Olympic Mountains, WA

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McGregorUS
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Joined: 2009-12-18
Olympic Mountains, WA

For me these are one of the mountain groups that are great to get to for even two or three days. In reach of Seattle the mountains have some great endemics - some you know - such as Campanula piperi and some such as Viola flettii which are very pretty but I hadn't come across at all.

These pics are of Ruby Beach on the Pacific coast with the mass of driftwood on the beach, of the cold rainforest at Hoh Valley and of the endemic Olympic marmot (Marmota olympus if you can believe it) near Hurricane Ridge.

I'll post some plant pics in a follow-up.

McGregorUS
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Joined: 2009-12-18

HURRICANE RIDGE

At the end of the road into the heart of the Olympics. Wonderful array of plants on solid rock and loose scree slopes.

Two plants from here - Elmera racemosa is like a Heuchera but with small feathery petals sticky out from the basic cup of the calyx. This isn't confined to the Olympics also being found in the Cascades, but the other is very much confined to the Olympics - Viola flettii is very pretty but also distinctive with the flower often wider than it is tall - a beautiful endemic.

Malcolm McGregor
Global Moderator/NARGS Editor
East Yorkshire, UK

McGregorUS
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ANOTHER GREAT PLACE in the OLYMPICS

A great walk - if you like that kind of thing is the Switchback Trail up to Klahhane Ridge where we were looking for Micranthes (Saxifraga) tischii - very rare and very confined. The picture shows a view from high up near the Ridge looking back - the trail starts down by the road! On the ridge itself there are some beautiful plants. Not everything is rare but still this Erigeron compositus was just perfect.

Delpinium glareosum was growing on the bare earth slopes by the trail - Rockslide delphinium or Olympic delphinium (I'm using Phyllis Gustafson's book which is ideal - lots of pictures etc).

Other nice plants up here included Viola flettii, Douglasia leavigata, and Phacelia sericea.

Malcolm McGregor
Global Moderator/NARGS Editor
East Yorkshire, UK

McGregorUS
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ONE LAST PLANT

Never neglect roadsides - that beautiful endemic Campanulka piperi is growing on bare rock exposures by the side of the road - almost my perfect image of a rock garden plant - pretty, growing on bare rock and possible to grow!

And then if you are really lucky with the conditions on the ferry back to Seattle you might get views like this of Seattle with Mount Rainier in the distance.

I was there from 14-16 July - only thing to say is try and avoid the annual Lavender Festival (which was running when we visited) because suddenly accommodation is at a premium.

Malcolm McGregor
Global Moderator/NARGS Editor
East Yorkshire, UK

Booker
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Joined: 2010-01-30

Stunning images of a beautiful and very tempting area, Malcolm.  Many thanks for posting.

Cliff Booker A.K.A. Ranunculus
On the moors in Lancashire, U.K.
Usually wet, often windy, sometimes cold ... and that's just me!

Boland
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Title: Member
Joined: 2009-09-25

Yet another place I need to visit.  What spectacular images!

Todd Boland
St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada
Zone 5b
1800 mm precipitation per year

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

McGregor wrote:

Never neglect roadsides...

Most people never get anywhere past the roadsides... but good advice, nonetheless!  ;D  Great pictures!

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

Rimmer
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Title: Guest
Joined: 2010-02-05

McGregor wrote:

HURRICANE RIDGE

At the end of the road into the heart of the Olympics. Wonderful array of plants on solid rock and loose scree slopes.

Malcolm this is the wonderful photo in your Sax book,  i like tyo know how to find this spot

Rimmer

Rimmer de Vries
SE Michigan, USDA Zone 5b

Hoy
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Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-15

Well, I have been to USA twice, but never visited the far west. I certainly have to do that too!

Trond
Rogaland, Norway - with cool, often rainy summers  (29C max) and mild, often rainy winters (180 cm/year)!

Sellars
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Title: Member
Joined: 2009-12-29

Malcolm

Thanks for the observation about Campanula piperi being easy to see from the roadside in the Olympics.  There is a good location between the Hurricane Ridge Visitor Centre and Obstruction Point where there is a white form of Campanula piperi on a cliff right beside the road.

We also saw this other beauty on a volcanic rock spire near the road above Deer Park.

But is it really possible to grow?  

David Sellars
From the Wet Coast of British Columbia, Canada

Feature your favourite hikes at:
www.mountainflora.ca
MountainFlora videos:
http://www.youtube.com/user/MountainFlora

McGregorUS
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Joined: 2009-12-18

I think its a lovely species and the white form is very nice. My father used to grow it and I remember hom having it for a few years. I just think its one of those species that need love and care.

Malcolm McGregor
Global Moderator/NARGS Editor
East Yorkshire, UK

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