Alright, this might be the coolest hike I've been on yet.
The day started out overcast, so I almost called this one off. Luckily, the clouds to the South had already burned off by the time we were crossing the Hood Canal bridge to take 101 south. The tide was out and the water smelled just like being on the coast.
The hike to the summit was no joke. We did about 2400' of elevation gain over 3 miles on the way up starting in lush forest, over exposed rocks, near snow banks, and straight up the side of the mountain.
Mt Rainier was visible on the horizon behind some clouds. The South Hood Canal and Lake Cushman are visible below.
You can hardly tell, but there's a person walking on the trail through the grass near the tree line in the top of the photo. This is close to the summit, but after a couple miles of hiking.
Looking northeast over Mt Washington and the Hood Canal. Just a few minutes later, we reached the summit and the views change dramatically to a stunning 360 views into the Olympics.
Mount Olympus, which isn't visible from sea level is in the distance on the left in this photo.