Olympic National Park, WA

Beautiful Olympic National Park encompasses last wild coastal beach in the Continental USA, where wild sea lions frolic and enormous driftwood with Dali-like sea stacks are ubiquitous. You’ll then hike through old growth rain forest, and visit redolent fields of lupines on the way up the flanks of stupendous Mt. Olympus. You may encounter elk, deer, eagles, black bear, and marmots. You will also be able to feast on wild blueberries, blackberries, and salmonberries, huckleberries. At the end of the trip, you'll be able to cap this off with a soothing soak in Sol Duc hot springs.

As the Pacific Northwest Summer unfolds, it's prime time to visit, so why not join us to improve your fitness level and lose some weight (or more accurately, alter body composition)?

Itinerary

The Olympic Fitpacking Trip will be from June 30 - July 8, 2012. Here is the proposed itinerary.

Our trek will have 3 parts. We begin by visiting the Pacific Coast near Lake Ozette, where ancient petroglyphs have been carved into coastal rocks. After 2.5 days along the wild Pacific coastline, camping in designated coastal areas where we can watch the sun set over the Pacific Ocean, we'll head to the Hoh Rainforest, where we'll spend the next 3 nights, including a day hike up the flanks of Mt. Olympus (we won't summit ... it's too far, too high, and too technical, but the views will be amazing). Finally, we'll visit Sol-Duc Hot Springs for a well-deserved soak.

Difficulty

We have hand picked trails that are primarily level, with distances that are not overly aggressive in order to maximize beauty and lessen difficulty (hiking with a full pack on your back is always at least somewhat difficult). We have also sprinkled in some day-hiking so that one not need carry their full pack the entire week. Still, it's good to be aware of the fact that walking in sand or on wet tidal rocks (on our beach days) can pose challenges because it's difficult to get a good purchase on these surfaces.

Weather

Weather is always an important concern when hiking. Summer is the ideal time to hike in the Olympics. Expect daytime hiking temperatures into the 70s and nighttime temperatures in the 50s. Remember too that weather along the coast can vary greatly from weather in the rain forest. Here are the historical weather averages Be prepared with lots of sun and rain protection and water containers that add up to 5 liters of capacity.

Trip Leaders

Two of the following will guide this trip

Jesse Hardie is a Wilderness First Responder originally from Alpharetta, GA and has led Fatpacking trips to the Florida National Scenic Trail, Rocky Mountain National Park, Redwood National Park, Crater Lake National Park and Yosemite National Park.

Deb Lusk, lives in Phoenix, AZ and has hiked all over the Arizona Desert. She had guided Fatpacking trips to

  • White Mountain National Forest, NH
  • Four Peaks Wilderness, AZ
  • Gila National Forest, NM
  • Sedona, AZ
  • Shenandoah National Park, VA
  • Olympic National Park, WA
  • Isle Royale National Park, MI
  • Florida National Scenic Trail, FL
  • Appalachian Trail, CT
  • Yosemite National Park, CA

Deb is a WMI certified Wilderness First Responder and a Certified Food Handler.

Hannah McCallum lives in Chico, CA and is a Wilderness First Responder. She has guided Fatpacking trips to

  • Crater Lake National Park
  • Mt. Rushmore National Memorial
  • Mt. Rainier National Park
  • Redwood National Park

She's a huge optimist who is always ready with a wealth of camp activities.

Peter Hogg lives in Mukilteo, WA and is a WMI certified Wilderness EMT. He is a seasoned outdoorsman who is skilled in wilderness survival.

Equipment List

Here is a list of equipment we suggest you bring. The list is extensive and can seem daunting, but please don't let this deter you from the trip. You can rent top notch quality gear for reasonable prices from Lower Gear or Outdoors Geek. It may also be possible for us to provide some gear for you at a nominal fee if you let us know far ahead of the trip. Unfortunately, we're not in the gear business so the selection of our available inventory is unpredictable. Please feel free to discuss any gear with us before the trip.

Equipment Note

Olympic National Park requires backountry users [us] to carry Animal Resistant Food Containers (AFRCs) in order to ensure than animals don't get any of our food or other fragrant items (example). Although it's possible not everyone will be carrying one, please make sure to leave enough room for one in your pack.

Menus

We don't believe in austere eating regimens. Backpacking is a rigorous, rewarding activity. You must feed your body in order for it perform. Your body will dictate that you eat often, so it's important to have fuel to feed it. Please check out the sample menus. This list is not comprehensive and may be altered or augmented. If you want to bring personal food, say a 5 pound chocolate cake, go for it. You'll not only hate carrying it all trip long, your body will reject the empty calories and prefer nutritious food.

Cost

$1250 per person double occupancy. Here, double occupancy means that you will share a room with another participant during the 2 hotel nights. You will also be responsible for transportation to and from Fairchild International Airport (CLM) in Port Angeles, WA, personal equipment and any restaurant meals eaten off the trail.

Covered expenses include 2 hotel nights, campground fees, 7 days of trail meals, ground transportation to/from the parks, National Park permits, insurance, Hot Springs fees, satellite phone, and awesome guides.

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