March heralds the beginning of spring and with a snowy February behind us, we’re excited to welcome the new season with buds bursting forth and awakening to morning birdsong.

This month we’re also featuring the Lake Quinault area with its pristine waterfalls and endless natural wonders. In addition, it’s Spring Break for many and the Olympic Peninsula offers a world set apart from the busyness of student life.
Photo: Spring Fiddlehead Ferns in Olympic National Forest
THIS MONTH
  • An Insider’s View of the Olympic Peninsula – Rain Forest Waterfalls
  • Hiking the Quinault Rain Forest Trail
  • 10 Spring Break Ideas
  • Upcoming Spring Events
  • Olympic National Park 
AN INSIDER'S VIEW OF THE OLYMPIC PENINSULA
Quinault and Hoh Rain Forest Waterfalls
Willaby Creek Falls shimmering in the spring sunlight
After months of heavy precipitation from the Olympic Mountains and across the peninsula, snow run-off yields to spectacular waterfalls bursting at the seams as they gush down through rocks and trees en route to the sea with a little help from gravity.
 
The Olympic Peninsula has several dozen magnificent, magical, misty waterfalls. This month we’re featuring six of them—five in the Quinault Rain Forest and one in the Hoh Rain Forest. Why not plan to get outdoors and experience their breathtaking majesty. Feel the mist spray across your face, hear them roar as they crash into pools below and gawk at their resplendence. Here is a first-hand account in our newest blog.
 
If these six barely whet your appetite, there are many more for you to explore. LEARN MORE
A Million Shades of Green Greet You
on the Quinault Rain Forest Trail
Many who visit the Quinault Rain Forest regions of Olympic National Park and Forest say it feels prehistoric, but there is nothing outdated about the region. Here, where elk wander through chest-deep ferns and towering trees are weighed down with rain-saturated mosses, adventure and wilderness inspiration can be found around every corner. Full of pristine waterfalls, salmon- and trout-filled lakes and endless wonders, a trip to the Olympic Peninsula’s wettest regions rewards outdoor enthusiasts with a lifetime of experiences.
 
As you enter the rain forest, a million shades of green greet you, some bright from the daylight, others dark from the shade of the huge maple, cedar and fir trees. The Quinault combines rugged, wilderness beauty with a breathtaking lodge, a myriad of activities and some of the best hiking, kayaking and exploring in the world. Sure, it averages nearly 11 feet of rain a year, but that rain makes it beautiful, clean and ridiculously green. The Quinault Rain Forest is a wilderness playground of stunning sights and the perfect destination for your day, weekend or month-long getaway.
 
Excerpt from original story written by Douglas Scott of “GraysHarborTalk” for Grays Harbor County Tourism
 
For Quinault Rain Forest information, CLICK HERE. To get maps and a brochure of the Quinault area in Olympic National Park, CLICK HERE.
Photo: Quinault Rain Forest Trail by Douglas Scott
10 FUN SPRING BREAK IDEAS
Spring officially arrives on March 20 so why not celebrate the season with your kiddos and escape to the Olympic Peninsula for a COVID-smart Spring Break. School’s out for the week and it’s a perfect time for some fresh air and family bonding. Come for a few days or a week. Here are 10 things that will keep your family hopping. Mask up, stay safe and don’t forget to bring rain gear…just in case.
1. Winter Ice Village in Port Angeles
 
Lace up your skates and glide around the ice for a safe outdoor winter rink experience in Port Angeles from March 19 to April 18. You can bring your own skates or rent them there. Make reservations, which are recommended, at www.wintericevillage.org/hours-and-rates/.
 
2. Moments in Time Trail at Lake Crescent
 
This hike is an easy, self-guided nature trail loop spanning a mile along the shores of Lake Crescent and meandering through lush forests with interpretive signs giving the history of the area. LEARN MORE
 
3. Explore the Bunkers at Fort Worden in Port Townsend
 
Fort Worden was an active US Army base from 1902-1953. Hidden gun emplacements and batteries were built. Today, the extensive system of large, abandoned bunkers are open to the public—a special joy for kids who love to explore and hear their gleeful screams echo throughout the cavernous halls. LEARN MORE
 
4. Feiro Marine Life Center in Port Angeles
 
Get up close and personal with marine life and touch sea stars, hermit crabs, sea cucumbers and more in sea water-fed touch tanks. Learn about plankton at the microscope station and see a variety of fish and other animals you can find in the region. Reservations are required. LEARN MORE
 
5. Explore the tide pools at Salt Creek Recreation Area west of Port Angeles
 
This 196-acre park is known for its fascinating tide pools alive with colorful sea stars, shellfish, and other aquatic marine life. Hike the trails and marvel at the stunning views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. RV and tent camping are available. LEARN MORE
 
6. Cycle or walk the Olympic Discovery Trail and cross the Railroad Trestle Bridge in Sequim
 
Enjoy this beautifully groomed trail through Sequim and don’t miss going through Railroad Bridge Park, home of the Dungeness Audubon Center, then cross the 780-foot trestle with awe-inspiring views of the roaring waters below. LEARN MORE
 
7. Feed the Wildlife at Olympic Game Farm in Sequim
 
Buy bread when you check in then drive through the park where you’ll experience wildlife like bears, zebras, llamas, yaks, Roosevelt elk, bison and more. You’ll have the opportunity to feed many of them right from your vehicle! LEARN MORE
 
8. Hike Staircase at Olympic National Park west of Hoodsport
 
Located in the southeastern corner of Olympic National Park, the area boasts a vast cathedral of Douglas fir trees that hug the shoreline of the Skokomish River. It’s an easy, two-mile loop, stunningly beautiful hike. Note that the road, 16 miles west of Hoodsport, is unpaved and periodically closes in bad weather. Be sure to check the status of the road before heading out at or call 360.565.3131.
 
