Lifestyle

Beauty, relaxation normal at Rain Forest Village

By PAT JENKINS

Editor

Ron Losky, who lived in Northeast Tacoma before trundling off to retirement and a lot of fishing, knew nothing about Rain Forest Resort Village until spending a recent weekend there.

That’s normal, say folks who run the place on Lake Quinault. A lot of people don’t know about it.

“I’ll be back,” Losky said.

That’s normal, too. The Rain Forest Resort has that affect.

In roughly three hours, repeat visitors or first-timers can drive from the Federal Way area to this serene shoreline getaway in the heart of the Olympic National Forest. The relaxation starts immediately upon arrival.

Promotional material describes the resort as “a lovely paradise that remains largely undiscovered by the traveling public.” While the word is slowly getting out, no other description fits –– not with the gorgeous vistas of sky and water and the incredible waterfalls, towering trees and lush vegetation that bathe the trails in peaceful, awe-inspiring wilderness.

For visitors looking to do more than hike or put their feet up, the fishing is good. Losky and angling buddies Orlo Hinman and Ken Nelson testified to that as they relaxed on the deck of their lakeside cabin after a day of rod and reeling.

The cabins combine rustic charm and modern convenience. Though built in the 1930s and ’40s, their features include microwave ovens, refrigerators, whirlpool baths and wood-burning fireplaces. Separate motel units also are available.

The resort’s owners are brothers Don and Dave Morrison. Don can be seen some days windsurfing on the lake, then –– still in his wetsuit –– kibbitzing with visitors in the resort office/general store.

Adding to the local color is Ralph, the battle-worn cat known for fighting with raccoons when it isn’t lazing on the store’s front porch.

Rain is part of the deal, too, though not quite as much as normal this year. Dave Morrison noted that less than 100 inches a year is a drought, and as of May 2, the total was 49.6 .

Swimming at the resort’s beach usually starts at the end of June, heading into the peak visitor season of July and August.

Appetites from swimming or hiking can be satisfied at the Salmon House, a comfortable restaurant and lounge where manager Jeri Peterson and the staff serve mouth-watering seafood dishes and other fare.

Diners enjoy calming views such as sunlight reflecting off the glassy lake –– the kind of visual treats that make the resort and its surroundings special, said Julie Olsen, a resort employee and transplanted Floridian. She and her husband discovered the area while he was stationed with the Army at Ft. Lewis in Tacoma, and now they live near the lake.

“We just love it here,” Olsen said.

That’s normal.

Editor Pat Jenkins: 925-5565, editor@fedwaymirror.com

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