The Hoh Rainforest, pronounced “Hoh,” takes its name from the “Hoh River that flows from Mount Olympus towards the Pacific Coast. At 7,980 feet, it is the tallest and most prominent mountain in the Olympic Mountains of western Washington state. Located on the Olympic Peninsula, it is also the central feature of Olympic National Park. The indigenous Quileute tribe, also known as the Quillayute, are the indigenious peoples of western Washington State peninsula, numbering 2,000 or more inhabitants. They define the Hoh as fast-moving water or snow water.
The Hoh River is formed from glacial runoff in the mountains above the trail. Other explanations state that the Quinault word “Qu,” meaning “boundary,” could be the root of the name as a massive river as the Hoh certainly forms a formidable boundary across the landscape. A third consideration claims that the word “Hoh” translates to “man with quarreling wives.” What the actual history behind the name appears to be lost to time.
Regardless of the name, there’s no question about the allure drawing visitors back to the rainforest year after year. Throughout the winter season, rain frequently falls in the Hoh Rain Forest, averaging 140 inches or 3.55 meters of precipitation each year. The result is a lush, green canopy of both coniferous and deciduous species of mosses and ferns that blanket the surfaces, adding another dimension to the rainforest’s enchantment.
I’m in love with Washington State because it is home to many adventurous opportunities and beauty beyond expression I will explore more when I return during the summer of 2021. 🙂