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Puget Sound and Cascades

Washington, officially the State of Washington, is a state in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. It is the 18th largest state, with an area of 71,362 square miles (184,827 km2). Meanwhile, it’s the 13th most populous state with over 7.4 million people.

However, since approximately 60 percent of Washington’s residents live in the Seattle metropolitan area, much of the state is lightly populated. This leaves plenty of room for wilderness.

Perhaps the best-known wonder of this area is the Puget Sound. That’s because this body of water is an inlet of the Pacific Ocean, and consists of numerous islands, deep fjords, and bays carved out by glaciers. Scenic and serene, the sound includes the San Juan Islands.

The remainder of the state consists of deep temperate rainforests in the west; cascade mountain ranges in the west, central, northeast and far southeast; and a semi-arid basin region in the east, central, and south.

Mount Rainier, an active stratovolcano, is the state’s highest elevation. More than that, it is the most topographically prominent mountain in the contiguous United States.

Photographers prize this area for its lush national parks. Of these, favorites include North Cascades National Park, Mt Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest and Olympic National Park. Whether for trees or waterways, this region offers something for everyone. From its emerald-green islands to eastern mountains kept dry by the rainshadow, this state calls with adventure.

Explore with Cornforth Images.