Visiting the Elwha Valley

Snow crests the banks of the Elwha River
Fresh snowfall covers the banks of the Elwha River.

NPS Photo (J. Burger)


The Elwha area is currently closed to vehicle traffic beyond the Madison Falls parking lot at the park boundary due to extensive flood damage/road washout. Parking and turnaround space are limited.The Olympic Hot Springs Road is open to bicycle/pedestrian traffic beyond Madison Falls parking lot. There are no visitor facilities beyond the gate at the parking lot. A bypass trail provides access around the flood damage. Pets are permitted on leash on the road and bypass trail only. Be sure to check road status and trail conditions before your visit.


The Elwha is the Olympic Peninsula's largest watershed and prior to the construction of two dams in the early 1900s, was known for its impressive salmon returns.

The Elwha Valley is located in the central northern area of Olympic National Park. Located 11 miles west of Port Angeles, the Elwha Valley is reached by the Olympic Hot Springs Road, off of Highway 101 (directions).

Today, the Elwha River is the site of one of the largest ecosystem restoration projects in National Park Service history. With its sparkling river surrounded by mountains, the Elwha Valley is a popular destination for all.

General information about the Elwha Valley, facilities, trails, camping, and regulations can be found on the Elwha brochure.

Map and description of locations where you can learn more and Experience Elwha River Restoration.


Places to Stay

The Elwha Valley has no campground facilities.
Nearby lodging can be found in Port Angeles or within the park at Lake Crescent.


The Olympic Hot Springs Road and Whiskey Bend Road offer sightseeing opportunities through the valley's lowland and montane forests, as well as access to a number of hiking trails.

Popular dayhikes in the area include the Boulder Creek trail and the Humes Ranch Loop.

In 2024, Olympic National Park, the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe, and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife extended the closure of recreational and commercial fisheries in the Elwha River until June 2025. Make sure to check out fishing regulations for Olympic National Park before you come.

Nearby Areas

The Olympic National Park Visitor Center, Hurricane Ridge, Lake Crescent, and the Sol Duc Valley are all within a one-hour drive of the Elwha Valley.

Two friends in the Elwha
A number of trails in the Elwha are great for day hikes.

Henry Meyer


Last updated: May 13, 2024

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600 E. Park Avenue
Port Angeles, WA 98362


360 565-3130

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