The Olympic Mountains are famous for catching the full fury of the winter Pacific storms. In fact, the road from Port Angeles into the heart of the range is called Hurricane Ridge Road.
They are also excellent, however, at catching the last golden rays of an autumn sunset. The air then is soft, full of ocean smells and moisture, but not the stormy froth that will soon descend on the peaks.
The mountains have made it through the melt season with much of their snow cover intact. The glaciers on the flanks of Mount Olympus have fed the Hoh and the Elwha rivers all summer and are ready to be re-nourished by the winter storms.
The mountains themselves are geologic wonders. They are the result of giant tectonic forces inexorably pushing the disappearing Farallon oceanic plate into a confined triangle, where the plate crumples upward instead of diving down. Because of this giant vice-like action, they are the highest of the coastal range of mountains that extend all the way to southern California. They are also the snowiest and perhaps, on days like this, the prettiest.
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