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Colonel Bob Trail is a 15.6 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Quinault, Washington that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October.

Length 15.6 mi Elevation gain 5,433 ft Route type Out & Back

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Forest

River

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

No dogs

Waypoints (0)
Facilities
Contact
Getting There

A federal Northwest Forest Pass is required to park here

Olympic National Forest Quilcene Ranger Station 295142 U.S. 101 South Quilcene, WA 98376 Tel: 360.765.2200

From Forks, south on U.S. 101 to South Shore Road. Turn left and drive 6 miles to the trailhead on the right side of the road.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (43)
Photos (65)
Recordings (30)
Completed (92)
Steve H
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jul 05 2020
HikingBlowdownBugsGreat!Over grown

Backpacked this trail on July 4-5. Amazing! Camped at moonshine flats (flat area between two peaks around mi 6.5). Set up camp and then summitted -- amazing experience at the top even if stuck mostly between clouds like I was. Definitely a tough hike as others say, a long climb with little rest on the way up and a slog of a downhill on the knees on the way back (don't forget the hiking poles)! Very overgrown in patches and a few tricky downed trees to navigate. You'll probably get wet from the overgrowth and a little scratched up so wearing some breathable pants might be a good idea. However, this roughness is concentrated in mileage 1.5 - 3 or so, so if you have a good attitude and good weather, definitely worth it to keep on trucking. Fair amount of mosquitoes particularly in the wet alpine meadows. Regular-enough water sources. Couple of muddy spots but not too bad. Summit feasible, only a couple of small snow patches. Lots to snack on the trail, including at least 5 types of berries (red huckle, black huckle {or was it blueberry?}, black, thimble, salmon)! Beautiful wildflowers, especially in the higher elevations with bear grass, columbine, avalanche lily, tiger lily, purple and white trilliums, bleeding heart, shooting stars, penstemon and more. Have fun! Afterwards, FYI in case news, don't miss the nearby largest Sitka Spruce in the world (apparently), chilling in or by the Upper Quinault river (the water is so clear!!), and checking out picturesque Merriman Falls just up the road. Thank you to the Quinault for stewarding this area for generations, and WTA more recently.

Alec Lynch
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jun 30 2020
HikingMuddyOver grownRocky
View Alec 's Recording
Rebecca Snell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun May 10 2020
HikingBridge outBugsSnow
View Rebecca's Recording
Jessica Cardone
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSun Mar 01 2020
HikingBlowdown
View Jessica's Recording
Joey A.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Feb 09 2020
Hiking

Did this on a sunny clear day. Rare here. Only had a few hours to kill so went up 3 miles from the trail head and turned around. Pretty consistent climb. Couple downed trees on the way but mostly easily climbed over. No snow. Couple play views but mostly covered the whole time. Plenty of amazing huge trees.

View Joey's Recording
Nicholas Brehm
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarThu Sep 19 2019
HikingOver grown
Sal Celis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Aug 16 2019
HikingOver grownRockyScramble
View Sal's Recording
Tiffany Rinke
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarThu Jul 04 2019
HikingOver grown

This was a great hike. I suggest if you have the time and the gear to make it a two or more day hike, a bit much to do all in one day. Lots of think your there but then not moments we loved it. Plan to get wet endless you have a warm 24 hrs prior to hike.

Juana S.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jan 15 2019
HikingOver grownRocky
Jeremy Bybee
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Sep 07 2018

Awesome backpacking trip with two night stay at the shelter and moonshine flats. Recommend taking the shorter route from Pete’s creek and spending two nights at moonshine. It’s an amazing base camp prior to making the peak run.

Allison Phelps
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jul 16 2018
Hiking

First things first, this is a 17 mile in and out hike, not 13. Multiple gps devices confirm this to be true. There is a shorter trail called Pete’s Creek Trail that will get you to the summit in half the time & effort. You do not need a pass for this hike. This is a steep trail. I would classify it as hard, not moderate. It starts in a lush rainforest thicket with copious amounts of shade, moss and the occasional massive tree. The trail increasingly becomes rough around the edges. This means: fallen trees, rocky & loose gravel and occasionally overgrown with berry bushes, ferns & other plants. You descend to a dry creek bed and then scale the side of a mountain only to descend the other side into into a lovely meadow full of wildflowers. After the meadow you begin your ascent to the summit. This is steep, often rocky and includes a stream with some campsites. The summit is stellar. 360 view that includes Quinault Lake, Mt. Rainier, & Mt. Olympus. The descent is a bit hard on the knees & feet.

CT Bucky
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Jun 29 2018

Great hike! Little much for a quick day trip I recommend you take Pete’s Creek if you want to save time. The campsites near the summit are awesome take advantage and make it a overnight. The Salmon Berries and nettles are thick right now but very little snow on the summit:).

Brandi Zieber
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Apr 20 2018

Loved this trail! I got 4.5 miles up today and was stopped by snow as I couldn't find the trail today. Definitely going back when the snow is melted!

Joshua Coberly
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon Sep 04 2017
Hiking

great hike. some parts of the trail are a little over grown but otherwise well maintained. signs are a little out dated and difficult to read and easy to bypass without notice. not a lot of traffic which is nice. fairly moderate trail until you reach the end which is well worth the last push. a ton of bugs up top and my girlfriend got eaten alive on the way down above all though that N.E.S.W. view is hard to beat at an elevation of almost 4500 feet.

Lenard Caputo
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue Aug 22 2017

Tough hike but the view makes it all worth it.

Derek Meer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun May 28 2017
Hiking

Started from the Pete's Creek trailhead. Once we made it to the snow level the trail wasn't marked well enough to continue. Sledding down the snow was fun though! Next time I come here I'll bring a GPS with the trail clearly marked :). Recommend coming in July

Jennifer Coffman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun May 24 2015
Hiking

The trail was harder than we thought it would be, but the view from the summit was fantastic. We took Pete's Creek trail up, and the Colonel Bob trail down. It made for a very long hike. It took us most of the day.

DANNY MEYER
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Oct 11 2014
Hiking

This is a very strenuous hike for an old geezer like me but well worth it. The views at the top are amazing. The best part was eating berries all the way to the top and back down yummy.

Aaron Kosydar
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSun Jun 29 2014
Camping

Steep but worth the climb. The "restoration" area left something to be desired. There are lots of fallen tree's across the trail that you must either go over or under. The Mulkey shelter is awesome but at night there are mice so be aware. The Pete's Creek Trail is the more popular/shorter way to the peak. We stayed at the Mulkey shelter for two nights and only saw one couple with their dog the whole time. After we were on the part of the trail that intersects the Pete's Creek Trail we saw maybe a dozen other hikers in various group sizes. We went in June and there was water at Mulkey Shelter as well as maybe a dozen small water sources, a pond, and one proper creek along the way to the top. I would have given this trail 5 stars but it needs some TLC to get back to it's fighting shape. Also you don't need any kind of pass at the trail head. You do however need one at the peaks creek trail head.

Roberta Harrison
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon May 26 2014
Hiking

Very steep and challenging hike. Views were awesome at the top.

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