An Iconic Chalet in the Olympic National Park Will Soon be Washed Away
OFFICIAL NATIONAL PARK PRESS RELEASE: http://www.nps.gov/olym/parknews/enchanted-valley-chalet-march-2014.htm
Built in 1930 and 1931, the Enchanted Valley Chalet has stood on the banks of the mighty Quinault River, adding a level of awesomeness not seen in the Olympic National Park. While other shelters remain all around the region, the Enchanted Valley Chalet is one of the iconic images of the most awesome spot in this gorgeous valley.
The 2 ½ story chalet, located right along the river has an incredibly rich history. From being used as a hangout for early hikers to being a WWII aircraft lookout station, the chalet stands in a beautiful valley with waterfalls pouring down steeps slopes all around. Active with bears, deer, elk and hikers, the chalet is one of the most iconic images of backpacking trips in the region. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2007, and soon it will be washed into the Quinault River.
The Chalet, located on the banks of the Quinault, has been slowly getting more and more at risk each year. What started as a few hundred feet of a buffer between the river has now shrunk to less than two feet. With the rushing waters of the river carving out the banks, the chalet’s foundation is now just 18 inches away from the river. That means that as of right now, the chalet could get swept downstream at any moment.
It will be a sad day when the chalet is no more, and hikers and backpackers everywhere should hold on to their memories of this awesome house in the middle of the most amazing waterfall valley in the country. The Chalet was the last stop in my first ever backpacking trip, wrapping up the best week of my life. back in the 1990’s, I fell in love with nature because of the chalet and the Enchanted Valley. I was hoping to take my children there someday, but it appears as if the forces of nature will destroy it before I get the chance. The valley will eventually return to being a valley with no chalet, and part of me is sad about this. I know I will pay my respects when I can, and I encourage all of you to do the same.
LINKS ABOUT THE ENCHANTED VALLEY CHALET:
Most Recent Pictures: http://cascadeclimbers.com/forum/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=1118789
Good Bye, Old Friend…
ENCHANTED VALLEY HIKING INFORMATION
Distance:28 Miles Roundtrip
Elevation Gain: 2500 Feet
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