Information about this hike provided in partnership with Mountaineers Books.
Copyright © Dan A. Nelson/The Mountaineers Books
Klahhane Ridge Snowshoe
During warm summer months, the trail switchbacks back and forth steeply up this narrow drainage,
covering more than 1.6 miles before attending the ridge top. With a thick blanket of snow, however, snow¬shoers can kick step a more direct route to the top, cutting the climbing distance to about a mile. The downside is that though the route is just a mile long, it climbs more than 1400 feet in elevation. You can either gasp your way through a straight ascent, or sweat yourself through a more moderate-angled and less grueling, but longer, route up.
For the best views and clearest route, stay on the right flank of the creek basin and angle east toward the Klahhane Saddle. Once in the saddle, you can turn left and stomp through the wind-stacked snowdrifts along the ridge to the flank of Mount Angeles. Or, for a more leisurely and more scenic trek, turn right and stroll east along the ridge. Be aware that several sections of ridgeline can be heavily corniced--big overhanging drifts of snow--so you need to stay to the center of those sections to avoid collapsing a cornice and starting an avalanche.
From this open ridge, you can peer south across the Cox River valley to Hurricane Ridge. The rocky spire of Steeple Rock is due south, and the high summit of Obstruction Point anchors the east end of Hurricane Ridge. Follow the ridge east as far as you care to, then retrace your steps, taking care to descend slowly and carefully.
Author’s Rating: More Difficult
Some previous snowshoe experience helpful. Some winter survival skills recommended (basic knowledge of avalanche evaluation, emergency shelter construction, etc.). Elevation gain is usually less than 1000 feet with a gradual slope.
To get there, from Port Angeles drive 15 miles up Hurricane Ridge Road to the broad plowed area signed as the Third Peak Parking Area. (This parking lot is about 2.5 miles from Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center.) Hike about 0.25 mile up the road (heading toward Hurricane Ridge) to a hairpin turn in the road. The route begins in a creek basin on the north side of the road.
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Klahhane Ridge Snowshoe — Jan 19, 2010 — Susan Elderkin
Issues: Road to trailhead inaccessible
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The Hurricane Ridge Road has been closed indefinitely by a landslide. This hike is not accessible at...
The Hurricane Ridge Road has been closed indefinitely by a landslide. This hike is not accessible at this time and will likely be closed for 4-6 weeks. Check with Olympic National Park for details: http://www.nps.gov/olym/planyourvisit/current-closures.htm or call 360-565-3131 for up to date road and facility information.