Much of the Olympics remained unexplored until the early part of the 20th century. Many summits and off piste routes were pioneered by ambitious Boy Scouts and "Hikemasters" (i.e., trek leaders) walking out of Camp Parsons, situated between the deltas of the Quilcene and Dosewallips rivers.
In 1987 I would join the Camp Parsons Staff, and within a few years would carry the Hikemaster moniker with a later generation of Boy Scouts keen on exploring the range's glaciers, slide alder, and talus.
In 1990 I'd start dating the Camp Director's daughter, a fellow staffer. She ran the trading post, had a perm, and seemed strangely attractive ... in a Boy Scout uniform.
In 1991 Stephanie and I would embark on our second Olympic mountain hike together - a trip up the Quinault River valley to Mount Anderson and the iconic (and now-endangered) Enchanted Valley Chalet. A little over a year later, we'd marry.
In 1998, our first son, Chase, was born. In 2004, he'd join Scouting. In 2011, he'd visit Camp Parsons for the first time. In 2013, he too, would explore the Olympics with some of his pals as part of the Camp Parsons high adventure program, and follow in the footsteps of Boy Scouts from Parsons who have been walking the Olympics for more than 90 years.
In late June of 2013, we'd take a group of Scouts from Bozeman, Montana to a trailhead near Forks, Washington, and begin a trek through the Olympic rainforest. This photo essay presents a few highlights from the trek and hopefully, captures the spirit of Scouting, and the Olympics, in an inspiring way.
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