Well, we finally have some semblance of nice weather, and we took advantage of it this weekend by going up to the Hurricane Ridge visitor center in Olympic National Park.
Before we moved here, my wife bought me a book, Best hikes with KIDS: Western Washington and Cascades. I've been drooling over it and wanting to try many of the hikes it describes. This was the first hike we've tried from this book. Each hike in the book has cute little icons to tell you the difficulty and seasonal availability of each hike. I didn't want to do anything too strenuous for our first hike of the summer, so I picked #163 Hurricane Hill. This hike has the easiest of the book's three difficulty ratings, and in the text it says,
Easy for children
2 1/2 miles
700 feet elevation gain
Overall, it was an enjoyable hike with spectacular scenery. However, it's a good thing I didn't try taking my family on any of the "moderate" difficulty hikes. This one was a challenge for my family.
The first time I visited Hurricane Ridge before my family moved here (pictured above), it was mid-June and there was still a substantial amount of snow up there. That time, I couldn't even drive past the visitor's center because of the rest of the road out to the Hurricane Hill trailhead was snowed-in.
Lotis at the Hurricane Hill trail head.
Do trusty, well-traveled stuffed animals count?
View from top of Hurricane Hill (5757 feet)
looking north to Port Angeles, WA.
My youngest son at the top of Hurricane Hill.
The view from the top was pretty amazing, and I'm very proud of my youngest son for making it all the way to the top with me.
1 hour 55 minutes moving time
30 minutes 6 second stopped / resting time
2.0 mph average speed
4.6 mph max speed
~900 feet of elevation gain. The parking lot is around 5000 feet, and the top of Hurricane Hill is 5757 feet, but there was a little bit of up and down along the way.
There were NO facilities available anywhere along the trail. There were outhouses back at the last picnic area before the trail head.