Staircase Rapids Loop – 2.2mi / 3.5km
This forested loop travels along the playful rapids of the North Fork Skokomish River. To do the loop counter-clockwise, cross the bridge over the river and enter the forest on a broad, level path.
Large trees tower over you in this wonderful forest. A short spur trail leads to a large, fallen cedar that shows its incredible root system. The trail continues on, joining alongside the river. As the trail moderately climbs upstream, numerous sections of the river delightfully splash over large boulders giving the rapids their name.
At the top of the loop, stay right and cross over the river on the large footbridge. After exploring the wide banks of the river, continue to the North Fork Skokomish Trail junction. Head right on the trail (an old road) that takes you through more mossy forest and across chattering streams to the trailhead just uphill from the ranger station.
Trailhead: From Hoodsport, take Hwy 119 towards Cushman-Staircase Recreation Area. Follow the signs all the way to the ranger station in the national park. Trail starts just across the gated bridge over the river.
Elevation Gain: 150ft / 45m – Elevation Loss: 150ft / 45m