Queets River Road

Clearwater, Washington

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Meander along one of the Olympic Peninsula’s largest rivers, named for the Quiatso Indian tribe, on a little dead-end road through a temperate rain forest of ferns, flowers and mosses shaded by a canopy of towering conifers. The Queets River, fed by glacial meltwater from Mt. Olympus, is famous for steelhead fishing, and is popular for canoeing and kayaking as well. Watch for rare Roosevelt elk. Salmon may be seen spawning in the fall and winter as well. You can stop and search for one of the country’s largest western hemlocks (227 feet tall and 291 inches in circumference), the Evergreen State’s official state tree. At the end of the road, you can ford the river—on foot only, and only if conditions permit—and hike the popular Queets River Trail to see the park’s largest Douglas fir (212 feet tall and 533.5 inches in circumference). Heavy rains and flooding can cause washouts and temporary closures.
Washington Byways

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Washington Byways

by Tony Huegel (Wilderness Press)

Meander along one of the Olympic Peninsula’s largest rivers, named for the Quiatso Indian tribe, on a little dead-end road through a temperate rain forest of ferns, flowers and mosses shaded by a canopy of towering conifers. The Queets River, fed by glacial meltwater from Mt. Olympus, is famous for steelhead fishing, and is popular for canoeing and kayaking as well. Watch for rare Roosevelt elk.

Salmon may be seen spawning in the fall and winter as well. You can stop and search for one of the country’s largest western hemlocks (227 feet tall and 291 inches in circumference), the Evergreen State’s official state tree. At the end of the road, you can ford the river—on foot only, and only if conditions permit—and hike the popular Queets River Trail to see the park’s largest Douglas fir (212 feet tall and 533.5 inches in circumference). Heavy rains and flooding can cause washouts and temporary closures.

©  Tony Huegel/Wilderness Press. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Fishing, Hiking, Off-Highway Drives
Nearby City: Clearwater
Distance: 27.6
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Access: Easy
Duration: 2 hours
Additional Use: Boating
Local Contacts: Olympic National Park, Queets Ranger Station
Local Maps: Washington Road & Recreation Atlas; Olympic National Forest & National Park
Topo Map: Queets River Road Topographic Map
Guide Book: Washington Byways Guide Book
Driving Directions: View Directions
Trail Directions: View Guide

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