<< Morse Creek West

12/12/23 - Elwha to Altair

With all the recent rain, we wanted to check out the Elwha River. Now that it's a naturally flowing river and has severed Olympic Hot Springs Road, it's worth keeping an eye on. We chose a lovely sunny day and set out. There was still morning mist here and there, and the river was running nicely. Even at the stretch across from the Madison Falls parking lot, It was out of its summer channel. The mules at the mule camp were long gone.

We headed on through the forest detour. We could see the river below, and we could see that the logs and snags of summer had been caught up in the increased flow. We didn't see a sign of the collapsing pavilion at the old Elwha campground.

We did see signs of snow on the hills around us, and we had a wonderful view of the river from the Altair Bridge. On our way back, there was another surprise. Something was thrashing about in one of the side creeks. We took a better look, and there was a salmon struggling upstream, well late to the party.

Morning mist

The Elwha


Along the trail

More winter forest

The Elwha below

Another bit of the river

From a lower vantage

Down by the water

A changed flow

Even the big logs had been moved

Seen along the way


Snow covered mountain

More snow on another mountain

Morning mist

View from the Altair Bridge

More along the trail

More snowy mountain

A late season salmon

Still thrashing about in the shallows

The road in winter

Some flowing water