Cover of Olympic National Park

Olympic National Park

A Natural History

Tim McNulty

This magisterial text gave me everything I wanted to know about the geology, ecology and natural history of the peninsula. But while there is a brief guide to visiting the park, this is not a guidebook. Organized into four broad but thorough sections (The Mountains, The Forest, The Coast, Humans and the Landscape), this is a comprehensive survey of the place. McNulty is a poet who has lived and worked here for many years, and his lyricism and personal perspective make this book distinctive. It reads as though it is written by someone who loves being in the outdoors, and these spaces in particular, who is gifted at bringing those experiences to the page. Here is a book that I would give to anyone who wanted to know why I am excited by this place.

Book Info

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Publisher Description

Renowned for its old-growth rain forest, wilderness coast, and glaciated peaks, Olympic National Park is a living laboratory for ecological renewal, especially as the historic Elwha River basin regenerates in the wake of dam removal. In this classic guide to the park, Tim McNulty invites us into the natural and human history of these nearly million acres, from remote headwaters to roadside waterfalls, from shipwreck sites to Native American historical settlements and contemporary resource stewardship, along the way detailing the park’s unique plant and animal life. McNulty reminds us that though “the mountains and rivers remain ‘timeless, ‘ our understanding of the lifeforms that inhabit them–and the effects our actions have on their future–is an ongoing, ever deepening story.” Color photographs Practical advice on how to make the most of your visit Handy flora and fauna species checklists Inspiring descriptions of endangered species recovery Detailed look at Elwha River restoration after dam removal (Publisher’s Description)

On this shelf:
Discovering the Olympic Peninsula