Spruce Railroad Trail

Lake Crescent, Olympic Peninsula

Lake Crescent, Olympic Peninsula

Spruce Railroad Trail follows the bed of a railroad once used to haul Sitka spruce trees out of Olympic Peninsula forests in western Washington state. Originally intended to be used in manufacturing aircraft in World War I, the spruce logs supplied commercial logging interests for nearly forty years until declining market demand brought the logging and the rail line to a close. The National Park Service has since converted four miles of the abandoned railroad into this scenic trail.

The Trail
Day Hike!
Olympic Peninsula

"This path can get crowded in the summer with both bicycles and hikers, so if it is solitude you seek, you might enjoy the hike along the shores of this crystal-clear lake more in late fall or winter. I prefer to do this hike from west to east because the west trailhead gives a more wild feel to the trail; the east trailhead is next to several private residences.

"The trail begins above Lake Crescent, whose jeweled waters seem to vary with the seasons from silver-gray in the winter to emerald, sapphire, and turquoise in the summer. You'll follow the old railbed as it drops gently about 40 feet to the water's edge, passing the only sections of rail remaing from tracks long gone. Once at a level just above the lake, the trail meanders along following the shoreline of the lake, occasionally leaving sight of the shore to traverse cuts made to even the rail grade."

Distance: 8.2 miles round-trip
Hiking Time: 4 hours
High Point: 680 feet
Difficulty: Easy

Day Hike! Olympic Peninsula
Day Hike!
Olympic Peninsula
West Virginia

by Seabury Blair
Sasquatch Books, 2014

Composed by local outdoor columnist and guidebook author Seabury Blair, this is a compendium of 73 trails on the Olympic Peninsula that can be traversed in a single day - no overnight camping necessary.

"You deserve to see firsthand why splndid emerald forests, diamond-faceted lakes, pearly mountains, and turquoise streams are so precious as to be without calculable value," Blair tells his readers.

"The more people who experience the untrammeled beauty of the wild Olympic Peninsula, I believe, the more people willhelp ensure that it lasts for future generations."


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