ACTIVITIES & PROGRAMS
Things to Do
From nature walks to snowshoeing there is much to do in Olympic year-round.
The NPS offers free programs in the summer, including coastal forest walks and daily beach and intertidal walks at Mora and Kalaloch. Summer campfire programs are at Mora, Kalaloch, Hoh, Heart O' the Hills, Sol Duc and Lake Crescent. Daily walks and talks on the mountains are offered at Hurricane Ridge. Guided rain forest walks are offered daily at Hoh, and several times weekly at the Quinault ranger station. Old-growth forest walks to Marymere Falls are offered at Lake Crescent. The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) also offers ranger-led interpretive programs in the Lake Quinault area in summer. Check bulletin boards or at visitor centers for times and topics
The Olympic Park Institute offers a series of outdoor Olympic Field Seminars from spring through fall. Topics include geology, wildflowers, timberline ecology, intertidal life, wetlands, marine mammals and Northwest coast Native American art. Contact the Institute at 111 Barnes Point Road, Port Angeles, WA 98363; (360) 928- 3720 or visit www.yni.org/opi for more information.
Biking is allowed on roads, but use caution-many roads are narrow and winding with limited visibility. Bike rentals are available in some gateway communities. Biking is prohibited in the backcountry and on trails, except on Spruce Railroad Trail along the north shore of Lake Crescent and on the 2.4-mile trail to Boulder Creek Bridge.
Boating and Water Sports
With the ocean and so many lakes and rivers, Olympic is perfect for kayaking, canoeing, white-water rafting, sailing, powerboating and waterskiing. Boat rentals are available at Lake Crescent and from Lake Quinault Lodge. Ramps are maintained at Lakes Crescent, Mills and Ozette. Whitewater rafting is available in early summer on the Quinault, Queets, Elwha and Hoh rivers; check nearby communities for outfitters.
Olympic's 17 campgrounds offer 955 campsites. Sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis (no reservations accepted). You must obtain a wilderness permit to camp in the backcountry and outside designated campgrounds. Some backcountry areas require advance reservations; please call (360) 565-3100 for more information. Permits are available at the Wilderness Information Center in Port Angeles, some visitor centers and at the ranger stations. Please also see Camping for more information.
Fishing licenses are not necessary in the park, but Washington State fishing regulations are enforced. Get a copy of park fishing regulations at the Olympic National Park Visitor Center or from ranger stations. Washington State punch cards for salmon and steelhead trout are required. You can obtain cards from sports stores and tackle shops in local communities and along U.S. 101. Anglers must punch the card and fill out other information immediately after catching a salmon or steelhead trout. For ocean fishing from shore, a Personal Use Food Fish license is required.