Pony Bridge – 5.1mi / 8.2km
A wonderful stroll through a gorgeous rain forest takes you to Pony Bridge which spans a deep chasm over the Quinault River. After crossing the bridge high above the lovely Graves Creek you begin cruising on the wide path through the cathedral-like forest.
Immense trees, ferns, moss, and an abundance of fauna make for a mesmerizing wonderland. The trail is an old road that alternates from longer, moderate climbs and level sections until it reaches a dilapidated picnic table at the trail’s apex.
From there, the trail narrows to single-track and steeply descends into the canyon, giving you initial glimpses of the Quinault River. You arrive at Pony Bridge where the river crashes through the deep chasm below you. Numerous, small feeder streams create strings of cascades into the water. The river bends around the peninsula in a collection of rapids, bubbles, and pools as it makes its way into the next canyon.
Explore this area before heading back, or continue another 0.7mi/1.2km to where the trail meets a peaceful stretch of the river.
Trailhead: From Hwy 101, turn onto South Shore Road just south of Lake Quinault. Follow the road for 13 miles as it becomes Graves Creek Road. Follow that rough, gravel road for another 5.8 miles to the trailhead at the end of the road.
Elevation Gain: 1,050ft / 315m – Elevation Loss: 1,050ft / 315m