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Olympic Discovery Trail

Summary

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Decades in the making, the Olympic Discovery Trail follows an old rail line on the Olympic peninsula. No logging trucks! Our tour covers about 100 miles on this mostly paved trail with the snowcapped Olympic Mountain Range to one side and the Strait of Juan de Fuca on the other. Enjoy steller views from the waterfront Inns every night but one. We begin at Lake Quinault and head north and east around the peninsula, stopping at Kalaloch, Ruby Beach, the Hoh Rainforest, Forks, Lake Crescent, and Port Angeles before we hit the high point of the tour at Hurricane ridge. We also get off our bikes to take a closer look at things, hiking in ancient forest, on beaches, and through sub-alpine meadows. Stay at two National Park lodges on the water. Finish the week with a coastel bike ride and beautiful ferry ride straight into the heart of the Seattle waterfront

Recreational, Road bike
6 days
238 km / 148 mi
$ 3,714.-
  • Olympic National Park
  • Lake Crescent
  • Hoh Rainforest
  • Hurricane Ridge
  • Deposit for this tour is 25%

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Details

Type
Recreational, Road bike
Duration
6 days
Level
Easy = untrained, normal physical condition
Moderate = regular cyclist, good condition
Challenging = experienced, well trained
Easy
Support
Guided = with cycling guide(s) - support van
Self Guided = individual - directions+maps
Guided
Daily distance
40-60 km / 25-37 mi
Total distance
238 km / 148 mi
Lodging
Deluxe = 4-5 star hotel or excellent B&B
Basic = 1-2 star hotel/motel or B&B
Camping = tent, sports hall or campus
Deluxe, full board
Luggage transport
Daily luggage transfers
Bicycle
Included
Dates
09 Jul 2023 - 14 Jul 2023
16 Jul 2023 - 21 Jul 2023
23 Jul 2023 - 28 Jul 2023
27 Aug 2023 - 01 Sep 2023
Start
Seattle
Finish
Seattle
Airport at start
Seattle-Tacoma International Airport
Airport at finish
Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

Prices *Please note the prices are subject to change depending availability*

Price per person / please note the prices are subject to change depending availability
The tour price per person
$ 3,714.-
E- Bike
E-bike Fastroad E+ EX Pro or E-bike THRIVE E+ EX Pro
$ 200.-
Optional
Single supplement
If you travel alone a single supplement is charged. With some group tours you can avoid a single supplement by sharing a room with another rider.
$ 1,003.-

Itinerary

Included / Not Included – lodging


Day 1: hike through ancient forest at Lake Quinault and explore the beach at Kalaloch.

To the Northwest Coast natives, Quinault means “river with a lake in the middle.” It is the name of the land, the lake, and the tribe who lives here. The Quinault River basin famously holds six different species of record-sized trees. It’s a bit of a drive (~2.5hrs) from Seattle, but don’t worry, you will be craning your neck to catch a glimpse of the tops of the “Big Trees” before you get out of the van! Explore the network of trails along the lake this afternoon to see some of the largest western red cedar, Sitka spruce, western hemlock, and Douglas fir trees on the planet. Sample a dozen or more varieties of native berries depending on the season. From Quinault we drive another half-hour to Kalaloch on the Pacific Coast.
Kalaloch means “a good place to land” and we think you will agree. In sharp contrast to the soaring inland forests, forbidding-looking tangles of gnarled spruce and wind-whipped shore pines line the coastal beaches. Take a walk on the beach, keeping an eye out for scurrying shore birds, surf-riding scoters, playful otters and soaring bald eagles. In the evening, the garnet-tinged sands and offshore haystacks of Ruby Beach form a photo-perfect sunset backdrop. Spend the night overlooking the beach at Kalaloch National Park Lodge.
Meals: L D Distance: 3-4 miles trail hiking plus a few miles on the beach, elevation less than 500 ft

Day 2: hike the Hoh Rainforest’s legendary hall of mosses and the Hoh River Trail!

