• Olympic: Three Parks in One


    National Park Washington

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Madison Falls Trail Closed for Repairs Beginning July 7

    The one-tenth mile Madison Falls Trail and trailhead parking lot located in Elwha Valley will close to public entry beginning on Monday, July 7 while crews make improvements and repairs.

  • Hurricane Ridge Road Closed to Vehicles Sunday 8/3 (6:00a - noon)

    Due to the "Ride the Hurricane" bicycle event, the road to Hurricane Ridge will be closed above the Heart o' the Hills entrance station from 6:00a to noon on Sunday August 3rd.

  • Spruce Railroad Trail Improvements to Begin August 5

    Spruce Railroad Trail will be closed from the Lyre River TH to approximately 0.25 miles east of Devil’s Punchbowl. Work is expected to be completed by the end of October. The remainder of the trail will be accessible from the Camp David Jr. Road TH. More »

A Rare Haven

brown owl with spotted and streaked markings sits on lichen draped branch of old growth tree

Northern spotted owls, which depend on old growth forest, are listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.

Many wildlife species evolved in a Pacific Northwest where thousands of square miles of lowland forests covered what is now cities, farms, roads, and commercial timberlands. As little as five percent of the original lowland forest may be left. There are few places left for old-growth dependent species. Places like Olympic are essential for their survival and some research indicates even remaining preserved areas may not be large enough to keep some threatened species from declining.

The Old Growth Community
Species like spotted owls, marbled murrelets, northern goshawks, fisher, Cope’s giant salamanders, Vaux’s swifts, and many smaller, less charismatic amphibians, insects, small mammals, and plants are closely associated with these beleaguered islands of habitat. Humans too, have few places to experience the scale and humility these forests offer.

Did You Know?

Mossy downed log in dense forest

The old growth forests of the Pacific Northwest produce three times the biomass (living or once living material) of tropical rain forests. More...