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The West Elwha River Trail leads northward from Altaire Campground, paralleling the river for two miles and ending on Herrick Road north of the park boundary.

Begin this hike at the trailhead in the northern portion of the campground. It leads northward, paralleling the river along a steep hillside. One and a half miles from the campground the route crosses Hughes Creek. After this crossing the trail descends 325 feet to the rivers edge. From this point the trail turns westward avoiding a bend in the river. The trail follows Freeman Creek for a short distance before crossing it and reaching the park boundary. Beyond the park boundary the trail enters private land and eventually reaches Herrick Road three miles from the trailhead.

Directions: From Port Angeles, Follow Highway 101 westward approximately 8 miles to Elwha River Road, a.k.a. Olympic Hot Springs Road. Turn left and follow the river road southward into Olympic National Park. Three miles from Highway 101 you'll reach the Elwha Campground, continue past this facility to the Elwha Ranger Station. (Here you can obtain trail conditions and camping permits.) Beyond the ranger station veer right as the Whiskey Bend Road leads to the left. Follow this road a short distance to the entrance for Altaire Campground. Park in the campground day-use parking area and begin this hike from the trailhead at the northern end of the campground.

Elevation: 400 feet

Ending Elevation: 600 feet

Usage: Heavy in Summer

Difficulty: Moderate

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Olympic National Park, Washington

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The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

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