9. Visit the World’s Largest Sitka Spruce Tree near Lake Quinault
 
With a height of 191 feet and a circumference of 58 feet, 11 inches, the world’s largest Sitka Spruce tree can be found in the “Valley of the Rain Forest Giants” at Lake Quinault. It’s an easy .3-mile stroll from the trailhead on South Shore Drive. LEARN MORE
 
10. Every Kid Outdoors
 
If there is a fourth or fifth grader in your house, you can see America’s natural wonders and historic sites for free. Get your pass and plan your trip for exploring these places on the Olympic Peninsula at HERE.
For more inspiration, check out this segment from Emmy-winning Erik the Travel Guy which was filmed on the Olympic Peninsula in May 2019 (pre-pandemic).
UPCOMING SPRING EVENTS
Community and visitor well-being is of paramount importance. All listed events follow phase-appropriate Washington re-opening requirements. Conditions and operations change constantly, so check event websites for updates and specific protocols. Mask up. Keep your distance. Enjoy a safe visit.
PNW Extreme CX Challenge
Port Angeles, March 27
March Madness meets PNW Cyclocross in Port Angeles. Do you think you’re one of the best CX riders in the PNW? Prove it through this unique bracket-formatted event and be on of the first to experience a venue that’s assured to become a favorite. LEARN MORE
Port Townsend Farmers Market Opening Day
April 3
The market opens every Saturday through mid-December with health and safety plans similar to last year. Hours are 10 am to 2 pm with farm, food and art vendors. LEARN MORE

Photo courtesy J.C. Farmers Market
Olympic National Park Entrance Fee-Free Day
April 17
The National Park Service will waive all entrance fees on six days in 2021 when all sites that charge an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone. The additional entrance fee-free days are August 4, August 25, September 26 and November 11. LEARN MORE 
Run the Peninsula Race Series 
Sequim, April 24
The 2021 Run the Peninsula Race Series takes place on the beautiful Olympic Peninsula and is made up of five different races which can be run in person on race day or virtually until December 31. The Railroad Bridge Run offers a 5K and 10K out and back on the Olympic Discovery Trail. LEARN MORE
Gravel Unravel Bicycle Series - Hoh-ly Roller
Hoh River, May 1
A new endurance bicycle event series on the gravel road systems of the Olympic Peninsula. This first event starts and ends at the Hoh River, near Forks. Challenge your physical abilities to the max while you enjoy the lushness of the Olympic National Forest. LEARN MORE
Soroptimist Virtual Garden Show
Sequim, May 1-31
What would have been their 23rd Annual Gala Garden Show has morphed into a Virtual Garden Show due to the pandemic. Webinars will be offered via Zoom with vendors and sponsors showcased on the website and Facebook. LEARN MORE

Featured artwork: 
Come Sit With Me, by Jolene Sanborn
Watercolor, 22 x 15
OLYMPIC NATIONAL PARK
With an incredible winter snowpack, you can still enjoy a variety of winter activities at Hurricane Ridge this month. The Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center remains closed. The exhibit space, tables, and warming area are closed. Be prepared to use your vehicle as a warming area and pack extra food, water, dry clothing, and blankets and/or sleeping bags in your vehicle. Restroom facilities are open. LEARN MORE
 
The road to Hurricane Ridge is scheduled to be open Fridays through Sundays through March 28. When planning a visit to Hurricane Ridge, check the park website above for updates and changes to winter operations.
 
We encourage you to #RecreateResponsibly and know before you go by checking out the latest information. Bring the family for Skiing, Snowboarding, Snowshoeing and Tubing at the Hurricane Ridge Winter Sports Club (Saturdays and Sundays). LEARN MORE
Plan your next trip to the Olympic Peninsula this winter and for year-round activities by downloading or requesting your
Spring inspires us to want to travel, to get away and play. When you feel comfortable and ready to do so, come and discover a new place or visit an old favorite. Explore our trails and beaches. Try your hand at salmon fishing. Play in our spectacular parks, not to mention the show-stopper of them all—Olympic National Park, where you can even go snowshoeing.
 
As you begin to dream about and plan your visit, whenever it’s right for you, we encourage you to know before you go. Check our website for the most current information about safe travel. If we can assist you with your travel planning, please contact us directly. We look forward to seeing you on the Olympic Peninsula whenever you’re ready to visit.
We look forward to welcoming you to the Olympic Peninsula!
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