By Gary Huff
Eagle Peak, Obstruction Peak & Elk Mt: 100 % alpine. Trailhead: 6,150
Obstruction Peak: 6,450 elevation.Elevation gain: 300 ft. Distance: .5 mi. .5 hr. Enjoyment rating: 2
Eagle Peak: 6,247 elevation.Elevation gain: 250 ft. Distance: 1.5 mi. Time: 1 hr. Enjoyment rating: 3
Elk Mt. 6,773 elevation.Elevation gain: 650 ft. Distance: 4.4 mi. Time: 3 hrs. Enjoyment rating: 4+
Overview:All three of these peaks can easily be done in a one day, as a 5-6 hour hike or individually. I call them “and/or” hikes. Hike up Eagle Peak and/or Obstruction Peak and/or Elk Mountain. All are walk up peaks and provide a 100% alpine experience with great views of water and mountains. Obstruction Peak is a very short quarter mile hike to the top, Eagle Peak is a bit longer at .75 mi. and Elk Mt. 2.5 mi. to the top.
Getting to Eagle Peak:From hwy 101 in Port Angeles, take Race Street left toward Hurricane Ridge, 17 miles to the Hurricane Ridge Visitors Center. Take a hard left on Obstruction Point road at the beginning of the parking area. It is an 8 mile narrow, gravel road to Obstruction point. Eagle Peak is on the way to Obstruction Point, on the left, 6 miles on the road, at the snow depth poles. There is no sign here, but a trail goes off to the left that leads to Eagle. Parking for two cars is on the right. The trail leads through sub alpine fir and alpine meadows to the obvious peak.
Getting to Obstruction Peak:Follow the Obstruction Point road 8 miles to the parking lot. It is 2 miles beyond Eagle Peak. Obstruction peak is on the left from the end of the parking lot. Stay on rock scree as much as possible to protect vegetation.
Elk Mountain:The grand ridge trail to Elk Mountain begins at the end of the Obstruction Point parking lot. It is straight ahead and well signed. From the trailhead you can see the trail winding around the bowl and up to grand ridge. At .3 miles, pass the Badger Valley trail going down the valley. Then the trail climbs .5 mi. to the top of the ridge. Once on top, the trail follows the ridge all the way to Deer Park/Blue Mountain, 7.6 miles away. Because this is the highest trail in the Olympics, it is all open, rocky ridge country. It is almost barren except for small wildflowers such as phlox and sedge and a colony of Olympic Marmots. Finding Elk peak can be a bit tricky because of a couple of false peaks close to the same height. The real peak is on the left, just before you come to a junction sign with a trail running down toward Badger Valley, 2.1 miles from the trailhead. From the trail it is an easy 200 ft. walk through shale to the peak.
The Peaks:Views from all three peaks listed here are spectacular and dramatic. North is Port Angeles, the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Vancouver Island. East is Blue, Grand Ridge, Tyler, Baldy and Grey wolf Mountains. Southeast is Grand Valley, Grand Peak, The Needles, Mt. Deception and Mt. Cameron. Southwest is Mt. Olympus and Mt. Carrie. And west is Hurricane ridge and the Mt. Angeles massif. All around, 360 degrees of interesting country to study and enjoy.
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