Leaving Clallam Bay in northwest Washington, we turned around and headed south once again. Our destination was Forks which we last visited in 2014. The town of Forks, population 3,500, is best known as the setting for author Stephenie Meyer’s “Twilight” book series and five subsequent movies. Twilight fans come to Forks from all over the world to have their pictures taken at different locations mentioned in the book but the funny thing is the only part of Forks actually filmed in the movie was the town sign! The town was quick to use the Twilight series to their advantage and along Main Street are many small shops and hotels with the word “Twilight” in the name.
Last time we were in Forks it was a short stop so we never had a chance to visit the beaches nearby. This time we booked a week’s stay so we would have plenty of time to explore.
Our first outing took us to Rialto Beach less than ten miles from Forks. We waited to go until the afternoon so we would be there during low tide. During low tide you have a better chance of seeing marine life in the tide pools and we also wanted to walk to the “Hole in the Wall” which is only accessible during low tide.
The west coast beaches with their rugged coastline and jagged rocks are so different from the east coast. We walked the short distance to the beach, passing huge piles of driftwood that commonly washes ashore.
We had a one and a half mile hike to our destination, “Hole in the Wall”, which doesn’t seem like a terribly long distance. But it was a long, exhausting hike out and back due to the rocky beach. The beach is covered with small rocks and even though we had on shoes it seemed for every two steps we took forward, we slid back a step on the rocks. If we tried to walk closer to the water we sank in deep tiny pebbles worse than sand, we would get wet and the water was cold!! When we left Forks the temperature was around 80 degrees. On the beach it was 57 degrees with a stiff wind blowing from the north. Even with jackets, we were cold!
Once we reached the Hole in the Wall we had to climb over rocks (never my favorite thing to do!) to reach the opening where you could walk back and forth. You really have to know the tide charts because if you don’t return through the opening in time, you are trapped when the tide comes in. We had read stories of unsuspecting people being caught and clinging to the side of cliffs or trees. We definitely respect Mother Nature and her power!
The walk back was just as slow and agonizing as the trip out. By the time we headed back down the beach the marine layer started rolling in.
When we reached the car you could hardly see in front of you. Meanwhile a few miles back in Forks there was bright sunshine and it was over 80 degrees.
Our pedometers showed between the hike to “Hole in the Wall”, walking around the tide pools and exploring the beach we logged a little over four miles. A very hard four miles. We were exhausted.
After that strenuous hike we were starving so we stopped on the way home at a restaurant on the Quinault Indian Reservation and had dinner. Good food!
Next up: Another nearby beach and hike