Hike past Happy Four Shelter. Starting at the Hoh Rainforest Visitor Center, take the only trail out into the forest itself. Reserve no more than 30 days in advance. Olympic National Park: Glacier Meadows via Hoh River Trail. The bio-diversity on this hike is seldom seen on such an accessible backpacking trip. © 2020 The Outbound Collective - Terms of Use - Privacy Policy. 8 miles, day 2- Lunch Lake to Glacier Meadows- approx. Best of Glacier Meadows: Find must-see tourist attractions and things to do in Glacier Meadows, Washington. Pass a trail on the right that leads 1.4 miles to a campsite. Hoh River Trail to Blue Glacier, Olympic National Park /September 18, 2014 As we ascended from Elk Lake, we began to traverse a ridge above Jemrod Creek that offers beautiful views of Mt. Ahead, the trail continues southeast, then rounds to the northeast. Most people hike the initial parts of this trail and turn around to retrace their steps once they have been overwhelmed with enough beauty. This easy waterfall crossing over a bridge is a great photo spot. After 12 miles along the river you will begin to climb. 45 miles Steel and The Brothers (Mt. On your way to the trail-head you will need to stop and get permits at the Wilderness Information Center in either Quinault or Port Angeles. The Olympic Peninsula boasts some of the most spectacular terrain in the country and unique natural wonders you’ll ever experience. You can find the latest updates on Olympic here. Sample Itenerary. Pack up camp and deposit extra items along the route to the summit. Climb up and over Appleton Pass--and past huckleberries, western red cedar, and hemlocks--to soak in this chain of natural hot springs. If you want to climb Olympus in 3 days it's best to get a permit to camp at either Elk Lake or Glacier meadows. We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. 7.7 miles. 15 miles. On Wednesday, I began my next backcountry adventure as I wandered up the Hoh Rain Forest. The Outbound works best with JavaScript enabled. The glaciers on Mount Olympus, with their terminal moraines at about 4,200 feet, are the lowest elevation glaciers at that latitude on the planet. Glacier Meadows – Olympic Guard Station Elevation Change: -3,765 ft. Day 5. Go PRO to support our mission and get benefits like gear deals, no ads, and more! Once you've rapped off the summit, get ready for some glacier travel and retrace your steps. Follow signs and a very well-maintained trail over... Backpack the Hoh River Trail to Blue Glacier, Hike the Hoh River Trail to Five Mile Island, Explore the Hoh Rainforest and Hall Of Mosses. Once there, we had warmed up significantly and we shed some layers. Please explore responsibly! Alternate: There is a 4th class scramble route up the east face of Olympus but it is reported to be very loose and unpleasant so it's not recommended. Spend some time exploring the blue-tinged glacier and views of Mount Olympus. River valleys are usually snow-free even in winter, though fall, winter, and spring bring the rain. After Lewis Meadow, the trail climbs 3,000 feet in less than 4 miles to Glacier Meadows Camp, just a short trek to Blue Glacier and the route to climb Mount Olympus. Olympus, and all its glaciers. I was shocked with how little snow was still in Glacier Meadows. Day 1: Hoh River Trailhead – Glacier Meadow. Your journey begins in the Hoh Rain Forest on one of the most impressive lowland backpacking trails in Washington. The route ends in Glacier Meadows. A 35m or longer rope is preferred. A few years back the trail suffered quite a washout at a very steep section just shy of the hanging valley cradling Glacier Meadows. There are two shelters here as well as an outhouse. Angeles and Tyler Peak (Four Passes Loop); Mt. -> From Glacier Meadows, there are two main options to reach the Blue Glacier: OPTION #1: Follow the Terminus Primitive Trail south for 0.5 miles until reaching the lower end of the Blue Glacier at ~4800' elevation.This route option requires much longer glacial travel than the alternate option (see below). Olympic National Park is, in my opinion, one of the most underhyped parks in the United States. Olympic National Park – Hoh River Trail ... We continued up the trail into the Glacier Meadows. Hike to top of the lateral moraine east of the Blue Glacier. The Olympic National Park website said there was 3 to 4 feet so we expected a lot, but when we got there it was mostly melted out. Blue Glacier on Muont Olympus. Drive US-101 through Port Angeles to 12.5 mi south of the town of Forks. This route traverses to the left over a pass and onto another glacier on the backside of the ridge in front of