Stay in a rainforest, see the Olympic Peninsula

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Experience camping in a quiet forested world alongside the Bogachiel River.  

Oct. 17, 2018

An hour from the northwestern-most point of the U.S. mainland, on the cool, green Olympic Peninsula, you’ll find Bogachiel State Park.

Set in a rainforest on the Bogachiel River, the park known to locals as “Bogie” makes a perfect base or midpoint from which to explore the Olympic Peninsula.

Take a leisurely walk on the park’s 1-mile trail through a dense conifer forest, keeping eyes and ears open for birds and wildlife. Follow that with a 20-minute drive to the start of a long, flat hike on the Bogachiel River Trail.

You may have traveled several hours to half a day to get here, so rest in your riverside campsite. Soak your feet in the glacial river, breathe in the evergreen scents and cook up a meal ‘round the campfire. Bogachiel has one of the best campgrounds in the area, especially if you have waterproof gear or an RV, and you don’t mind a little rain.

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The Bogachiel River offers prime wading in summer and Class-A stone skipping in all seasons. 

Curtains of moss

A mere 45 minutes from Bogie, the Hoh Rainforest is one of the world’s iconic lowland rainforests. Known for its vibrant greens, curtains of moss and old-growth canopy, this magical piece of Olympic National Park offers a day among the ferns and mushrooms. Stroll the mighty Hoh River, give elk herds the right of way and hope for Olympic mountain views.

Rugged coastline

Also 45 minutes from Bogachiel, Pacific Ocean beaches entice explorers of all ages. Check out the rock pillars at Ruby Beach, and nose around the tide pools on Rialto, Beach 2 and Beach 4. Enjoy dinner at the oceanfront Kalaloch Lodge or in Forks, where you can pick up “Twilight” souvenirs for the vampire fan in your life.

Cultural heritage

With Bogachiel as your hub, make the hour-long drive to Neah Bay and the Makah Indian Reservation at the northwestern tip of the U.S. mainland. Take a family-friendly hike to Cape Flattery for views of the wild shoreline, including Tatoosh Island and British Columbia across the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Stop at the Makah Museum to learn about the native people who have lived there for thousands of years and who continue to share their rich cultural traditions.

Road trip!

The northwestern Olympic Peninsula is a four-hour drive from Seattle, no matter which way you go, and longer from central and eastern Washington.

If you’re going by ferry from Seattle or Whidbey Island, don’t miss a side trip to Port Townsend and Fort Worden State Park or stops at Hurricane Ridge, Crescent Lake and Sol Duc Hot Springs.

Coming from the south, stop for lunch in the town of Montesano. (Have a picnic at Lake Sylvia State Park.) Take a side trip to Lake Quinault, and hit the beaches on the way up to Bogie.

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Kids, dogs, lovebirds and contemplative hikers all enjoy Bogachiel’s 1-mile trail in the rainforest along the river. 

Back at Bogie

Arriving at (or back at) Bogachiel, wind down with family, friends, your dog or your journal. You have now seen a part of the world that few will ever experience.

More information:

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It's pretty ... stinky! Skunk cabbage blooms in spring at Bogachiel and is memorable for its bright color and strong smell.


185983 Highway 101
Forks, WA 98331

Park information:
Call  (360) 374-6356 or visit Bogachiel State Park

Group accommodations
Call (360) 374-6356 for reservations

8 a.m. to dusk

The park is open year round for camping and day use. Some campsites are closed in winter.  All campsites are first come, first served.

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