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Heart O' the Forest

Olympic Peninsula > Northern Coast
48.0350, -123.4245 Map & Directions
Length
4.8 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
500 feet
Highest Point
1900 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
Moderate

This trail is a really nice accompaniment to your morning coffee, but bring a thermos -- it's long enough that the coffee might get cold by the time you reach the end! Continue reading

  • Wildflowers/Meadows
  • Established campsites
  • Old growth
  • Good for kids
  • Dogs not allowed
  • Rivers

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

National Park Pass
Rating
3.00 out of 5

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Hiking Heart O' the Forest

This trail is a really nice accompaniment to your morning coffee, but bring a thermos -- it's long enough that the coffee might get cold by the time you reach the end!

Your hike begins from between the C and D Loops of the Heart O' the Hills campground. There's no parking at the trailhead, so unless you're staying in the campground, park in the large parking lot just south of the trailhead. Sometimes there are walking sticks leaning against the trailhead sign. Take one if you'd like to use it, but be sure to leave it for future visitors when you are done. 

The trail starts off wide, with a bridge over a very pretty little stream. For the first half mile, it's wide enough to easily accommodate two hikers side by side, but gradually it narrows as it continues into the heart of the forest. It meanders through this forest, populated by huge trees and a variety of flora. Fauna is a bit more scarce, but keep an eye out. Early in the morning especially, you may be lucky enough to chance upon a deer.

The trail is built in a damp area, so there are lots of puncheons and turnpikes. You can go as far along the trail as you want; there’s no big payoff waiting at the end, so if you’re satisfied after a half mile, rest and be satisfied. You’re only missing more of the same. If you do want to continue to the end though, you'll discover where the elevation gain comes from...it's all in the last mile, when the trail descends 500 feet into a creek valley and its end at a fallen tree. 

Though you will be able to hear the creek, it's hard to access it, and since the trail dead-ends at a private property boundary, just rest and enjoy the sounds of the creek before beginning the climb back. 

Hike Description Written by
Multiple authors contributed to this report, WTA Community

Heart O' the Forest

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 48.0350, -123.4245 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

See weather forecast

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

National Park Pass

WTA Pro Tip: Save a copy of our directions before you leave! App-based driving directions aren't always accurate and data connections may be unreliable as you drive to the trailhead.

Getting There

From Port Angeles leave US 101 near milepost 249, following Race Street south 1.2 miles to Hurricane Ridge Road (Heart o' the Hills Parkway) and passing the Olympic National Park Visitors Center and Wilderness Information Center. Proceed on Hurricane Ridge Road for 5 miles. Continue to the Heart O'The Hills camping area. The trail begins in the campground.

More Hike Details

Trailhead

Olympic Peninsula > Northern Coast

Olympic National Park

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Heart O' the Forest

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