you. Ascend the steep snow to the summit block. The approach is long, you must cross a glacier, and once you are to the summit block the easiest way up is on loose 4th class rock, however a short pitch of 5.4 rock is recommended instead. You are now on one of very few remaining valley glaciers in the state. On day 1, hike into Glacier Meadows. From here chose your route up to the top of the snow dome, the easiest option changes over the course of the season. SEASON: Higher up, prime hiking starts in July and extends into October. Once past the pitch there is a slung boulder that can be used to bring the remaining party members up. Follow the top of the moraine along the Blue Glacier until you find a suitable route down. This is the first trip here for both of us. Glacier Meadow (Olympic National Park) July 22, 2015 July 22, 2015 / pnwpeaks. Honestly spending a night bivied up here was the highlight of the trip, getting to watch the sunset over the pacific and being awoken by rays on your face absolutely made our trip. This hike has it all, from rainforests to high aline lakes, glaciers and the peak of the tallest mountain in the Olympic Range, all along one incredibly beautiful and popular trail. Trail Map | Photo Gallery. If you are going on a popular weekend (4th of July) it might pay to try and get your permit the day before your trip begins. Bear left at Y-junction, and continue hiking northeast toward the Hoh River. Cross footbridge over the Hoh River and enter the Glacier Creek drainage. We're committed to building a better, more inclusive home for the modern outdoors. After a few hundred yards there will be a sign pointing you in the direction of the Hall Of Mosses. You then ascend this glacier up to and over the false summit until you are below a steep snow slope and the summit block. Getting to the summit is no easy task. Be the first to leave a review! Cross a rugged coastline on the edge of Washington's Hoh Rainforest. This Olympic National Park trip certainly lives up to its name and is nothing less … Reservations can also be made for Elk Lake, Glacier Meadows, Hoh Lake and the Seven Lakes Basin Area. From 375 Glacier Meadows attractions, Yelp helps you discover popular restaurants, hotels, tours, shopping, and nightlife for your vacation. BEAR PROTOCOL: Food canisters are required and available (free, $3 donation suggested) from the Wilderness Information Center. Snow Dome is easily seen in this photo. Olympus towering above the ice. Located just seven miles from the West Entrance to Glacier National Park our meadow situated on 8.5 acres offers beautiful scenery that our area of Montana is famous for.  - Out-and-Back Trail. The recommended route takes you up the North Ridge in a single short pitch which has a couple of low to mid 5th class moves down low. Follow in the footsteps of one of the region's earliest explorers. Descend to the glacier over the loose moraine. Be careful not to know rocks down on other parties in this area. Climb the tallest mountain on the Olympic Peninsula. PERMITS: Required ($5, plus $2/person/night). Link lush, mossy forests with alpine lakes and meadows on this 35.2-mile backpacking trip in Olympic National Park. Glacier National Park The east side of Montana's Glacier National Park, from the Continental Divide to the park's boundary, is closed. Hike through temperate rain forest alongside the Hoh River to the tip of the Blue Glacier--the largest glacier in Olympic National Park--and 7,980-foot Mt. Rate this Adventure Summit and head back to grab your stuff and descend back to Glacier meadows. So, of course it goes without further notice that I must report on the ladder of doom that you’ll find on your way to Olympic National Park’s Glacier Meadows at the near terminus of the Hoh River trail. Olympic National Park: Glacier Meadows via Hoh River Trail On this climb from the Hoh River's silty riffles to high-country glacier views, you'll pass through a moss-hung rainforest that might be the lushest place in America. While they are currently in retreat, they have existed because … First night- Start at Sol Duc trailhead, camp at Lunch Lake, approx. 