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Weyerhaeuser owns vast amounts of private timberlands in the Pacific Northwest. The land is accessible to hikers, hunters and others by a limited number of permits.
West of Mt. St. Helens their holdings are great habitat for elk, and other animals. This year I paid for a permit to enter those lands by foot.
After parking at a gate north of the Kalama River Road on a cold and breezy early-December day, I spent five hours hiking logging roads as I looked for elk in the upper Gobar Creek drainage.
At the end of Road 6324 there was evidence of an old elk camp. And, there was quite a lot of elk sign in the area.
On the way back to the car, I continued to spot elk tracks. It brought back memories of my youth when the old cowboy would remind me: Son, track soup makes for mighty thin gruel.