• Olympic: Three Parks in One

    Olympic

    National Park Washington

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  • Ditch Maintenance Along Park Roads: Motorists May Encounter Delays

    Motorists may encounter delays along Sol Duc Road (9/30 - 10/1), Whiskey Bend Road (10/2), Deer Park Road (10/7-10/8), and Hurricane Ridge Road (10/9 - 10/10) due to routine cleaning of roadway drainage ditches.

  • Olympic Hot Springs Road Closed

    The Elwha Valley's Olympic Hot Springs Road is closed to public entry beyond the Altair Campground. Olympic Hot Springs is not accessible from the Elwha. The road is expected to re-open by Summer 2015.

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Shi Shi Beach

Tents along Shi Shi Beach

Tents along Shi Shi Beach

Sarah Bouska, NPS

Notices
Description
Trail Conditions
Camping
Special Concerns
Safety
Map
Photos

 

Notices:

  • As of May 2013, all food, garbage and scented items must be stored, overnight and when unattended, in park-approved Bear Canisters along the entire Olympic National Park Wilderness Coast. Buckets or other hard-sided containers are no longer permitted.
  • Pets, use of weapons, and wheeled devices are prohibited on coastal beaches and trails.
  • A Makah Recreation Pass must be purchased in Neah Bay prior to arriving at any trailheads on the Makah Indian Reservation.
  • Overnight parking for Shi Shi is permitted only at designated private parking lots.
  • Utilize existing fire rings or build campfires on the beach to prevent damage to tree roots. Use driftwood only.
  • Expect large crowds at Shi Shi Beach during summer months. There has been as many as 50 to 250 campers along Shi Shi Beach on busy weekends.
 

Description:

Ecosystem type: Coastal Forest and Ocean Beach
Trail tread types: Well-maintained boardwalk, muddy road bed, sandy beach
General elevation trend: Flat
River crossings: Petroleum Creek may be difficult to cross in winter during heavy rains.
Unique features: Wilderness coast, bald eagle viewing, tidepools.
Level of difficulty: Easy
Distance: 2.0 to 4.5 miles
Elevation change: 200 ft. to sea level
Best Season: April through October

 

Camping

Permits/Reservations: Obtain permits in person at the Wilderness Information Center (WIC) in Port Angeles or at the South Shore Lake Quinault Ranger Station. Call for hours. Before your trip, contact the WIC at 360-565-3100. If you are hiking south of Shi Shi beach & camping, reservations are required May 1 through Sept. 30.
Food Storage Method: As of May 2013, all food, garbage and scented items must be stored, overnight and when unattended, in park-approved Bear Canisters along the entire Olympic National Park Wilderness Coast. Buckets or other hard-sided containers are no longer permitted. Hanging food is prohibited because raccoons climb trees, jump onto food bags and tear them open.
Location and sites: Sites are scattered along the beach and in the forest.
Toilet Facilities: Three pit toilets are available at Shi Shi Beach: one at the south end of the campsites in the woods at the park boundary; one behind the wooded campsites on south side of Petroleum Creek; and one near Willoughby Creek. Always use toilets!
Water Sources: Petroleum Creek and Willoughby Creek. Most coastal water sources have a tea-stained appearance. The light tan color originates from tannin leached from leaves. Cryptosporidium and giardia exist in coastal streams and rivers; therefore, always filter or boil water. Iodine is ineffective against cryptosporidium.
Stock: Prohibited on all park beaches and beach trails.

 

Special Concerns:

Leave No Trace of your stay to protect vegetation and prevent further camping restrictions from being imposed. Camp in preexisting sites or on sand to prevent damage to vegetation. Do not build driftwood furniture; leave the wilderness wild.

Campfires: At Shi Shi Beach, protect coastal forest by burning driftwood only. Utilize existing fire rings or build fires on the beach to protect tree roots in forested sites.

Wildlife Precautions: Due to the ingenuity of raccoons and other wildlife in obtaining human food, as of May 2013, all food, garbage and scented items must be stored, overnight and when unattended, in park-approved Bear Canisters along the entire Olympic National Park Wilderness Coast. Buckets or other hard-sided containers are no longer permitted. Bear canisters can be rented from the WIC in Port Angeles.

 
Headland Overland Trail Marker

Target marking headland overland trail access

NPS

Safety:

  • Know the tides.
  • Carry a map and tide chart to plan your route.
  • Be prepared to hike over headland trails during high tides. Some headlands cannot be rounded during the lowest of tides.
  • When camping on the beach, be sure to camp above the high tide waterline.
 
Wilderness Ranger contacting visitors at Shi Shi Beach
Avoid building driftwood structures. They can be dangerous and detract from the wild character of the coast.
Sarah Bouska, NPS
 
Bear Canisters to keep bears and raccons out of food.
Bear canisters are required to keep raccoons, bears and other coastal wildlife out of human food and camps.
Sarah Bouska, NPS
 
Illegal Food Storage on the Coast
Raccoons can easily obtain food hanging in bags. Never hang food on the coast. Always use hard-sided containers like bear canisters.
Sarah Bouska, NPS
 
A Nice small beach fire at Shi Shi Beach
Large campfires can easily be blown out of control by coastal winds and into large driftlogs. Small fires like this one are more easily contained - and burn less wood - which can be scarce in some areas along the coast.

Build small driftwood fires on the beach and not in forested sites. This can damage tree roots.
Sarah Bouska, NPS
 
Sunset at Shi Shi Beach
Sunset at Shi Shi Beach
Bryan Bell, NPS

Did You Know?

white flower

Does this flower look familiar? The bunchberry, a common groundcover of Olympic's lowland forest, is closely related to the dogwood trees found throughout North America.