40 miles. The summit of Mount Olympus is a tough climb that requires an ice axe, crampons, and the skills to use them, even into early summer. The hike back to Glacier Meadows was a slow one. Enchanted Valley. Drive to and park at the Hoh Rain Forest Visitor center. At the base of the summit block get ready to climb some rock! You can also rent a bear canister from the rangers at the WIC, you need to be able to store your food properly as there are many bears in Olympic National Park. There are many marked camp sites along the way, as well as dispersed camping on the sand bars in the river bed. This area does not have a limit for the number of permits issued (although it still requires permits). End your day with a splash on the Olympic Peninsula. Unique features: Temperate rain forest, opportunites to view wildlife, views of Mount Olympus and Blue Glacier from the end of the trail Level of difficulty: Easy to moderate Distance: 17.4 miles to Glacier Meadows Elevation change: 600 feet to 4,300 feet Best Season… Wilderness Camping Permits (Olympic National Park) Contributors . The well trodden and well marked trail begins in the rainforest, and is flat and follows the river for the first few miles. After you reach Glacier Meadows camp it's a short walk up the meadow pass to the ridge of the lateral moraine where you are presented with a stunning view of the Blue Glacier and Mount Olympus. This will minimize the distance you have to travel on the 2nd summit day. © 2020 Pocket Outdoor Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. Follow the Hoh River Trail for 17 glorious miles through one of Olympic National Park’s famous rainforests all the way to the glaciers of 7,969-foot Mount Olympus, highest mountain within the range. This will minimize the distance you have to travel on the 2nd summit day. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. If you plan to camp at either Elk Lake or Glacier Meadows be warned the permits are first come first serve and they do run out. Join Joey Coconato and I on a 3 day backpacking trip in Washington States Olympic National Park. Elk Lake: Skirt the eastern edge of this small backcountry lake. The Hoh's major hiking trail is the Hoh River trail, which leads 17.3 miles to Glacier Meadows and Blue Glacier, on the shoulder of Mount Olympus. One can climb it with just a few nuts and cams (up to a #2). We’ll hike the final distance along the river and through the old growth forest, aiming to reach the trail head in the early afternoon. Just take your time. Pass spectacular old-growth dripping with moss, nurse logs providing nourishment to full grown trees and end with a panorama including the the aptly named Blue Glacier and Mount Olympus. Neither of us wanted to roll an ankle (which I had already done twice on the trip). More Links . Pass a trail that leads 2.9 miles to Mount Tom Creek Campsite. Wake up at a leisurely hour alongside the rushing Hoh River  for your 10 or so mile hike back to the car. You can find more details about this section of the trip here: Backpack the Hoh River Trail. The Olympic Peninsula is the wettest region in the lower 48 states and the area is known for its spectacular temperate rainforest, subalpine meadows and montane forest. Lush wildflower meadows are ablaze with color in the summer. It's possible to rap off the summit the way you came using a 30m rope but it requires a bit of shenanigans as the bottom anchor is a tiny bit lower than your rope will reach (but you can reach it). The Hoh River Trail follows the river and its primary tributaries to Elk Lake, and continues on to Glacier Meadows and Blue Glacier at the base of Mount Olympus.. Trace the rugged coastline past dozens of sea-carved rock formations on this five-star weekend trip along the Olympic Peninsula. Day 3- Glacier Meadows to Olympus Ranger Station- approx. Much of your third day will be spent backtracking to the Hoh Lake Trail junction, about 1.8 miles back up the trail from Lewis Meadow camp. Huge, moss-covered Sitka spruce form a dense canopy. You'll head southwest across the glacier to the slopes beneath the snow dome. Once you can finally pull yourself away from the spectacular views, head back down to Glacier Meadows camp for the night. Hike in to Lewis meadows (12 mi) Day 2 Once you descend to snow it's time to rope up! Above the campground is the Glacier Meadows Ranger Station. After you have all of that sorted you'll drive the rest of the way to the trail-head at the Hoh Rain Forest Visitor Center. The campsites are well-shaded. The largest of these glaciers are the White, the Blue, and the Hoh. You can spend 2 nights camped along the river if you attack it this way. Register here for the climb. Getting down the moraine to the glacier is tricky when there isn't snow to make your descent easier. If you want to climb Olympus in 3 days it's best to get a permit to camp at either Elk Lake or Glacier meadows. There is a rope ladder over loose scree that you have to down-climb located a few miles from Glacier Meadows. Follow the route description above all the way to the snow dome and instead of heading south towards Olympus, head north towards Panic Peak - it's