Hike in the most famous rainforest in the park! Cited as being one of the quietest places on earth, Hoh means “whitewater,” an apt description for this boulder-strewn, braided ribbon of a river flowing from Blue Glacier on Mt Olympus – the lowest glacier in the lower-48 states. Begin at the Visitor’s Center on the Hall of Mosses Nature Trail and continue up the Hoh River Trail to Mount Tom Creek for lunch by the river. With any luck, we will track down an elk herd along the way, but regardless: colonnades of spruce stretch toward the sky, big leaf maples spread out over fern meadows, and lichens and mosses run wall to wall and floor to ceiling. There is more biomass here per acre than anywhere else on the planet! In this valley, you will inevitably run out of different ways to describe “green”. Spend the night in Forks, WA – once the logging capitol of the Olympic Peninsula, now famous as the setting for the “Twilight” teen vampire series. With a population of less than 4000 souls (werewolves and vampires are not counted), it’s still the “big city” on the peninsula’s remote westside. Stay at Pacific Inn Motel.
Meals: B L D distance: 10 miles, elevation less than 500 ft

Day 3: Saddle up the bikes and set out on the Olympic Discovery Trail. Ride the Spruce Railroad grade following the shores of Lake Crescent.
Today, after a short van shuttle (or optional 12-mile morning bike ride along Highway 101), we begin cycling east on the Olympic Discovery Trail. Beyond the dense forests, glacial-carved Lake Crescent makes a magnificent backdrop for much of the ride today. The clear, cold waters (you can see up to 60 feet down), and stunning depth (over 600 feet!) give the lake it’s blue-green color. Two species of trout found nowhere else in the world also call it home. We spend tonight on the shores of this gem at historic Lake Crescent National Park Lodge. At sunset, the lakeside setting is perfect for a stroll or a glass of wine. Once you’ve settled in at the lodge, don’t miss taking the relatively easy (~2.5 mi.) hike to cascading Marymere Falls. It’s hard to say which is more spectacular – the waterfall or the old growth forest. You decide. This walk is so lovely you may want to make time to do it again before breakfast in the morning!
Meals: B, L, D 2 – distance: 34 miles (up to 46 mi) Elevation + 1614 ft / -1298 ft Lodging: Lake Crescent Lodge

Day 4: Continue on the Discovery Trail from Lake Crescent along the Strait of Juan de Fuca to Port Angeles.

Rejoin the Olympic Discovery Trail where we left off yesterday and continue riding east toward Port Angeles along the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Begin with a descent from Lake Crescent to sea level and savor dramatic coastal vistas at Salt Creek. Cross the recently unfettered Elwha River – the site of the largest on-going dam removal project in the world. Pedal into Port Angeles (pop. 20,000), the biggest city and the busiest port on the peninsula. Ride out Ediz Hook for a beautiful view of town with the snow-capped mountains as a backdrop before you make your way to the waterfront Red Lion Hotel, our lodging for the next two nights. Dinner is on your own tonight.
Meals: B L Distance: 34 miles, elevation +1581 ft / 2341 ft

Day 5: Spend the day in subalpine glory at Hurricane Ridge. Enjoy views of the Olympics and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Hike, Ride, or both

Today we ascend to Hurricane Ridge, the literal high-point of the tour. As its name suggests, wind truly shapes this land, gusting to over 70 mph, with snows 30-35 feet deep in the winter. Go for a hike through alpine meadows and tree islands, dodging black-tailed deer and Olympic marmots – an endemic and adorable species of giant ground squirrel. Revel in a panorama of sweeping views of the Olympic Mountains, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and Vancouver Island. Enjoy lunch with a view near the Visitor’s Center.
If you prefer, you can challenge your legs by riding your bike to the Ridge instead of taking the van. The overall 5% grade of this climb, ascending one vertical-mile in 20 miles, is relatively steady, making it somewhat easier than the statistics might suggest. If you choose to ride, there will still be time to enjoy a hike before we return to Port Angeles for a celebratory dinner at our favorite local restaurant.
[Special Note: The National Park Service does not allow commercial tours to ride down from Hurricane Ridge.]
Meals: B L D 4 - 8 miles with hills. Ridge elevation is 5200 – 5600 ft lodging: Red Lion Inn

Day 6: Ride the Olympic Discovery trail from Port angeles to Sequim Bay. Cross Pudget Sound on an afternoon ferry back to Seattle.

Ride the Discovery Trail right out the front door of our hotel this morning. Continue east through forests dotted with farmlands to the small town of Sequim (pronounced “skwim”), the rain-shadow retirement capital of the peninsula and home to Western Washington’s only native cactus – the brittle prickly pear. While not quite a “desert,” less than 30 inches of rain fall here per year, compared to nearly 200 inches just 40 miles away at the Hoh! The area is renowned for its lavender festivals as well as the world’s first interactive elk-crossing. The female herd-leaders have been fitted with collars which set-off warning signals on the highway when they are in the area. Continue to Blyn for lunch before we load up bikes. Shuttle to Bainbridge Island where we catch a ferry into downtown Seattle – the perfect end to a perfect week!
Meals: B L 26 miles (or more)elevation +1146 ft / -1146 ft

* This is a general itinerary. Tour itineraries are subject to change based on the group, available accommodations and other unforeseen circumstances such as the weather, local conditions, government intervention, that may affect the quality of the trip and/or safety of the participants. Please view this itinerary as an outline as to what to expect on this tour.

