Facts and Statistics
There are numerous diverse hiking trails within the Olympic National Park. These trails cut across different biomes, allowing you to explore the Pacific Ocean coast, to the peak of Mt. Olympus. The trails come in different lengths, ranging from less than a mile to many miles, taking several days in the bush. Some of the trails in this area include Dosewallips Trails, Hurricane Ridge, Lake Crescent Lodge, Lake Quinault Lodge, Sul Duc Trails among others.
Hurricane Ridge offers many hiking trails and great hiking to any visitor. It is advisable to start your trip at the Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center. Here, you will find orientation movies, exhibits, and restrooms. In addition, an information desk is normally staffed on weekends from December to March and during summer. a gift shop is also available from May to September as well as several weekends from mid December to March.
During the summer, hiking the Hurricane Ridge on a clear day presents you with a full view of the surroundings. You will be able to see clearly the Straits of Juan de Fuca, Canada, or even Mt. Olympus. While hiking along the trail, you will come across avalanche lilies, Indian paintbrush, and other sub-alpine flowers such as lupine.
Marymere Falls Hiking Trail
This is a self-guided trip although you can also hike with a group of friends or adventure seekers. Situated on Lake Crescent Lodge, this trail is several miles from Storm King Ranger Station. It presents you with 90-foot drop, starting at Falls Creek all the way down to a miniature pool. it is normally a hike through old forests. The final approach however is fairly steep. It is available throughout the year. Elevation gain is around 400 feet.
Fairholme Campground Loop Hiking Trail
This is another self-guided trip on Lake Crescent Lodge. Start your journey at Fairholme store and continue down until you arrive at Camp David Junior Road. From there, head to the north of Lake Crescent which will take you to the Olympic Discovery trail.
This trail, together with Spruce Railroad Trail will lead you to several train tunnels. When you hike on a clear day, you are likely to see the beautiful pristine lake and see the shadows of a train engine that plunged into the lake thousands of years ago. The elevation gain is around 100 feet and you will encounter old growth forest.
Moments-In-Time Hiking Trail
This is a nature trail running from the forest and along the lake. It is accessible with minimal assistance. It is a 0.5-mile hike cutting through the woods and by the shores of Lake Crescent. It offers unique environments ranging from breathtaking views of Pyramid Mountains and Lake Crescent to towering evergreens, lush woods, wildflower meadows, tiny ferns, and spectacular fungi and moss. It is appropriate for all age groups and there is no elevation gain observed.
Lake Quinault Lodge
Hiking at this lodge will take you through more than fifteen trails that are well maintained. Each trail offers a diverse ecosystem and a different perspective. They provide a great means of experiencing the beautiful Quinault valley. It comprises 8 miles of nature hiking trails that are interconnected complete with interpretive signs. You can also bring your leashed dog in some of the trails.
Spruce Tree Trail
This is a third of a mile, easy to walk trail providing a good warm up. the trail passes near the Largest Sitka Spruce in the world and is easily accessible from a gravel road after Rain Forest Resort Village. Visiting the Quinault Rain Forest is not complete without visiting this giant of a tree, that is more than 1000 years old. Myths have it that it was used for building airplanes. Leashed dogs are allowed in this trail.
Maple Glade Trail
When you think of the temperate rain forest, what comes to mind is the Big Leaf Maple that attracts Oregon selaginella moss. This trail is short but absolutely beautiful. It can be found in the Quinault Rainforest and is easy to get to. In the late evening or early morning, the low sun’s angle backlights the huge leaves and the moss displaying different hues of green. If you are looking for a short hike, then you should consider this one.
Western Red Cedar Trail
This is another short trail, although packed with exciting scenery. It was initially constructed more than eight years ago, and during heavy winter rain, it can easily become a stream. Therefore, go prepared with the necessary hiking gear. it is also home to the Western Red Cedar tree, which is one of the oldest in the world. the root forms a cathedral top and is anchored by buttress roots, thus giving it a wide base. Dogs are not allowed on this trail.
Pony Bridge trail
This trail presents a perfect opportunity for hikers who want to experience back country environment. The trailhead is just 17 miles past Lake Quinault Lodge and along South Shore Road. Park your car at Graves Creek Trailhead, which is at the end of the road, and start your 2.5 mile hike into the old growth forest.
The trail is properly demarcated. However, you should know that trail conditions tend to change rapidly during winter storms. Therefore, during early spring and winter, you might have to face fallen trees among other debris along the trail.
Sul Duc Trails
From this trail, you can access the Lovers Lane Loop from the back of the resort. It is a six miles hike, if you go round trip. It is one of the most hiked trails in this area. If you intend to camp overnight or hike longer than a single day, then you are required to obtain a permit. There are excellent views of Mount Olympus, Seven Lakes Basin area, and Mountain Lake.
Most of the way, the trail will rise gradually before dipping, as you approach the lower sides. A hiking stick or trekking poles are handy as you descend the hills due to presence of water flowing down the trail, most times of the year. Roosevelt elk can be found along this trail. You should also watch out for black bears. Take note of cautionary signs along the way.
YouTube User ‘Freddy Johnson’ Hikes The Dosewallips Trail