Length/Configuration: 13.6 miles, including 13.2-mile loop (almost all single-track), plus two 0.1-mile (each way) side trails.
Aerobic Difficulty: Strenuous; initial 3-mile climb switchbacks up 2,200' in first 3 miles. Climbing totals 3,150'; if you can make the climb without walking, you are an animal!
Technical Difficulty: Difficult; tight switchbacks, both uphill and downhill; some rough, rooty sections along the ridge.
Scenery: Views of Mt. Olympus, Lake Crescent, Strait of Juan de Fuca and Vancouver Island, and, on a clear day, Mt. Baker and Glacier Peak in the distance; incredible wildflower displays through the meadows.
Special Comments: The rewards are directly proportional to the effort. For advanced riders only!
General Location: The trailhead lies about 5 miles west of Lake Crescent, about 30 miles west of Port Angeles, and 24 miles east of Forks.
Season: The best riding conditions are generally found in late spring through early fall. The trail is popular among hikers, equestrians, and mountain bikers on summer weekends, so watch for other users and take appropriate cautions.
Services: There is no water at the trailhead, and no potable water along the trail. Water is available at the Fairholm Campground, at the west end of Lake Crescent, and gas and groceries can be obtained at the Fairholm Store.
Hazards: The trail sports numerous tight switchbacks, both uphill and downhill. The trail on the north side of the ridge, especially, is uneven in spots, which combines with steep grades for some challenging riding. Watch your speed on the downhills—some of the switchbacks come upon you suddenly.
Rescue Index: Help can be flagged down on US 101, or from the phone at the Fairholm Store 4.7 miles from the trailhead.
Land Status: Olympic National Forest, Soleduck Ranger District.
Maps: The information board at the trailhead shows the loop, and maps are available at the trailhead. Although the loop is pretty straightforward, be prepared with your own map if there are none at the trailhead; get the Mt. Muller handout from the Soleduck Ranger District. The 1987 revision of the Olympic National Forest map did not denote the trail. The Custom Correct Lake Crescent-Happy Lake Ridge map shows all but the westernmost portion of the loop.
Source of Additional Information:
USFS Soleduck Ranger District
196281 US 101
Forks, WA 98331
View Trail Map
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication