Geyser Valley Loop – 7.6mi / 12.2km
There are no geysers in this valley, but this stretch of the Elwha River delights with the many personalities of the river and some cultural history. The broad trail gently climbs through a forest of large trees and a wide variety of plant life. Views across the valley are sparse initially as you travel high above the river, but a great vantage is found by taking the overlook trail that drops off to the right.
From the overlook, continue back up onto the main trail until you come to the next signed junction. Stay right and drop down along the river, following it downstream to Goblin Gates. The river dramatically bubbles into aquamarine pools, then is squeezed through a narrow canyon.
Turn back and stay right at the next signed junction where you cruise through the bottom of the valley visiting the river before climbing up on a bench. Stay straight through all of the junctions with the exception of visiting the cabin at Humes Ranch. After touching a bit of history, drop down to the open, grassy meadow with its towering firs.
The trail wraps around to another junction. Take a right to cross a few creeks and travel along the cliffside for views looking out the valley. Drop down to the bridge in a tall canyon with the Elwha flowing beneath you. Turn around at the bridge and cross the creeks again, but stay right to take the Elwha Trail back to the trailhead, passing another historic cabin along the way.
Trailhead: Turn onto the Olympic Hot Springs Road from Hwy 101, 9 miles west of Port Angeles. After 4.1 miles take a left onto Whiskey Bend Road. Follow the road 4.1 miles to parking at the end of the road. Trail begins at the far end of the loop.
Elevation Gain: 1,200ft / 360m – Elevation Loss: 1,200ft / 360m