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USA: Washington: Hurricane Ridge, Kalaloch Beach, Lake Quinault, Long Beach, Marymere Waterfall, Port Angeles, Puget Sound, Ruby Beach, Seattle
Hurricane Ridge, Washington, USA: Intense
by Prakash Bang, Editor in Chief
Hurricane Ridge is named for its intense gales and winds. The weather in the Olympic Mountains is unpredictable, and visitors should be prepared for snow at any time of year.
We were there in February and sure enough it was snow all around. Thankfully, we could make it up to the visitor center which otherwise would have been out of bound because of heavy snow that lashed the mountains in the preceding week. The roads were closed.
Hurricane Ridge is a mountainous area in Washington's Olympic National Park. It can be accessed by road from Port Angeles and is open to hiking, skiing, and snowboarding. Post breakfast, we left for the ridge from Port Angeles. We were atop the mountain's visitor center in about 60 minutes.
At an elevation of 5,242 feet Hurricane Ridge is a year-round destination. In summer, visitors come for views of the Olympic Mountains, as well as for superb hiking. During the winter months the small, family oriented Hurricane Ridge Ski and Snowboard Area offers lift-serviced downhill skiing and snowboarding. At the time of my visit, there were only a few people around enjoying their snowboarding and skiing. I had about 30 minutes on hand to soak in the beauty. Had it been sunny, I am sure it would have been a great photo opportunity.
The Hurricane Ridge viewpoint offers spectacular views. The road leading west from the Hurricane Ridge visitor center is dotted with picnic areas and trail heads. A paved trail called the Hurricane hill trail is popular with visitors, and is about 1.6 miles long with an elevation gain of about 700 feet. It is not uncommon to find snow on the trails even as late as July. Several other dirt trails of varying distances and difficulty levels branch off of the Hurricane hill trail.
At about 10 we were ready to leave the ridge to visit Lake Crescent.
Hurricane Ridge Image Gallery Photo viewer
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