If you are planning a trip to the Olympic Peninsula, you know that rain will most likely appear in the forecast. While you could happily spend the day curled up in your luxurious suite at Domaine Madeleine, why not make the most of your rainy day and explore the Olympic Rainforest? Here are some of the best spots to explore the Olympic Peninsula in the rain.
Toss on a raincoat and head to Lake Crescent for a day of rainforest explorations. While some of the more challenging hikes may turn into slippery, mud-filled adventures, the Ancient Groves Nature Trail is well traversed enough so you can keep your traction. This half-mile loop leads you through old growth forests that seem to illuminate the green hues of the plant life.
The rain may chase a lot of people indoors and that makes it the perfect time to head to Sol duc Hot Springs. Just up the road from Ancient Groves Nature Trail, you can unwind and relax in natural spring waters deep inside the evergreen forests after your hike. On a rainy day this luxurious resort turns into a magical landscape as the hot water turns to steam and creates an enchanting experience.
Near Sequim, the Dungeness Wildlife Refuge is a wonderful place to head on a rainy day. Search the tidal pools and hunt for seashells on the Dungeness Spit or simply walk along the pebbly beach. Something about the grey rain-filled clouds brings out the blue hues in the water and seems to make the evergreen pines stand out that much more.
Deep in the forest lies Madison Creek Falls, a magnificent waterfall that drops over 50 feet. A rainy day is the best time to visit these falls as they are swollen with the excess water from the storm. The mosses around the base seem greener, the ferns open up to their full beauty, and there will be fewer people out meaning you can capture the perfect picture for your photo album. You can also check out Striped Creek Falls nearby. Never heard of these falls? This local secret is a seasonal waterfall that only flows November-May and is most visible during and after a large rainstorm.
There is a chance that you’ll pop out above the rain clouds when you arrive at Hurricane Ridge and be able to gaze upon the mountain peaks of the Olympic Range. You may also be just as socked in up top as you are in the valleys, but it gives you a chance to check out the Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center. Inside you’ll find knowledgeable rangers who can teach you all about the area and even give you some insider tips. There is a 3D map of the range and exhibits on the unique mountain habitats, and you can learn all about the Olympic Range without getting a drop of rain on you.
It is almost always raining in the Hall of Mosses. That’s what keeps it so green and lush! Unlike the monsoon-type rain that dumps a couple inches in a matter of minutes, the rain around the Hoh Rainforest is more like a continual mist. The thick canopy works to absorb water and create a surprisingly dry (for the area at least) area that you can explore with ease. A cheap $1 poncho will be more than enough to keep you dry and exploring the area.
Don’t run and hide on a rainy day. Rainy days are the best chance to explore the rainforests with minimal crowds and offer the chance to take some of the most mystical misty photographs of the area. Throw on your raincoat, slip on your rain boots, and get ready to explore all the Olympic Peninsula has to offer.
Are you looking to tour the Olympic Peninsula in the rain? Visit Port Angeles and Book a stay at Domaine Madeleine, a refined Bed & Breakfast overlooking the Strait of Juan Fuca.
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