Boats, music, vampires, art, brews, films and farms-something for everyone on the Olympic Peninsula in September!

While September is back-to-school month for the kids, for many adults it's a great time to get away and play. Autumn is the perfect time for a road trip to the Olympic Peninsula. Weekdays are less crowded, lodging more available, and weekends bustle with activities for the entire family. You'll find festivals and events to please every taste.
 
Days continue to be glorious as leaves begin to change into shades of amber, saffron and ruby while evenings turn crisp with a nip in the air. For many of us, this is a favorite time of the year on the Olympic Peninsula. There's still time for some great hiking, biking, kayaking and camping. Grab your gear, your family and friends, and come join us!


Marsha Massey, Executive Director
Olympic Peninsula Visitor Bureau
Check out what's happening on the Olympic Peninsula this month.
Request your Olympic Peninsula Travel Planner now.
Wooden Boat Festival © Mitchel Osborne Photography

September 6-8, Port Townsend

Celebrate tall ships, paddleboards, kayaks, tugboats and everything in between at North America's largest wooden boat festival - with demonstrations, presentations, plays, music, dancing and great food. It's a weekend of fun for all ages.
 
The festival features over 300 boats, 100 presenters from around the world sharing their adventures, talents and expertise on four indoor and four outdoor stages, plus 50 exhibitors and live music all weekend on the main stage. Find quaint bars, great food, and unbelievable scenery at this amazing festival on the Salish Sea.
September 6 and October 4

Bring your acoustic instrument and/or your voice and join the Sequim City Arts Advisory Commission from 5:30 - 7:30 pm for this informal gathering of music makers. Everyone will play from the same music and participants are welcome to bring paper copies of their favorite tunes to share with the group. Not a musician? No problem. Come by and enjoy the great music and community spirit. This is part of the First Friday Art Walk taking place throughout downtown Sequim.
An eager fan waiting to pick up her festival tickets, ready to start a fun, Twilight-filled weekend.  © Land's End Images

September 12-15

Forks will forever be the home of Twilight, so to celebrate the love story that started it all, join  fans from around the world as they gather to celebrate all things Twilight i n Forks. Enjoy parties, Twilight- themed events and reunite with friends, both old and new, who share a love of Twilight. The festival is held annually on the weekend closest to Bella's birthday, which is September 13.
 
Check out the FTF Collection which features screen-worn costumes and props used by actors in the Twilight Saga. With a blend of books, movies and unique Forks-centric pieces, the FTF Collection is located in the heart of downtown Forks, the town chosen by Stephenie Meyer as the home for her best-selling novels, at the Rainforest Arts Center and is open year-round.

September 14 from 9 am to 4 pm

This community-building "fun-raiser" takes place along a 61-mile stretch of the Strait of Juan de Fuca Scenic Byway on Hwy. 112. Community sites with multiple vendors will be set up at the Joyce Depot Museum, Clallam Bay Visitor Center and Neah Bay Village Market. Individual sales will be posted along Hwy. 112. Discover garage sale treasure, "nearly" antiques, collectibles, crafts, produce and delicious local baked goods, all while enjoying a delightful road trip and stunning views along this National Scenic Byway.

The festival includes an outdoor movie under the stars, Friday - Sunday, filmmaker storytelling panels, filmmaker's parade, the US Festival Premiere of The Bowmakers, special events, private parties, plus food and drink, including a Mediterranean Feast on Taylor Street, Friday at 4:30 pm. Check out the entire program and buy your pass online.

  
September 14-15

This annual event draws folks to the vibrant farming region of the Olympic Peninsula for farm tours, live music, educational demonstrations and kids' activities. Included in the weekend are 19 local farms which highlight food, fiber, cider, and oysters. The list of farms also includes yaks, alpacas, Arabian horses, winemakers, a meadery, seed production and much more.
© Lynnette Braillard
September 20-21, Port Angeles

Enjoy two days of fun and craft brews featuring dozens of Pacific Northwest craft breweries, wineries and cideries. There will be live concerts (check out the new acoustic stage!), art-in-the-making events and a family-friendly street fair with plenty of delicious food and drink. Purchase tickets in advance or at the festival. 
September 21

Join volunteers from around the world who will be cleaning beaches as part of International Coastal Cleanup. Last September, over 1 million people removed more than 23 million pounds of trash from over 25,000 miles of coast. This is your opportunity to join a greater global effort while helping our local waterways here in Washington.
 
