Blue Glacier via Hoh River Trail

1 review #265 hike out of 333 in
3.0 mi
1 hrs 3 min
2,395 ft
Elev Gain


This is a moderate one way trail in Olympic National Park.

This trail goes by Elk Lake Campground and Blue Glacier.

Sights to See

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    1 year, 5 months ago
    We were able to snag a pretty good itinerary with two nights at Elk Lake, so we were very excited for this one. We started off from the campground on Friday morning, which let us miss a lot of the day hiker traffic and get an early start for a 15+ mile day. It was beautiful in the forest and along the river, but a bit of a long hike no doubt. Elk Lake is a fine place to camp, but nothing special unfortunately. There isn't easy access to the lake and it wouldn't really be possible to fish (wish I had known that before bringing a pole!). The outlet steam is also pretty warm and murky, so we headed 1/3 mile down to trail to filter water from Martin Creek. That said, Elk Lake was a great basecamp for splitting up the trip! The hike up to the glacier from here gets quite steep, but the views improve steadily. Just before Glacier Meadows is an immense washout. You'll need to go down a long, steep ladder and rope over a 200-foot hillside, and it's not for the faint of heart! I imagine it'd be pretty hard with a full backpack, but plenty of people managed. Apart from this, the trail is in great shape. The final trip up to the glacier is pretty steep, but well worth it. I'd definitely recommend going to both the lateral and the terminal morraine. The lateral morraine is quite a bit more difficult but provides a better view of the glacier, so you'll probably want to do that one first. Our hike out was a bit of a slog as it got hot, and the trail was busy on a Sunday afternoon near the visitor center. Our feet were hurting pretty bad, so a dip in the ocean at Ruby Beach was welcomed.
    ★ ★ ★

Public Tracks

There are no published trips for this hike. There are 11 private trips.

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