• 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.

  • 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 »

Park Newsletter June 6, 2008

five mules hitched to rail
Hardworking mules take a break during the annual "barn day" stock packing workshop.
NPS Photo by Maggie Tyler
man loading pack onto mule

Backcountry Horseman Larry Baysinger demonstrates how to properly load a mule during a recent workshop.

NPS Photo by Maggie Tyler

Volunteers and Staff Share Stock-Packing Knowledge

A sure sign that summer is here is when pack strings move back into the park. One of the hardest working groups around, stock animals support all aspects of the park’s wilderness operations by packing in supplies for ranger stations, trail repairs and research, and packing out injured people, tools, and supplies at the end of the season. In addition to our human volunteers, the park is grateful for our stock volunteers as well!

At the beginning of each season, volunteer packers gather to review safety procedures, techniques, and tips and tools of the trade to prepare for another safe and enjoyable season of trail work and packing trips.

Several chapters of the Backcountry Horsemen support Olympic National Park by supplementing packing operations. In 2007, the Backcountry Horsemen donated 1,175 hours of packing and volunteer support to the park. Thanks to their efforts again this spring, we are well on our way to another successful year!

-- contributed by Maggie Tyler, Volunteer Coordinator

Did You Know?

DYK fisher release

Fishers (members of the weasel family, related to minks and otters) were reintroduced to Olympic National Park in 2008-10. They are native to the forests of Washington, including the Olympic Peninsula, but disappeared due to overtrapping in the late 1800s/early 1900s and habitat loss.