only a 15 minutes walk out of the way. … Day 4- Olympus Ranger Station to Hoh Visitor's Center- 9.7 miles. This trip is best done over 4 days, this gives you plenty of time to enjoy the Hoh River trail which is pretty awesome in it's own right. The other campground require permits but they are unlimited. Arrange Permits at the WIC in Quinault; Drive to and park at the Hoh Rain Forest Visitor center. From here, the route continues climbing south. We’ll rest our tired legs in the van on the drive back to Seattle, stopping for a celebratory meal en route. On this climb from the Hoh River's silty riffles to high-country glacier views, you'll pass through a moss-hung rainforest that might be the lushest place in America. For the first 12 miles you'll be hiking through towering old  growth spruce trees alongside the Hoh River and there are ample campgrounds and dispersed campsites off the trail. Glacier Meadows. Have you done this adventure? On this climb from the Hoh River's silty riffles to high-country glacier views, you'll pass through a moss-hung rainforest that might be the lushest place in America. Pass a trail on the right that leads 0.9 mile to a campsite. Start from the Hoh Ranger Station (north of the Hoh Rain Forest Campground). https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/washington/hoh-river-trail-to-blue-glacier-trail Day 1. All other sites are first-come, first-served. Nice meadow where I saw what I … There is one unlimited campground after leaving the river and then you come to Elk Lake, the first of the reservable campgrounds. Retrace your route back to the trailhead. Ellinor); $6 each, greentrails.com Guidebooks Olympic Mountains Trail Guide, by Robert Wood ($19); Climber’s Guide to the Olympic Mountains, by Olympic Mountain Rescue ($17); both from mountaineersbooks.org. Its easier going up than down. Link rainforest, old-growth cedar stands, and a rugged sea coast peppered with isolated rock columns on this 8.7-mile loop in Olympic National Park. Once you've crested the snow dome head south and if you are like most parties you'll take the crystal pass route to the summit. Bear right at the trail fork, heading east. Surrounded by majestic pine trees and sprinkled with wildflowers it’s hard to not feel like you … Hike the Hoh River to the Blue Glacier through lush rainforest. This section is very loose and some describe it as the 'crux' of the climb. Mount Olympus is situated 2½ miles south of Glacier Meadows. Driving from Seattle, we found the one in Quinault to be slightly more convenient. There are some AWESOME bivy spots on top of the Snow Dome near Panic Peak. Food Storage Method: Bear canisters are required for camping beyond Glacier Meadows on Mount Olympus. CONTACT: Wilderness Information Center, (360) 565-3100, nps.gov/olym/wic/index.html nps.gov/olym. Otherwise, the trail is fairly straightforward to follow, albeit long. Follow the ... Olympic National Park was established to preserve “the finest example of primeval forest” and so the Hoh Valley remains much like it has for thousands of years. MAPS: Green Trails Seven Lakes Basin/Mount Olympus Climbing (Hoh River Trail); Tyler Peak (Royal Basin); Mt. Turn east onto the Hoh River Road and drive 19 miles to the end of the road at the Hoh Ranger Station and Campground in Olympic National Park (578 ft). At the head of the valley, the trail curves to the right. If you’ve ever wanted to climb a glacier, Olympic National Park might not be the place to start. From Glacier meadows you'll follow the trail even higher until you eventually top out on a glacial moraine. The Hoh Rainforest and river drainage is one the most magical places in Olympic NP. Here are a few one-of-a-kind destinations that are all about nature. Pass a trail on the right that leads to Five Mile Island. Hoh River Trail to Elk Lake - 30.2 Miles Round-Trip Elk Lake is located 15.1 miles from the Hoh Rainforest Ranger Station in Olympic National Park. -Mapped by Elisabeth Kwak-Hefferan and Ted Alvarez. I highly recommend it! The Hoh River Trail is well-maintained and flat for a good majority of the hike but ascends quickly from the Hoh River up to Glacier Meadow. You'll be rewarded with unparalleled views of the Olympics, the Cascades and the Ocean to the west. It’s a 4-6 mile trek from Glacier Meadows to the summit, with an elevation change of almost 3,600 feet. There's even a research station with a spectacular alpine toilet up there. Hike northeast on the Hoh River Trail. Total- approx. Wake up with the sunrise and laugh at the people who had to wake up 3 am to cross the glacier down below. 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