Greetings from Olympic National Park

In 1993 I was 16 years old and had just come out in my small town. There was no one else I knew, no support groups, no gay characters in TV or movies. Fortunately, I had very supportive friends. I spent that summer volunteering in the backcountry of Olympic National Park with the Student Conservation Association, and could not have had a more accepting experience, because it was clear we all cared about nature, the environment and our National Parks. I hope our National Lands are a shared space for all of us to set aside our differences and be reminded to share and protect what is most important: the planet we all depend on together.


Olympic National Park

Exploring Olympic’s dynamic landscape is like visiting three parks in one. The high mountains offer snow, glaciers, wilderness and — if you time it right — acres of wildflowers. The lush, verdant Hoh Rainforest is unlike anything else in the Lower 48, and home to Roosevelt elk, black bears and other charismatic wildlife. And the park’s stunning coast offers some of the country's wildest and most spectacular beaches, dotted with tide pools and sea stacks. Visitors can now see where park staff recently removed two large dams, letting the Elwha River flow freely again for the first time in more than 100 years.

State(s): Washington

Established: 1938

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