Pacific Northwest - Day 4 - Olympic Natl. Park - Mora Section, Hurricane Ridge

Olympic National Park Travel Blog

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Rialto Beach

Another full day for us to spend in Olympic National Park! We had actually planned this day in the Hurricane Ridge section, the most alpine part of the park. Unfortunately the weather was not too good today. We decided to first visit the Mora section, another beach part of the park. So, another day with multi visits.

1) Rialto Beach - Mora Section
See it here on the map. Rialto Beach is comparable to Ruby Beach which we visited two days ago. A broad beach with lots of thrift wood on the shore, and stacks in the water.
This time we had more time to actually hike the beach. So we made our way through the many trees washed ashore. The moisture being blown from the sea towards the shore was clearly visible.

Tidal Pools and their population
 We passed Split Rock, a small stack that is part time in the sea and part time on the shore and headed for Hole in the Wall, a hole in on of the rocks that are perpendicular to the beach, formed by the eroding forces of the sea. This area is full of tidal pools with all kinds of great sea creatures. We were lucky enough to have arrived at the moment right after low tide, the best (and safest) moment to visit the site. Some sections of the beach will flood completely during high tide.

2) Slough Trail - Mora Section
See it here on the map. A 2.5-km (1.5-mile) trail through more rainforest along the Quillayute River. Exact in the middle of the hike the rain, that was about to fall, fell indeed. Intense! We got the essence of a rain forest.

Hurricane Ridge
The rain ended of course by the time we got back to the car.

3) Hurricane Ridge Section
See it here on the map. Hurricane Ridge is the most northern section of Olympic National Park. Although the highest point of the park (Mount Olympus) is actually located near the Hoh Valley the Hurricane Ridge offers spectacular peaks up to 1598 meters (5242 feet) high. Unlike the Olympus it is accessible via a road.
Due to our trip to the Mora section we arrived rather late in the day in this area. Yet still in time to drive up the 33- kilometer (20-mile) long road that took us up more than 1500 meters (4921 ft) to near the summit. While we drove up the temperature went down, way down. At the visitor center at the top is was just 2° C (35 F). That was way colder than we expected. I quickly pulled out my raincoat to add at least another layer to my T-shirt, sweater, and summer coat. Despite the freezing winds we still did a 2.2-km (1.5-mile) hike to a nearby hill. There was still a lot of snow. I will have to go back here with higher temperatures and more time.

More pictures below.

alyssa_ob says:
Again, more spectacular photos! I love your gps/topo maps, too!
Posted on: Mar 03, 2015
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Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Tidal Pools and their population
Tidal Pools and their population
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Approaching Rialto Beach. Stacks i…
Approaching Rialto Beach. Stacks …
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
Tidal Pools and their population
Tidal Pools and their population
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
On top of Split Rock on Rialto Bea…
On top of Split Rock on Rialto Be…
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
Split Rock on Rialto Beach
Hole in the Wall on Rialto Beach
Hole in the Wall on Rialto Beach
Hole in the Wall on Rialto Beach
Hole in the Wall on Rialto Beach
This log has been bouncing against…
This log has been bouncing agains…
Tidal Pools and their population
Tidal Pools and their population
Tidal Pools and their population
Tidal Pools and their population
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Rialto Beach
Slough Trail
Slough Trail
The last section of the Slough Tra…
The last section of the Slough Tr…
On of the many official park entra…
On of the many official park entr…
Slough Trail
Slough Trail
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge
The hike on Rialto Beach in the Mo…
The hike on Rialto Beach in the M…
The Slough Trail hike in the Mora …
The Slough Trail hike in the Mora…
Mini hike on Hurricane Ridge (rend…
Mini hike on Hurricane Ridge (ren…
Driving from Hurricane Ridge Visit…
Driving from Hurricane Ridge Visi…
Elevation change while driving fro…
Elevation change while driving fr…
Olympic National Park
photo by: mucqui