Included:

First-class lodging and dining.
All breakfasts, except 1 lunch and 1 dinner
Road /hybrid bike, (E-bike rent possible)
Luggage transfer.

Not included:

Night before and after the tour.
Flights to and from the tour
Gratuities guides

Lodging

Kalaloch National Park Lodge
Pacific Inn Motel
Lake Crescent lodge
Red Lion Inn
The hotels, Inns, and B&Bs we use are always among the finest the area has to offer. Our smaller group sizes(max. 13) allow us to stay at some award-winning places that can’t handle groups of 25 or more. We work closely with the innkeepers to make sure they understand your needs and ours, whether that is having a place to store your bike, an early morning breakfast or a convenient place to park the van, they are as committed to your vacation experience as we are.
Lodging is based upon two people to a room with a private bath. If you’re traveling solo on any of our trips, we’ll assign you a roommate of the same gender and often of the same age bracket. There is no extra charge if we can’t find you a roommate, even if you sign up the day before the trip starts. You can guarantee yourself a private room and bath if you pay the Single Room Fee. Occasionally a room with two beds consists of one bed plus a rollaway bed or sofa bed.

Vaccine or test: A negative Covid test will be required within 72 hours of departure for all non-fully vaccinated guests. or Proof of a completed Covid vaccination course can be used in lieu of a Covid test. A "completed Covid vaccination course" means that the guest has had 1 or 2 shots (depending on vaccine brand) and has completed the 2-week waiting period post final shot.
All of our guides are fully vaccinated.

Map & Routes

Map
Satellite

Bicycle

A road or Hybrid bike is included in the price,
E-bikes
are available for an extra fee.
Prior to your bike tour, we request your height in order to choose the right frame size for you. (If you have a fit sheet or sizing information on your personal bicycle, you are welcome to send that to us, and we will do our best to match your geometry and specs.) On the first day of each bicycle tour, your guides tweak your bike fit to make sure you are as comfortable as possible. If they can’t get the fit just right, we typically carry a couple of extra sizes. We try to make sure we have the right size and type of bike you need to enjoy your cycling vacation.

Giant Defy ADV 3

Choose the longer route. Climb higher mountains. This all-new endurance road bike is purpose-built to help you tackle long-distance road rides in all types of conditions. It’s smooth, it’s efficient, and it’s fast.
Ride farther and faster with an all-new composite frameset that’s engineered with endurance geometry and built-in compliance. Handcrafted with Advanced-grade composite material, it’s engineered with tube shapes that are optimized to absorb road shocks and vibrations. And the frame is still stiff in all the ways that matter—for pedaling efficiency as well as steering and cornering precision. It’s made with a specific carbon layup to give it just the right feel. And for added control, it features integrated disc brakes with flat mounts and 12mm thru-axles. The D-Fuse Seatpost and handlebar system also help reduce road vibrations, adding to its smooth, compliant feel on the road.
Components: Giant Conduct disc brakes, Shimano Tiagra groupset, 50/34 cranks, 11 x 34 cassette, Giant S-R2 tubeless wheelset 700x28c

Hybrid / flat Bar Road bike

The perfect balance of road bike speed and city bike versatility. Built on a lightweight ALUXX SL aluminum frameset, this new flat-bar road bike puts the rider in a comfortable position that’s smooth and efficient. The fast-rolling 700c wheels and vibration-absorbing composite D-Fuse seatpost help smooth out rough roads. The fast-rolling 700c wheels can accommodate large tires up to 32c, perfect for tackling rough roads with confidence and control, while integrated ergo bar ends keep your hands comfortable on longer adventures. Powerful disc brakes give you added control in all types of weather, and easy-to-use rack mounts make FastRoad SL a smart choice for commuting, fitness riding and weekend adventures.
E-Bike Thrive E+ EX PRO
With THRIVE E+ EX PRO, you get an all-access pass to speed no mater what your fitness level
Designed with Liv’s 3F Design Philosophy, Thrive E+ EX Pro is the first road E-bike built specifically for women. Get up to speed fast with the new SyncDrive Pro motor that provides a natural, yet powerful, E-bike experience. The new motor also features a Smart support mode that automatically adjusts the support level based on your ride. PedalPlus 6-Sensor Technology translates six measurements about your riding and adds the perfect amount of power at just the right time for a fast and fluid ride quality. The EnergyPak Smart 375 battery is so sleek, you’ll have your friends looking twice to know it’s an E-bike.
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