. Ice cold too. Mercedes put one paw in and said “nah fam”
We walked back and headed home after some extra photos. She snored the entire way home. I did pick her up a new camp site sleeping/laying pad from Carhart. She stayed on it the entire ride. Glad she loves it.
Lessons learned today. I need new tires. Old snow/ice can make for slippery and dangerous situations. Even if it is nice and sunny in Tacoma, the weather conditions could change at any moment in the mountains (knew this one, but man didn’t expect it that much).

Adventure in my new 4runner

Mercedes and I traveled out to the Olympic National Forest and NF-23. Heading there it was pouring down rain. In Skokomish, there was several places where water was over the roadway, but was easy to get around.
Once we started to go up NF-23 it cleared up. There was barely anyone out past Vance Creek Bridge. When I did this in the Crosstrek I worried about every little bump, but now in the 4runner it makes light work of the bumps.
Past Spider Lake we started to get some snow on the side of the road. It wasn’t until we started going up a bit that we ran into very minimal snow/ice on the national forest road.
When we got to the clearing we stayed there for a bit to watch the clouds pass through the mountains. That has to be one of my favorite parts about the Olympics.
We made it to my favorite camp spot and it was a mess. There was beer cans and trash all over. I took some time to clean it up before setting up my own fire. The people before left a bunch of wood there too, but it was all soaked from all the rain we have been having. They were kind enough to even leave the plastic it came in -.- ….
The fire picked up pretty fast sine the wood I had was really dry. Today on the menu was Sirloin burgers. One for me and one for Mercedes. Chopped up the onions and mushrooms and tossed it in the cast iron with some butter. I let it simmer for about 5 minutes before putting in the burgers. After the burgers were done I put the sourdough bread in the pan to soak up some of the juices, then toasted it over the fire. My goodness, what a tasty burger. Mercedes scarfed hers down.
We (I… she jumped in the car and watched lol) cleaned up and headed out. She really likes the windows in the 4runner. She can look out with out having to jump on the door handle. We made it home in one piece and she is now racked out snoring next to the computer. Day 3 of owning the 4runner and I am completely infatuated.