Clallam County is located in the northern portion of Washington State’s Olympic Peninsula. It is bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean and on the north by the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Adjacent to Clallam County on the south and east is Jefferson County. As of the 2010 U.S. Census, Clallam County had a total land area of 1,738.33 square miles and a population of 71,404. Port Angeles is its largest city with a population of 19,038. Also of interest:
- The intersecting watershed sub-basins(4): Hoh-Quillayute, Crescent-Hoko, Dungeness-Elwha and Hood Canal.
- Major lakes: Ozette Lake and Lake Crescent.
- Major rivers: Elwha River, Dungeness River, Soleduck River, Bogachiel River, Hoko River, Hoh River and Big River.
- Gray Wolf Ridge (7,218 feet) is part of the Olympic Mountains and the highest point in Clallam County.
- Located along the northern coast of the county is the Dungeness Spit which is the longest natural sand spit in the United States. The Dungeness Spit offers a natural protections to an inner bay, tideflats, and an estuary which are part of the larger Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge.
Migration patterns have apparently reawakened for the Elwha River's wild steelhead. Studies show that the fish may have retained much of their genetic drive despite 100 years of being trapped behind dams. We continue our series 'Returning home: The Elwha's genetic legacy' with part two of seven.