Magazine article Sunset

Port Angeles

Magazine article Sunset

Port Angeles

Article excerpt

Known as a gateway to Olympic National Park, Port Angeles is a stone's throw from 7,000foot peaks and miles of trails. But this historically blue-collar town is more than a hiker's pit stop. (Though the locals-park rangers, shipyard workers, and coast guard pilots among them-tend to rank high on the natureloving scale.) A ferry ride away from British Columbia's Victoria and a leisurely drive to Seattle, downtown beckons with indie bookstores, vintage finds, and fresh seafood. Best of all, the former timber town's Elwha River is flush with salmon, thanks to 2014's dam-removal project (the largest in U.S. history). The fish now run free, much like Port Angeles itself.

8 A.M. Tuck into a hearty egg scramble with hash browns at First Street Haven (360/457-0352), a narrow diner with a long counter and a friendly hometown feeling.

9 A.M. Cruise up 1 7 winding miles to Olympic National Park's Hurricane Ridge (nps.gov/ olym), a spectacular drive lined with memorable vistas. (After Oct 15, the road is only open weekends, so be sure to check conditions first.) From the visitor center at 5,242 feet (get your national park passport stamped!), hike the 1-mile roundtrip High Ridge Trail for views of glacierclad Mt. Olympus and the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

1 P.M. Mountain treks work up an appetite, so head back into town for fish tacos at the casual Next Door Gastropub (nextdoorgastro pub.com). Snag a wooden booth for live music on Sundays, or relax with draft ales and craft cocktails any day of the week. …

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