National Geographic : 1974 Feb
I COULD HEAR THE SURF, taste the salt, smell the pungency of seaweed and iodine even before we broke out of huckleberry thickets to stand on the edge of the bluff overlooking the Pacific. We scrambled down the steep bank and stepped out onto a long, wide strand, utterly deserted except for sandpipers that ran along the water's edge and gulls that wheeled screaming overhead. Roger Allin, Superintendent of Olympic National Park in north western Washington, looked around him with an almost fierce joy. "If you have never believed in a Creator before," he said to me, "just look around you now!" And indeed this wilderness beach seemed to have been freshly minted by the hand of God. We hiked to the south, along five and a half miles of that spume sprayed shore. Most of the way we crunched over gravel, boulder hopped, or teetered along driftwood logs that had washed up in huge rafts. At one point we had to hurry around a headland to avoid being trapped by the incoming tide-a predicament that has cost Forever riding at anchor, a flotilla of sea stacks-ghosts of former headlands sawed apart by the surf-stands guard where the green thumb of Washington (opposite) juts into the Pacific.