• 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 »

The Elwha Watershed

The Elwha Watershed:
With 321 square miles of drainage and 70 miles of river and tributaries, the Elwha River is the largest watershed in the peninsula. A large amount, 83%, is located within Olympic National Park, sheltering it and making it a particularly pristine river habitat.

The Elwha dam is located at river mile 4.9, behind which is Lake Aldwell. Glines Canyon dam is downstream at river mile 17, holding back Lake Mills. The Lower Elwha Klallam tribe reservation is located around the mouth of the river on the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Just east of this sits the city of Port Angeles.

 
Map of Elwha watershed and dams
Map of the Elwha watershed and its surroundings

Did You Know?

marmot

Although related to other marmots and groundhogs of North America, the Olympic marmot is unique. An endemic species, it is found only in the Olympic Mountains. Visitors to the high country of Olympic National Park may be lucky enough to encounter a marmot sunning itself near its burrow.