As much as we love it here, we all know it can be dreary sometimes in the Pacific Northwest—and as it turns out, many of our towns and geographical features have names to match. Some explorers and pioneers had a real rollercoaster of a time here, because for every Mount Triumph, there's also a Mount Despair.
Some of these names, although blunt, really tell their own story: Mount Terror, for example, or Foulweather Bluff.
A lot of those origins seem weather-related. In one case, an explorer couldn't find something because of the fog. In a few cases, an expedition—or a group of cattlemen—got stuck somewhere kind of miserable and inconvenient during a harsh winter.
Others are almost a personal vendetta towards the places themselves: Deception Pass, Mount Horrible, Useless Bay, Cape Disappointment.
It’s notable that most of these places had perfectly serviceable names before white explorers came along and gave their own bummer spin while drawing their maps. For example, before Charles Wilkes named Point No Point, it was called Hadsks, or “Long Nose.”
From Desolation Peak to Crying Lady Rock, these places were perhaps not named by people in a good mental place.Read More