The alliance of partners will be cleaning over 50 beaches along the entirety of Washington's Pacific Coast and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Invite your friends and family and make a weekend out of it. Carpool and enjoy one another's company. There are some awesome BBQs and special events being provided by partners in coastal communities that weekend.   
September 28, Port Angeles

Calling all athletes! The Big Hurt is a multi-sport race, that includes four legs: mountain biking, kayaking, road biking and a 10K run. Participants can do all four legs solo in the Iron Division or as a relay team. The finish line along the city's waterfront is a flurry of fun with a transition "party zone" where the four legs of the race all finish in one spot! Registration is still available.


For the latest updates on national forest alerts and conditions, visit the  Olympic National Forest website .

With the beginning of autumn, recreational activities are winding down in the Olympic National Forest, and that includes the closure of campgrounds:
  • Hood Canal Ranger District: all campgrounds close on September 15, except for Lena Lake, which is open year-round.  Coho and Satsop Campground closures are yet to be determined.
  • Pacific Ranger District: Gatton Creek and Falls Creek close October 1. Others to follow.
  • Falls View Campground: closed this season for hazard tree removal. Operation nearly complete; goal is to open the campground for the 2020 season. 
Mt. Ellinor trail system has reopened for hikers to enjoy, following mountain goat translocation. Stay up to date on closures and other information at Olympic National Forest Alerts & Notices.

Want to have more fun in your national forests? The Puget Sound Explorer Campaign encourages young explorers to visit as many participating locations as possible to earn rewards.  

nps logo

Hurricane Ridge and the Hoh Rain Forest continue to be popular spots to visit throughout the fall. Visitors are encouraged to plan ahead and consider arriving early or late in the day to avoid the heaviest congestion.
 
Lake Crescent-Highway 101 Project  -  The final year of the 3-year road rehabilitation project on Highway 101 is in its final phase. Roadwork resumes at Lake Crescent in mid-September. The work to restore the roadway width around milepost 229 will necessitate some four-hour delays from 9 am to 1 pm, Mondays through Thursdays. This work is currently expected to begin the week of September 9 or September 16 and last four to six weeks. Outside the four-hour delays, drivers should expect flaggers and delays for alternating single-lane traffic. Travelers to and from the western side of the peninsula can use State Route 112/113 as an alternate route during the delays. For traffic info in real-time check the WSDOT Traffic Alert website and the Olympic National Park Alerts & Conditions page.
 
Graves Creek Road Repairs Begin September 3 - Park road crews will begin repairs to three washouts on the Quinault Valley's Graves Creek Road on Tuesday, September 3. The Graves Creek Road sustained damage during the last two years of winter storms. While the Graves Creek Road is closed, there will be no vehicle access to the Graves Creek Trailhead and Graves Creek Campground.
 
During the repair period, there will be limited foot, bicycle and stock access, depending on the work underway. The entire repair project and closure to vehicles is anticipated to last four weeks, with the road scheduled to reopen to all access in early October. Before travelling, please check for detailed information.
 
Hurricane Hill Trail Rehab Project - The second of three seasons for the Hurricane Hill Trail Rehab Project is underway. The trail will be open on a rotating basis. Check here  for dates.
Dates for September:
Trail Closed
Trail Open
Mon. 8/5 - Sat. 8/31
Sun. 9/1 - Mon. 9/2
Tue. 9/3 - Thu. 9/12
Fri. 9/13 - Sun. 9/15
Mon. 9/16 - Thu. 9/26
Fri 9/27 - Sun. 9/29
 
The trails starting from the Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center are all open including Cirque Rim, Big Meadow, High Ridge and Klahhane Ridge.
 
Klahhane Ridge Trail
When planning a visit to Olympic, be sure to check out the Alerts & Conditions information on the park webpage at www.nps.gov/olym/planyourvisit/conditions.htm  and call the recorded Road & Weather line at 360-565-3131 (updated daily).
 
Something special for folks in the Tacoma/Puget Sound area: catch the park film "When Goats Fly" screening this month at the Anderson Island Film Festival . This 15-minute film takes you behind-the-scenes as a passionate group of scientists, students, and volunteers come together to capture, air-lift, and relocate non-native mountain goats from Olympic National Park to Washington's beautiful Cascade Mountains, bringing both of these ecosystems back into balance. The festival takes place September 13-15. Check here to  view a shorter version online about the mountain goat removal and translocation efforts between the Olympic and Cascade mountains.
Mark your calendar and save these dates for upcoming October events:

October 5-6: Neah Bay's Hobuck Hoedown Paddle Surf Festival

We look forward to welcoming you to the Olympic Peninsula!
Check out what's happening on the Olympic Peninsula this month.
Request your Olympic Peninsula Travel Planner now.
Olympic Peninsula Tourism Commission | 360-452-8552 info@olympicpeninsula.org | OlympicPeninsula.org