Exploring Olympic National Park

07 Sep, 2014

It’s sad to say but I haven’t really explored Olympic National Park as much as I’d like – or at all. So when I had some downtime this weekend, I figured I would head to Ocean Shores for the weekend and spend some quality time exploring the Quinault region of Olympic National Park. I ventured into the park in the early afternoon, first driving around the North Shore of Lake Quinault which was breathtaking and felt like I was driving in a Subaru commercial. Needless to say, I rallied around the corners and loved every minute of it.

Eventually I found myself at the trailhead of Lake Irely. It was a 2.2 mile round trip hike and looked like a great beginner hike. The hike had a ton of bridges, old growth and massive trees along the journey.

Unfortunately Lake Irely wasn’t so much of a lake when I got there – it was completely dry. Rather than go on a further hike, I turned around so I had time to enjoy the coast in the evening.

After the hike, I stopped at the multiple waterfalls along the South Shore road. They were truly breathtaking and so close to the road.

Sunday morning I had a chance to get into the park earlier and take more time doing a harder hike. I ended up doing the Fletcher Canyon Trail – which I had spotted from the road the day before. I felt more comfortable doing the hike with another car parked at the trail and started my trek up the mountain. It was very clearly a trek since it was a 1100 feet gain and a 4 mile roundtrip hike.

The lower portion of the trail was in good condition but the upper portion had down logs, debris and some general climbing over and under things to get through. Regardless it was a good hike.

I reached the top where the waterfalls and stream are at which was totally worth the hike. Another couple were there so I was able to chat with them and ended up hiking down with them.

This weekend I was able to cross two hikes off my checklist and it made me really excited to get back on the trails for more. It’s definitely good for the soul to get outside and explore the woods.

About the author


From the beginning of time, I was Shannon. From the beginning of snowboarding, I was Shay. From the beginning of online communities, I was Shayboarder. In the end, I’m the writer, photographer, editor, publisher, guru of sorts, product tester, curvy girl, and most importantly the snowboarder behind it all. Follow me on this journey through snowboarding, mountain biking, traveling and fun experiences!

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