• Olympic: Three Parks in One

    Olympic

    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.

  • 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 »

  • Safety Advisory: Mountain Goats

    NPS has received reports of aggressive mountain goats near trails at Hurricane Ridge, Royal Basin, Seven Lakes Basin, Lake of the Angeles, & Grand Pass. Visitors are required to maintain a distance of at least 50 yards from all wildlife. More »

  • Safety Advisory: Rabies

    Rabies has been detected in a single bat in the Lake Crescent area of the park. Rabies exposure is extremely rare, but fatal if untreated. Anyone observing unusual or aggressive behavior among park wildlife should inform a park ranger as soon as possible. More »

Mountains

BaileyRangeFromHurricaneRidge_BB
Bailey Range from Hurricane Ridge
 

From the 7,980-foot summit of Mount Olympus, the Pacific Ocean shimmers in the distance, less than 33 miles west. Between the highest peak in the Olympic Mountain range and sea is a jumble of rugged peaks, whose shoulders are decorated with meadows and lakes. Below treeline, scattered subalpine forests give way to steep forested slopes ending in broad, U-shaped valleys. In all directions mountains and valleys radiate from Mount Olympus like spokes on a wheel. How did this range rise to glacier-capped heights from its birth in the ocean? What is the weather like? What does the future hold for the glaciers still shaping the highest peaks? And what plants and animals survive in the mountains, coping with conditions humans would find very challenging?

Where to See Mountains

On a clear day, Hurricane Ridge, at nearly a mile above sea-level, offers the easiest place to view the Olympic Mountains. Sit on the visitor center terrace or walk the nature trails. Or, if your vehicle is appropriate (no trailers or RVs), drive the narrow, dirt Obstruction Point or Deer Park roads to sample the alpine.

Though most of the peaks do not have trails to their summits, dayhikes or overnight backpacks on the park's trail system can take you to basins, lakes and passes surrounded by peaks.

Did You Know?

dam with water flowing

Removal of two dams on the Elwha River is the second largest ecosystem restoration project in the National Park System.