Named "the land of sparkling water" by the Quileute Tribe, Sol Duc Falls and Hot Springs is a place good for the body and soul. Whether soaking in the beauty the area offers or soaking in the healing powers of Sol Duc's Hot Springs, this spot offers a variety of outdoor activities.
Located about an hour west of Port Angeles, Washington on US Hwy 101, this secluded valley getaway boasts old growth forests, mineral springs, hiking, camping, massage therapy, kayaking, birding ... scores of ways to melt away life's little tensions!
Hiking. You can hike all the way to the top to view Sol Duc Falls, for a truly memorable experience, enjoying the old growth forest on the way. Lover's Lane Trail, in a six mile loop, follows the Sol Duc River to a scenic set of three falls and countless small pools. Accessible for youngsters and oldsters alike, the trail has very little elevation change for most of the route. For those needing more accessibility, a short (.1 mile) crushed rock and dirt path leads from Sol Duc Road to a wooden platform overlooking views of the Sol Duc River and small Salmon Cascades. Leaping salmon can often be seen here in late summer, when the river supports an unusual stock of coho salmon that begin their return from the Pacific (rather than in the fall, as is normal.)
For a better view, more able-bodied hikers can follow the path to the left of the platform where three separate falls are viewable. The water roars furiously down through a deep canyon, sparking misty rainbows but watch your step on the wood bridges that line the trail; the combination of mist and moss can make the wood slick!
Other day hike possibilities include Mink Lake Trail, which begins at the Sol Duc Resort and climbs 1400 feet in 2.5 miles through dense forest to the lake, where this is ample trout fishing; and Ancient Groves Nature Trail, a one-half mile loop through old growth forest and connects two roadside turnouts.
Soaking. Just as memorable is to head straight for the Sol Duc Hot Springs and soak away the day's workout til dinner time. The concession-operated Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort and Lodge not only provides soothing mineral hot pools for soaking but a variety of food service options including the Poolside Deli, The Springs Restaurant and an Expresso Hut.
Lodging and camping. Located within the Olympic National Park, Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort features an RV Park with 17 RV sites that offer water and electric hookups (no tenting.) It is located in a peaceful, secluded setting conveniently close to Sol Duc's pools, dining and shopping. The great outdoors is yours, along with cozy cabins, a cafe and restaurant, a gift shop, grocery store and other amenities in the heart of Washington's Olympic National Park.
Park-operated Sol Duc Campground, located along the Sol Duc River, with some riverside damp sites, is open year round, but with no water and only pit toilets in winter months.
Getting there. From Port Angeles, travel 28 miles west on US Hwy 101 to Sol Duc River Road. Turn left and follow the signs into the Park, approximately eight miles to the Cascade parking area. Please note: the Sol Duc River Road may be closed in winter due to low-elevation snowfall.
Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort 360-327-3583 (closed in winter)
Eagle Ranger Station 360-327-3534 (open seasonally)
Olympic National Park Visitor Center 360-565-3130
Recorded road and weather information 360-565-3131