This earthcache will take you to an incredible site showing the results of hot lava flowing through forests. The given coordinates will take you to the entrance to The Crawl.
A Northwest Forest Pass is required to park here. Please remain on established trails and boardwalks at all times. Dogs must be leashed. Wheelchair cachers can access the loop boardwalk trail and complete this cache.
To log this cache, please do the following:
1. Visit the site and gather information.
2. Send your answers to the questions below directly to me. If they are correct and you do not send your return e-mail address, you will not get a response from me.
3. If you will be sending your answers later, please tell me when to expect them so that I can track things.
4. Required: A photo of yourself at the entrance to or exit from The Crawl to keep your found log in place. If camera shy, use your name badge or caching name on a piece of paper.
Questions to answer for verification of your visit: (Responses to your answers may be delayed if I am out of internet access, so log your find once your answers are sent.)
1. Estimate the depth of the deepest impression you can find.
2. Describe the texture of the impression at either opening to "The Crawl." Are you able to see anything that indicates it was formed by the former trees?
3. Find the information panel titled “Cushions of Life.” Select one of the animals and tell how it interacted with the returning forest.
4. For kids (and the young at heart) - did you do The Crawl?
5. Don't forget your required photo.
The Trail of Two Forests is a 1/4 mile loop walk on an elevated boardwalk trail over an ancient lava flow that flowed over a mature forest nearly 2000 years ago, surrounding and covering the trees to a depth of 8’ or more. The images of that ancient forest are captured in stone. An emerald forest now grows from the black basaltic lava.
A glowing flow of lava spilled down the gray flanks of the mountain into gullies and ravines. As the molten surface cooled, an insulating roof of rock was formed above searing seams of lava, allowing the lava to flow far into the forested valleys.
“Roaring fires and billowing clouds of smoke followed the flow as it crept through the forest. Smoldering trees toppled in the molten river and jammed against others, damming the flow. A lava pool grew behind the dam until small tongues of ropy lava spilled over the charcoal log dam.”
Only impressions of that former forest remain.
Trees that continued to stand were surrounded by lava and burst into flames. The cooling lava encased the smoldering trunks, leaving rims of rock around charcoal pillars. Over time, the remains of the trees weathered away, leaving deep tree molds.
The lava now lies hidden under moss, ash and mud. Soil-forming mosses were the first organisms to return to live on the barren landscape. The moss became a home for many plants and animals. Seeds and dead organic material were blown in by the wind, eventually forming a layer of soil. Seedlings grew into the cracks and crevices of the basaltic lava.
Today a second forest surrounds you as you walk through the area.
”When we try to pick anything out by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.” - John Muir