dogs on leash
Situated on the Olympic Peninsula, this park ranges from Pacific shoreline with tide pools to temperate rainforests to Mount Olympus. The glaciated Olympic Mountains overlook the Hoh Rain Forest and Quinault Rain Forest, the wettest area of the continental United States.
This trail was absolutely stunning. I'm very much used to a drier climate being from Utah, so it was a pleasant and refreshing change from the norm of desert landscapes. We went in mid-November, and it was a clear day for the most part, but clouds would periodically pass overhead, and it drizzled on us several times. But we never got soaked. However, the air itself was very wet, and even though it was in the low 50s, by the end of the hike it had chilled me through to the bone. So be sure to dress appropriately depending on the forecast. Also, we had a fairly difficult time locating the trail head, as this NP does not have a park entrance (that we could see) or any park rangers. You do need to pay a fee to park at the limited space lot, which we were at the TOP lot (mid-trail). There is also a lower lot about 1 or 2 miles down. So make sure you take a map in case you have trouble locating it. We never made it all the way to the top, as we wanted to beat the setting sun. But the higher up we got, the more incredible the views. We definitely plan to do this trail again someday, from the lower lot. We will also give ourselves more time, because I stopped at nearly every view point to take pictures lol. Incredible place for sure!
Hiked in late November, trail conditions are still great. Nothing challenging, beautiful up at lower Lena. No snow at Lower Lena, but the snow line starts on the way up to Upper Lena. Road to the trailhead is paved and perfect. Bathrooms are closed up at the lake though~
Biked/scrambled/hiked to Lake Constance back at the end of July with my brother and dad (63 yo mountain man going strong)
We cut time on the first few miles by taking our bikes; be careful traversing across the road washout with them in hand.
I loved the ascent to the lake. The mix of hiking/scrambling made it rather enjoyable despite minimal viewpoints. The old growth forest along the stream is gorgeous and refreshing. We also cut off to the right at one point where the trail became a bit confusing to follow - look for the red metal markers on the trees - and scrambled up under a waterfall. Gorgeous!
The descent was a killer on the knees and required watching your feet, a bit slick with the dry dirt and rock the last 1/3rd.
Biking back to the car was a win. Less than 15 min!
Go explore, find how Constance is for yourselves :)