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Traveling over 1,500 miles to experience "One Square Inch"

A BirdNote listener in Texas heard the story about Gordon Hempton’s One Square Inch of Silence, located in the Hoh Rain Forest in Olympic National Park. Known as the quietest place in the United States, the site is emblematic of the need to protect natural wilderness areas from human noise. She was so moved by the story that she traveled from her home in Texas to Washington State to experience the place for herself. Following is an excerpt from her travel notes.


I first learned about One Square Inch of Silence on BirdNote after searching for a quiet place. Yes, I did travel to find a place where I could go to escape the sounds and hustle of everyday life, a place to unwind and reconnect with nature.

Life is filled with good and bad, but lately I was overwhelmed. An area such as the Hoh is supposed to be a sanctuary. I could feel my worries evaporating slowly. Then something magical happened. As soon as my mind quieted, I noticed a definite difference in what I could hear and feel. I lay down and blissfully existed. Taking in everything I could. The leaves, the moss moving, the tree limbs creaking, the scent of clean fresh air. It was so peaceful.

I realized that everyone on this planet needs hope and love. A place to go and experience quiet and calm. Gordon's One Square Inch of Silence makes that possible.

I am ending my trip with some fantastic photos, new found peace and hope.

Written by Ally K. - West Texas

Pictures by a BirdNote listener in the "One Square Inch of Silence" in the Hoh Rainforest: a banana slug, the rock that marks the location, and bare feet on the forest floor

An inchworm *inches* along the "one square inch"