Another easy driving day took us through miles of checkerboard forest. One section would be thick with trees; the next would be clear cut looking like the Syrian War had just taken place there. The loggers leave 3 - 4 feet of trunk behind. We're guessing that they leave the stumps and roots to hang onto the soil until a new batch of trees can be grown. There were lots of Weyerhaeuser signs proclaiming their good stewardship of a renewal resource. We need wood for our buildings, chopsticks and paper needs, but the clear cut areas sure were ugly! Then we came to the national forest, which perhaps had never been logged or logged long, long ago. The difference was striking. The trees were so tall, the satellite radio we enjoy while we drive kept cutting in and out, the signal blocked by all that foliage.
When we're not in the woods we enjoy mile after mile of yellow blossoming bushes growing wild. They make this midwesterner think of forsythia, but the leaves and blossoms are not quite right. In the towns the azaleas are blooming with color so bright they hurt our eyes. We've enjoyed azaleas in the southeast, but here the plants are much bigger. Some are as large as our garage and crammed with so many blossoms you can hardly see the leaves. Spectacular!
Towns are few and far between on the Washington Pacific coast. But when you do get to one, you may not see a grocery store or a gas station or a bar or a church, but you will see an espresso drive through with a line of cars waiting for their caffeine fix. Starbucks got its start in Seattle, but all manner of freelance retailers are keeping people awake throughout the state.
We've come to Forks to visit the western side of Olympic National Park. We did not appreciate the significance of this town, the location of the Twilight movies. We've never seen one, but you can get your picture taken with a character at the visitor center and taken location tours. It's all wasted on us.