12/30/12 - Gray Skies at the Ridge

We managed to do a little bit of snowshoeing up at Hurricane Ridge. We are seriously out of snowshoe shape. Still, the scenery was wonderful, and we have never seen so much snow on the trees.

Gray skies

A dash of light

Mixed skies

More snow and sky

The trail

First of a six photo panorama





Sixth and last

Keywords: hurricane ridge, snowshoeing, winter

04/20/12 - Hurricane Ridge Report

We recently were up at Hurricane Ridge to see if we could do some snowshoeing. There was lots of snow up there, but it had been melted and refrozen and compacted so many times that it was rough going. We had traction, but it was hard to take more than a few steps before breaking through the crust or having to climb up or down one of the folds in surface. We didn't get very far, but we enjoyed some great scenery.

Amazing views

There was a sign warning about snow sliding from the roof - and snow sliding from the roof.

More amazing views

There is still a lot of snow.

The hours for the lodge store - open May weekends, then every day starting Memorial Day weekend

Keywords: hurricane ridge, snowshoeing, winter

01/17/12 - Hurricane Ridge

Shortly before the recent storms, we drove up to Hurricane Ridge and did some snowshoeing. The snow was crunchy having been compacted, melted and refrozen, but it was easy enough going with our steel foot claws, our snowshoes.

It was a cloudy day, so we managed to capture some of the strange color that the mountain sky gets when the air is unsettled. It was a good workout, and, now that the storms have settled, we're hoping to get back up there.

Some of the strange sky

A bit of blue sky - There were colors for every mood.

The mountains and a pale gray sky

Vancouver Island across the strait

More strange and angry sky

Hurricane Hill in the distance

The trail itself

Keywords: hurricane hill, hurricane ridge, snowshoeing

03/06/10 - Snowshoeing Again

Now that the road is open again, we went up to Hurricane Ridge for some snowshoeing. The temperature was in the mid-40s, and the sun was shining brightly. The snow was a bit crunchy, but that's more a problem for skiers than snowshoers.

Of course, the parking lot was pretty full when we arrived before noon, but there were still a lot of spots. The little kids were all over the little sledding area at the west end of the lot, and the ski slope was full of skiers. It was great seeing so many people out and trudging around on the trail. We should add our thanks to the team that managed to get the road reopened before the snow melted. (That includes all you taxpayers out there.)

We weren't the only ones.

The mountains were as amazing as ever.

You can see the snow melt.

Keywords: hurricane ridge, snowshoeing, weather

01/20/10 - It Was Fun While It Lasted

These are some photos from our last snowshoeing trip up to Hurricane Ridge. As you may know, Hurricane Ridge Road is closed until early March, so this may have been our last snowshoeing trip of the season. We suppose it is a rule of the high country, carpe diem - seize the day.

Keywords: high country, hurricane ridge, snowshoeing

01/01/10 - Snowshoeing at Hurricane Ridge

Hurricane Ridge has been open for snowshoeing on its usual on and off schedule. We made it up there on Boxing Day, but we've been lazy about posting our photos. Our report:
  • The trail is great.
  • The scenery spectacular.
  • Come early or you might not get a parking spot.

Keywords: hurricane ridge, snowshoeing

02/20/09 - Quick Update On Hurricane Ridge

The mountains are still standing. They are still covered with snow, though the surface is packed and a bit slick for cross country skiiing. The road is clear but for a few stretches of well sanded ice. The sun still shines. We were up there snowshoeing on the trail from Hurricane Ridge to the Hurricane Hill trailhead. A lot of people were just hiking the trail in boots or hiking shoes. Did we mention that the mountains are still standing?

The mountains are still standing.

Keywords: hurricane hill, hurricane ridge, snowshoeing

12/16/08 - Snowshoeing the Lake Angeles Trail

The snows are back, so we've been snowshoeing the Lake Angeles Trail. To be honest, there were only a few inches of snow on the trail. Most of the people we met on the trail were just wearing boots, but we are never could get the hang of boots, so we snowshoe. In any case, the scenery was spectacular.

The little bridge over the stream

A glimpse of blue sky

The wooden walkway

Keywords: lake angeles, winter, snowshoeing

Not the best trail, but pretty good

05/18/08 - Last Days On Snowshoes

We were up on Hurricane Ridge for a last bit of snowshoeing. It was an amazingly warm day, even up over 5000 feet. People were out snowshoeing in shorts. On the other hand, the snow was still in pretty good shape, so we got a good workout. Needless to say, the scenery is spectacular.

Why we climb

The trail beckons

Keywords: snowshoeing

A beautiful day in Olympic National Park

01/22/08 - Hurricane Ridge Ski Area

We had a mixed Martin Luther King Day weekend up on Hurricane Ridge. On Sunday, high winds led to white out conditions, so they had to close the road. However, on Monday, the winds were quiet and the sun was out. It was a beautiful day for snowshoeing from Hurricane Ridge to the Hurricane Hill trailhead.

Keywords: hurricane ridge, winter, snowshoeing

05/03/07 - Still Snowshoeing at Hurricane Ridge

Did we mention that there is still snow on Hurricane Ridge? We were out snowshoeing. The snow is getting a bit crunchy, and the trail is pretty messy, since most people, less clumsy that we, are just wearing hiking shoes on the trail.

