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Olympic National Park in Washington

Olympic National Park

Landscape from the Olympic National Park 

Olympic National Park, which receives nearly three million visitors annually, consists of a variety of landscapes, including mountains, ancient forests, rainforests, the coast and tide pools. Some of the mountains in Olympic National Park are topped with ancient glaciers, including the five-kilometer long Hoh Glacier. Along the western edge of the park are the temperate rainforests, one of the wettest areas in the United States.

Interesting places at the park

Elwha Valley (lowland forest) is the largest watershed washed by Elwha river that offers hiking and fishing opportunities.
Hurricane Ridge (sub-alpine) offers the most scenic views of the landscape. During the spring season, a carpet of wildflowers covers the meadows, and blacktail deer are often seen grazing.

Kalaloch (coast) is a haven for marine animals, and a perfect place for bird watching.
Lake Crescent (lowland forest) has several campsites, picnic areas, and hiking trails. Visitors can enjoy kayaking, sailing, or relaxing on the shores.

Queets (temperate rainforest), Quinault Valley (temperate rainforest), Sol Duc Valley (lowland forest), Staircase (lowland forest), Ozette (coast), Hoh Rain Forest, Mora and Rialto Beach are some other interesting places in the Park.

Animals at the Park

The park provides habitat to a variety of wildlife. The list of sea animals include seals, whales, dolphins, sea lions, and sea otters. While beaver, mink and raccoons are found in the lowlands. Deer, bears, elk, and cougars are spread in valleys and meadows.

Lodging at the Park

There are four major places to stay in the Olympic National Park:

  • Kalaloch Lodge
  • Lake Crescent Lodge
  • Log Cabin Resort
  • Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort

These lodges offer scenic views of the landscape and organize recreational activities for visitors.

Olympic National Park Map

Facts about Olympic National Park

  • Olympic National Park was first established as Mount Olympus National Monument in 1909.
  • The park was re-designated with National Park status on June 29, 1938.
  • It covers an area of 922,000 acres.
  • About 95% of the park is designated Olympic Wilderness.
  • The park was named an International Biosphere Reserve in 1976.

Where is Olympic National Park ?

Olympic National Park is located in Washington state near Port Angeles. The park stretches across parts of Jefferson, Clallam, Mason, and Grays Harbor counties in Washington.

Best time to visit Olympic National Park

The park is open year-round, except for some roads that close when it snows. The snow that falls during winter allows for skiing at the slopes of Hurricane Ridge. The weather is drier in the rainforests from July through September.

Olympic National Park hours

The park opens throughout the year, 24 hours a day. The opening time for certain roads, campgrounds, and the visitor center may vary with the season.

Olympic National Park Tickets

The entrance fee for individual entry on  motorcycle  is US $15 per person while entry fee per private vehicle is US $25.  The entrance fee for bicyclists, pedestrians or hikers is $10.

More about Olympic National Park

Nearby attractions: Bogachiel State Park, Scenic Beach State Park, and Dosewallips State Park.

Related : Washington National Park | Top Ten Most Visited National Parks In USA 

 

Published On: Friday, November 22nd, 2013