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Old 11-19-2014, 04:18 PM   #1
Rob.G OP
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Olympic Nat'l Park over Thanksgiving? Good idea or Bad?

I'm off all next week due to work cutbacks, and have pretty much nothing to do. There's subfreezing conditions and snow in the Cascades to the east, and I'm tired of the Oregon coast. About the only place I haven't been is Olympic Nat'l Park. I'm wondering how dumb an idea it might be to try to do a ride up there next week? The tentative forecast looks like sun might be coming by Wednesday. Temps aren't as cold as I had figured, and I have a 0-deg sleeping bag and plenty of heated and waterproof riding gear.

The route I was thinking of was the dirt-oriented route proposed by somebody here a few months back (I'm sorry but right this minute I don't recall your username). I have the tracks for that route. Or, if it might be too muddy, I could just fall back and do all pavement. Not sure if that's worth it.

I'd like to get up to Hurricane Ridge as long as it's not snowy. But also, if there are low clouds and crappy visibility, what's the point?

So yeah, I dunno. Figured I'd post here and see what the general consensus was.

Thanks.

Rob
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Old 11-19-2014, 06:23 PM   #2
Ironwood
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It can be a dreary place in the winter. Sol Duc hot springs could be nice. You will have the Park to yourself mostly.
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Old 11-19-2014, 07:53 PM   #3
ClineDesign
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Check out the webcams at Hurricane Ridge.

http://www.nps.gov/olym/photosmultim...dge-webcam.htm

and the forecast:

http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick...5#.VG1XXIur8qY
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:56 PM   #4
Gregulator
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I'd give it a shot, worst case it's an adventure. Even on a day when it's cloudy you have a good chance of sunbreaks on the north side. I would look at forecasts for surrounding areas, more than the very tippy top (Hurricane Ridge) which is going to look a lot worse. Conditions right now are pretty decent, as it's been dry for more than a week. That's all going to change as it proceeds to rain for the next four days , but I wouldn't say boring pavement is the only alternative.

For example, from Hoodsport to Port Angeles: 101 is great along the Hood Canal up to Quilcene, then you can take excellent FS roads from there to Palo Alto Rd near Sequim. Take the dirty-words tour around Sequim (Schmuck, Woodcock, Wilcox, and Kitchen-Dick roads see here), then cross 101 and take Deer Park Rd to its end where you can walk a quarter mile to the top of Blue Mountain.
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Old 11-20-2014, 07:25 AM   #5
dammitdave
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More Dirt!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregulator View Post
I'd give it a shot, 101 is great along the Hood Canal up to Quilcene, then you can take excellent FS roads from there to Palo Alto Rd near Sequim. Take the dirty-words tour around Sequim (Schmuck, Woodcock, Wilcox, and Kitchen-Dick roads see here), then cross 101 and take Deer Park Rd to its end where you can walk a quarter mile to the top of Blue Mountain.
Good advice from Gregulator! If it doesn't snow(and it's not predicted) you can ride from Hoodsport to Pleasant Harbor on forest roads. 5 miles North on 101, pick up the Dosewallips Rd in Brinnon and follow 2610 over Rocky Brook Rd to 101 at Mt Walker. About 3miles on 101 and turn left on Penny Crk Rd to FR23 to FR27 and 28 to Palo Alto Rd. Left on Palo Alto Rd to Slab Camp Rd (2873?), right to Lost Mt Rd, Left on Larson, Right on Hooker, Left on Attaberry and follow it to the end and 101. Take that Dirty Word route to PA and Hurricane Ridge. When you're freezing come back down to the entrance and go West on Dawn Lk Rd, left on Black Diamond, right on the Elwah River Rd and you're back to 101. If it's cold, take the right at the East end of Lk Crescent and follow Piedmont Rd to 112. For dirt you can follow FR30(Bear Crk) South to 101 then take the 29 roads all the way to Forks. 112 Out to Saphho is a hoot but watch out for sand and gravel on the surface and broken pavement. Lots of GP wannabe's have taken an ambulance ride to the hospital in Forks. If you're new to the area the Griptwister cd is a worthwhile investment. Thirty-five bucks is pretty cheap compared to a short winter day lost to dead-ends and backtracking. My $.02 worth...Dave
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Old 11-20-2014, 08:19 AM   #6
HH
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Do it.
Lots of low elevation forest roads will be snow free.
plenty of places to explore and zero traffic this time of year.
skip camping and treat yourself to a cheap motel in PA
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Old 11-20-2014, 10:51 AM   #7
ClineDesign
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Check out the former upper Glines Canyon dam on the Elwha River. This is from the Whiskey Bend rd. turnoff:

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Old 11-20-2014, 11:25 AM   #8
mtbdemon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ClineDesign View Post
Check out the former upper Glines Canyon dam on the Elwha River. This is from the Whiskey Bend rd. turnoff:

I guess I could google it, but is the story with the dam? Why was it removed?
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Old 11-20-2014, 12:30 PM   #9
ClineDesign
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Two dams were removed to restore salmon runs. The dams were built in the early 1900's to provide power to wood mills in Port Angeles. They just opened the Gline's Canyon dam a couple of weeks ago to public viewing.
http://video-monitoring.com/construction/olympic/js.htm
http://www.nps.gov/olym/historycultu...a-overview.htm
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Old Yesterday, 09:45 PM   #10
SmokeRing
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I was going to advise against it

It rained pretty good last night, and this morning I could see new snow on the mountain below Hurricane Ridge, down to maybe 3000 feet. That's well above the forest roads, but they don't get any sun this time of year.

I rode home from Seattle to Port Angeles on Hwy 101 last Thursday afternoon and could see dense, wet clouds covering the Olympics most of the way. Occasionally the clouds would part to reveal a deep mist filled valley, where the forest roads are located. It did not look like someplace I'd want to be.

Mud is no worry, but you might end up riding inside a cloud all day. That's what I was planning to write this morning, but then the sun came out, there was blue sky, and it was over 50.

I took a short ride east from Port Angeles. NF-2870 to Dungeness Forks and then back to Hwy 101 on Palo Alto. The road was in excellent shape, temperatures were about 12 degrees cooler than near Hwy 101. It was just as enjoyable as riding in the summer.




This is a nice spot on the Dungeness River. The Dungeness Forks Campground is nearby off to the right (it's closed for the season).



Looking down the Dungeness River.



The river is very noisy here. There is always someone camped here in the summer. I didn't see another moving vehicle today.

Just a little bit of sun and this is very enjoyable route.
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Old Yesterday, 10:24 PM   #11
Lotus54
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The Ridge road was closed today, snow and icy conditons I believe (webcam display is having issues, but I think the cam is actually working, I'll check on it).

Loads of fun FS roads around, ride south of Blyn a lot- although mostly single track- there are lots of fun gravel roads also.
Out west of Lake Crescent some fun stuff also.

PN or email me if you want more info.

Mark
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