Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Olympic National Park–Hurricane Ridge
A series of minor problems (leaking brake cylinder, leaking water heater, ladder crunch) quashed our plans to drive the loop of Olympic National Park but we did manage to drive to the top of Hurricane Ridge. At first the views were concealed in a veil of fog…
so we were very happy when the fog dissipated to reveal a hazy look at Port Angles, 11 miles away.
Several trails begin at the Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center parking lot. The trails are paved for a short distance and loop back to the parking lot. These sections are accessible but there are steep parts so most wheelchair users will need to have help. The dry, warm spring and summer meant few wildflowers but we did enjoy the curious young deer.
A picnic area and the Hurricane Hill Trailhead is located about 1 1/2 miles past the visitor center lot at the road’s end. This section of road is not open to RVs. Hurricane Hill Trail is paved for 1 1/2 miles but becomes very steep and inaccessible after 1/2 mile . The paving is rough in spots and there’s a steep drop off on one side.
For more information about accessibility check the park website -here.
We stayed at Heart O' the Hills Campground which is supposed to have an accessible restroom in loop A but we didn’t check it out. There were many empty sites during our middle of the summer, weekday visit. A lot of them are small and not level. Our daughter was visiting for a couple of days and we needed a spot large enough for our RV and her car so we chose a site that was parallel to the road. These sites and a few pull-throughs are large enough for 30-35’ RVs but the roads are narrow with tight bends.
Hurricane Ridge Road starts a sea level, travels 17 miles and gains 5,242’ in elevation. RVs are permitted as far as the large parking lot at Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center. There are long RV spaces at the far end. If you chose to leave your RV at the bottom a few long spaces are located at Olympic National Park Visitor Center. Park