Touring Hot Springs Washington and Oregon
by Jeff Birkby (Falcon Guides)
© 2014 Jeff Birkby/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Very commercial, website of theirs did not even bother to mention how much it cost, nor that they filter the springs into a basic blue pool setup? We prefer a natural surrounding and did not expect this at all. If they had shown pictures we would not have stopped. Perk? We found some great access points to the Sol Duc River nearby!
I had initially avoided these springs as this is definately a resort atmosphere as the description indicates. The reader must know that this is a very special place with a flat, 1 mile trail to a waterfall, many places to find privacy by the river, and a loop trail (apprx 20 miles) that goes high into Olympic Alpine country and offers some of the best views of Mt. Olympus (the highest peak on the peninsula that is difficult to glimpse from anywhere else! Likely any picture you've seen was from the trail that leaves from the falls). The loop trail meets up with other interior trails as well. This is a much shorter way to access Olympus than going in from the Hoh Rain Forest. I recommend going after Labor Day (due to resort crowds and weather/snow finally melted in the high country) and I was able to get an (expensive little no food allowed) cabin at the resort and do one leg of the loop up & back (18 mi.) in the daylight. The cabin rental included use of the springs! The trail is well travelled and I met a ranger along the way as well as a few other hikers. On the clearest day, from the top of Bogachiel Peak (see the Mountaineers Guide) you may even get a glimpse of the Pacific Ocean!
*Overall, rates TOP on my list of many "day" hikes in the the state of WA. Plus you drive by the jewel Crescent Lake right before the park entrance. Gotta do it!!
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