The road is still only open on weekends (call 360 565 3131), but the drive is worth it. It is still mighty pretty up there.

Keywords: high country, hurricane ridge, winter, snowshoeing

03/18/07 - Hurricane Hill Is Still Winter

We were up snowshoeing today at Hurricane Ridge. While it is starting to look like spring down here near sea level, up on Hurricane Hill Road it still looks like winter. It was well above freezing, but there were still about eight feet of snow. There is a bit of the road starting to peep through here at the hairpin turn, but we will not be holding our breath waiting for the glacier lilies.

Keywords: hurricane hill, high country, winter, hurricane ridge, spring, snowshoeing

When winter trees start to fall ...

01/13/07 - Lake Angeles Trail Report

We tried doing a little snowshoeing along the Lake Angeles Trail, but we were thwarted by fallen trees. We had to climb over a few trees to get to the first crossing. The little foot bridge was out, crushed by a couple of fallen logs. Luckily, the river is easy to ford here, and there were lots of broken logs and bits of the bridge to walk on, so we made our across the stream. Then we started to climb, and soon ran into another fallen tree. Then there was a clear patch, then another fallen tree, then clear, then tree, and so on.

It is rather awkward clambering over fallen trees of varying sizes in snowshoes. It isn't getting one's foot up that is the problem, but rather getting it down. The snowshoe tries to land toe first. After a few more trees, we gave up.

The Heather Park Trail was in better shape, but we soon came to a brook running down the middle of the trail. Rather than get out feet wet, we turned around here.

We clambered around a bit more, finding the little picnic area and foot bridge on the fire road that starts at the parking lot just after the park gate station. We had never explored there before, so we judged our venture a success.

Keywords: lake angeles, winter, snowshoeing

12/05/05 - What It's Like Out

Just a quick note on the outdoors on the Peninsula. We were up at Hurricane Ridge snowshoeing over the weekend, so we cxan report fairly good snow up in the hills, but the Lake Angeles trail is still best climbed from Heart of the Hills in hiking shoes, or boots. There is just not that much snow on the forest floor, even when there is snow by the road.

We were also out at Lake Crescent, and it looks like most, if not all, of the snow on the Spruce Railroad Trail has melted. There is still ice on the access road, so drive carefully.


Keywords: high country, winter, spruce railroad, hurricane ridge, lake angeles, lake crescent, snowshoeing

View From The Snowshoeing Trail - Hurricane Hill

11/26/05 - Hurricane Ridge Is Open

Last winter, we didn't get up to Hurricane Ridge very much. Either it was snowing, or it had stopped snowing, but the plow was broken, or all the snow had melted. This year, things we hope for better, and the season is already showing some promise. Today, the road was open, there was a nice coating of snow, and everyone seemed to be heading up to the Ridge to work off some Thanksgiving turkey.

We put on our snowshoes and hiked from the Hurricane Ridge lodge to the Hurricane Hill trailhead. We ran into others on snowshoes, cross country skiers, and a number of people just tromping along in boots. The sky was bright blue, with just a hint of cloud, and the air was wonderfully clear. This latter was an especial relief since we had been enduring a bit of fog and bad air of late.

The ski lift wasn't open yet, but there were lots of people with sleds, snowboards and even skis. Of course, they had to climb Sunrise Peak by foot without the lift. As for us, we came for the exercise.


Keywords: high country, winter, hurricane ridge, hurricane hill, snowshoeing, kale

No Snow on Hurricane HillNo Snow on the Switchback Trail

02/15/05 - Snowshoe Report From Hurricane Ridge, snowshoeing

We went snowshoeing on Hurricane Ridge a few days back, and we were rather amazed at the lack of snow. There was snow, but not all that much as you can see in these two photos. Just as a reminder, these were taken in February, not June.

The road to the Hurricane Hill trailhead did have snow, but the thick section near the start was deceptive. There were portions of the trail where it was easy to bottom out and poke at the asphalt of the road with our sticks. Still, the snow was white, and the scenery spectacular. If you don't have snowshoes or cross country skis, you can just hike if you have a good pair of shoes.

The picture on the right is of Hurricane Hill. Most of the snow seems to have melted! There are usually bits of snow hanging around until August. Unless the heavens open up, it looks like it will all be gone by May.

The picture on the left is of the Switchback Trail to Klahane Ridge as seen from the road to Hurricane Ridge. It looks like most o fhte snow has melted, but you can see the snow on the trail as the criss cross of white lines just above the center of the picture. Judging from the trailhead, it looks like you can just walk up to the ridge if you don't mind the occasional snow drift.

Keywords: winter, high country, hurricane hill, hurricane ridge, klahane ridge, snowshoeing

02/03/05 - One Weird Winter

This has been a weird winter. It just hasn't been snowing on the North Olympic Peninsula. This has been bad news for skiers and snowshoers, but it is great news for us hikers. For example, the Lake Angeles Trail is clear, no snow, no ice, all the way up to the lake. In fact, there is nothing blocking the route but a couple of downed trees that you can step right over. Up at the lake, the water is clear and the mountains majestic. You can even a little snow here and there.

Lake Angles - January 2005

Lake Angeles - January 2005
Lake Angeles - Wood and Water

Keywords: winter, high country, lake angeles, snowshoeing