Olympic National Park is home to multiple ecosystems, giving you a variety of areas to visit, such as coastline, forests, lakes, and glacier-capped mountains. The diverse landscape means there are numerous activities to occupy yourself with during your visit to Olympic National Park.
1. Skiing and Snowboarding at Hurricane Ridge
Hit the slopes at Hurricane Ridge.
If you’re looking for snow sports in Olympic National Park, the go-to place is Hurricane Ridge. Open from December 6 to March 27 and weather permitting, this is the all-in-one stop for winter sports. Spend the day skiing or snowboarding and taking in the snowy peaks and picturesque vistas.
From bunny slopes to freestyle terrain, Hurricane Ridge has slopes for skill levels. New to skiing, though? No problem, book a private ski lesson. Group ski lessons currently are not available due to COVID-19 restrictions. Before setting off, be sure to check the open and closed status of the visitor center and roads. If the visitors center or restaurants are closed, be sure to pack extra snacks and water to refuel between runs.
2. Hiking Olympic
The magical-looking forests with skyscraping trees makes a hike in Olympic National Park an adventure for all.
One of the best ways to explore Olympic National Park is on foot. Luckily, there are tons of hiking trails throughout the park and surrounding area. Even during the winter, you can find lots of lovely hikes. Surrounding Lake Quinault Lodge you’ll find 8 miles of interconnected hiking trails. With trails as short as half a mile, you can customize the strenuousness of your hike to be what’s right for you.
A popular hike in the area is the Lover’s Lane Loop, located in the back of the Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort, clocking in around 6-miles roundtrip. Several trails around Lake Crescent Lodge will take you into the mountains or into the lowland forests.
Bear Medicine snowshoe lamp in a Roosevelt Cabin.
For the slightly less adventuresome winter traveler, there’s a way to get out and about in the snow without strapping on either a board or skis — snowshoes! Many different areas are perfect for snowshoeing, from level meadows to wild backcountry terrain.
4. Winter Beach Trip
Kalaloch is the Quinault term for “a good place to land”.
Kalaloch Beach is a quick 40-minute drive from Lake Quinault Lodge if you’re looking to adventure out for a quick day trip. A beach day during the winter is not typically on a winter trip list, but this gorgeous shoreline is worth a visit. Be prepared for the perfect Instagram photo-op with the spectacular views and indelible sunset. Kalaloch Beach is also home to some amazing wildlife, such as gray whales, sea lions, bald eagles, and brown pelicans, to name a few.
5. Lodge Getaway
Lake Quinault Lodge was built in 1926 and designed by architect Robert Reamer, known for other notable buildings such as Old Faithful Inn and stunning Mount Baker Theatre.
There’s nothing better during the winter than a classic, charming lodge. If you want the quintessential national park in the winter experience, book your stay at the Lake Quinault Lodge. The lodge offers lake views, a fireplace, and access to plenty of local adventures. While some activities are closed because of COVID-19, the hotel, guest rooms, and restaurant offer a safe getaway for visitors.
Explore the Olympic Peninsula This Winter
Olympic National Park is a great destination for a winter getaway because it offers more than just snow-related activities (which of course, are a blast!). Head northwest this winter and explore every winter recreation activity that the Olympic Peninsula has to offer.