Some friends and I spent a week in Port Angeles, Washington. Port Angeles is at the northern edge of the Olympic National Park on the south shore of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. That's about as far northwest as you can be in the lower 48 states without being in Canada. Hiking and water sports are the most popular activities there. I highly recommend hiking some of the mountain trails. It's breathtaking and revitalizing to the mind and soul.
(From the Olympic National Park Website)
Olympic Exploration and Settlement of the Elwha Valley.
Since the 1880s, the Olympic Peninsula's spectacular mountains, rainforest, and unique wildlife have captured the attention of visitors, park advocates, and naturalists. By 1890 Naturalist John Muir, Washington Congressman James Wickersham, and Lieutenant Joseph O'Neil, who led the first well-documented exploration of the peninsula's interior, each respectively proposed the creation of a national park on the Olympic Peninsula.
Preservation and Becoming a National Park:
In 1897 the area received its first national designation, as Olympic Forest Reserve, by President Grover Cleveland in response to concern about the area's disappearing forests. Eight years later, in 1909, President Teddy Roosevelt designated a part of the reserve as Mount Olympus National Monument to protect the habitat of Roosevelt Elk, whose population was in steep decline.