High Divide Loop (7 Lakes Basin)

 

General Location: 15 miles south of Lake Crescent.

Notices:

  • All food, garbage and scented items must be stored in park-approved bear canisters in the Sol Duc/High Divide/Seven Lakes Basin Loop area including all camps adjacent to and enclosed by the Deer Lake Trail, High Divide Trail, and Sol Duc River Trail (High Divide Loop), and adjacent camps along the Mink Lake Trail, East High Divide Trail, and Cat Basin area.
  • Permits are limited between May 1 and September 30th. Reservations recommended. 50% of sites may be reserved. The other 50% are available for walk-up permits at a Wilderness Information Center during business hours.
  • Groups of 7-12 people must camp in designated Group Sites. See Below.
  • Snow persists on this trail until early to mid-July. When the trail is snow covered, ice axe and self-arrest skills are recommended for steep snow slopes.
  • Contact the WIC for information about trailhead shuttles. (360) 565-3100
 

Description

Ecosystem type: Old-growth forest, subalpine meadow, subalpine lake basin, montane forest
Trail tread types: Well-maintained
General elevation trend: Moderate to steep
River crossings: A few creek crossings are necessary.
Unique features: Views of Mount Olympus and other peaks. Elk and bear sightings are common in the Seven Lakes Basin area. Deer Lake is aptly named. Fishing is a popular activity in many of the lakes, though there are no fish in Heart Lake nor in several of the smaller unnamed lakes in the basin.
Level of difficulty: Moderate
Distance: Loop is 18.2 miles
Elevation change: 3,050 feet gained
Best Season: Mid-July through September

 
 

Camping

Permits/Reservations: Camping is limited between May 1 and September 30. Obtain permits at the Wilderness Information Center in Port Angeles during business hours. 50% of campsites can be reserved.

Food Storage Method: All food, garbage and scented items must be stored in park-approved bear canisters in the Sol Duc/High Divide/Seven Lakes Basin Loop area including all camps adjacent to and enclosed by the Deer Lake Trail, High Divide Trail, and Sol Duc River Trail (High Divide Loop), and adjacent camps along the Mink Lake Trail, East High Divide Trail, and Cat Basin area.

Location and sites: Camping is allowed in designated sites only. Camp Location Map; Primary destinations include Sol Duc Park, Heart Lake, Lunch Lake and Deer Lake, each of which has multiple campsites. Between Sol Duc Falls and Sol Duc Park there are many convenient campsites and water. There are very few campsites and little water between Heart Lake and Deer Lake. Lunch Lake is accessed by a 0.5 mile spur trail. Campsites above 3,500 feet are heavily used.

Camping limits are in place for all areas in the Sol Duc/Seven Lakes Basin, Cat Basin & Swimming Bear Lake, Mink Lake, Little Divide, and Hoh Lake/C.B Flats. Camping is permitted in designated sites only. Group sites are located at Sevenmile Camp, Sol Duc Park, Deer Lake, and at C.B. Flats along the Hoh Lake Trail.

Toilet Facilities: Sol Duc Park, Heart Lake, Lunch Lake, and Deer Lake have vault toilets. To prevent these toilets from filling too quickly, do not urinate in these toilets. Urinate on rocks or on the trail at least 200 feet from campsites and water sources. This prevents deer and goats from pulling up plants to get at the salt in urine. In other areas, bury solid waste 6-8" deep and 200 feet from campsites and water sources.

Water Sources: Sol Duc River, Tributary streams and lakes. Always boil, filter, or chemically treat your drinking water to prevent getting Giardia.

Stock: Camp only in designated stock sites at Horsehead and Deer Lake (llamas only).

 

Special Concerns

Leave No Trace: Leave No Trace of your stay to protect vegetation and prevent further camping regulations. Stay on established trails and camp in designated sites only. Avoid walking on or setting gear on vegetation next to campsites or trails.
Campifires: Campfires are prohibited above 3,500 feet. Where fires are allowed, leave no trace of your fire ring. Burn dead and down wood only.
Respect Wildlife: To protect bears and other wildlife, all food, garbage and scented items must be secured from all wildlife 24 hours a day. Bear canisters are required at all camps in this area.

 

Safety

  • The steep slopes of High Divide can remain snow/ice covered until mid-July and sometimes later. An ice axe and self-arrest skills are usually necessary to travel around Bogachiel Peak, along High Divide, and into the basin when these areas are snow covered.
  • Always be prepared for cool, wet weather.
 
Heart Lake Basin
Heart Lake Basin
 
Hoh River from High Divide
Hoh River from High Divide

Jason Bausher

 
Lunch Lake
Lunch Lake
 
Lower Bridge Creek in June
Lower Bridge Creek in June
 
Rangers training on snow above Round Lake
Rangers and Volunteers Training on Snow Above Round Lake
 

Last updated: June 21, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

600 E. Park Avenue
Port Angeles, WA 98362

Phone:

(360) 565-3130

Contact Us