Hoh River Trail

Olympic
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Hoh River Trail

Distance: 10.1mi
Elevation: 459ft
Time: 5.5-7h

Difficulty Rating:

The Hoh River area of Olympic National Park is an extremely popular place to hike due to the beauty of the dense temperate rainforest. However, for those wanting to distance themselves from the crowds, we recommend hiking along the Hoh River Trail to Five Mile Island.

Getting there

From Forks go south on US-101 for 21.1km. Turn left on Upper Hoh Rd. Follow signs for the Hoh River section of Olympic National Park. After the gate go for a few miles until you reach parking.

About

When to do

Year round

Backcountry Campsites

Yes, along the Hoe River Trail, permits required.

Toilets

Yes, at trailhead.

Family friendly

Yes

Route Signage

Average

Crowd Levels

Moderate

Route Type

Out and back


Elevation


Detailed Description

Begin along the trail just to the right of the visitors centre. There is a dense network of short nature trails leaving from the parking area; however, you just need to follow signs for the Hoh River Trail. Soon you will escape the nature trails and pass the large sign for the Hoh River Trail, outlining mileage for all the destinations along it.

You will trek through the incredibly dense, classic Pacific Northwest temperate rainforest for the entirety of the trail. The first 1.6km or so is always the most impressive. From the humongous trees and bushes, to the ‘Old Mans Beard’ and moss hanging off every branch available, it feels like you’re walking through a fairy tale.

After a 1.6km of hiking you will get your first view of the gently flowing Hoh River. Across the river you will see Mt Tom poking its head out from the forested foothills. The trail will pass by the river several more times, winding left and right, but never gaining a tremendous amount of elevation.

After just over 8.0km of hiking you will arrive at the Five Mile Island campground, which is a great place to stop for the day. It is named as such because of the island that has formed in the river, which is commonly home to deer and elk.

After enjoying the sand beaches beside Five Mile Island return the way you came.

Insider Hints

  • The Hoh River Trail makes for a fantastic backpacking trip. If you have the juice, go all the way to the end of the trail. You can go right up to the edge of the Blue Glacier at the foot of Mt. Olympus!

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