Jimmy & The Rainforest Hostel

We stepped out of our comfort zone a little bit in order to spend a few days up in the Hoh. After deciding that the drive was to far to allow us to do the long hikes we were planning, we thought we would just get a motel up near Forks for a couple nights. About 12 miles from the entrance to the park it seemed like the perfect solution. Well the location was great, but the pricing per night was not. Still benefiting from the Twilight phenomenon, the town was not only mostly booked, but the few available rooms we found were 125.00 - 175.00 a night!!! for a Motel 6 style room. Did a little more research and I found the Rainforest Hostel. Checked out the reviews on Yelp, and the majority of them were good, so I gave the number a call to see if I could book us a spot.

We have never stayed in a hostel in all our travels. Not knowing exactly what to expect, other than the owner- Jimmy - had told me on the phone when I reserved that we would need to plan on some morning chores. He also told me a few times “Did you check out our website to see what we are about?” I told him I hadn’t, but I would before we arrived. After I got off the phone I loaded up his website and toured through the pages.

Jimmy opened the Rainforest Hostel about thirty years ago. When we arrived late in the afternoon after a beautiful hike at the Hoh he greeted us and led us into the living room of his home./hostel. We sat through “The Talk” that he gives to every person staying there. It consisted of 3 parts, most all words in favor of Bernie Sanders. But what we took away from it was a “Be kind to all you encounter”. Well, we pretty much feel that way too - so even though we don’t play by maybe the same political book as he does, it was an interesting talk. He then led us out to our “room”. Because we were a couple, we weren’t in the house where most of the rooms were filled with bunkbeds. Our “room” turned out to be a 1960’s era travel trailer surrounded by ferns and trees and parked under a covered carport. Bob and I both kind of gave each other “the look” when he walked us outside, but when we stepped inside it was clean and warm and all we really were in search of was a dry place to lay our heads for the night. It fit that bill. And did I mention it was $10.00 per person/ per night with 15 minutes of chores each morning required.

The next morning we got up and Bob got our coffee going on the jet-boil and put our chairs out. We carry pretty much everything with us in the Jeep that we need for camping, we just hadn’t wanted to sleep in the tent this trip. About an half hour later Jimmy came out and sat and talked with us for awhile then we got our "chore list” choices. Bob choose wood stacking and I pruned a little in the greenhouse.

Over the next two days we spent quite a bit of time with Jimmy. Learned his 76 year history, and shared ours. Bob and he had a lot more in common than we would have thought that first night we met. I will leave you with this haiku that he placed on his website. And would we stay here again, yep.

Everyone who stays will be given a “Bernie Sanders” sticker if you want one.

For Bernie:
all streams lead
meet rising tide
sea change!
by Jimmy Conomos