Hurricane Ridge's Marvelous Olympic Marmots
Discover panoramic views of the Olympic mountains, subalpine wildflowers, butterflies, birds, and mammals on Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours with a biologist.
Hurricane Ridge summary
You will quickly discover why people have been enjoying Hurricane Ridge for thousands of years. Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours could easily be the highlight of your Olympic National Park experience. The sparse stands of stunted subalpine trees and tapestry of subalpine wildflowers create ample viewing opportunities of Olympic National Park plants and wildlife.
Hurricane Ridge for all seasons
You can not spend too much time sightseeing, hiking, and wildlife viewing on a tour up to Hurricane Ridge - there is always something new to see. In May and June, snow drifts offer a dazzling scenic backdrop, playground for young Olympic Marmots, boundary to crowds of avalanche lilies, and “red carpet” for male Sooty Grouse displaying to attract females.
Hurricane Ridge accessibility
Unlike many other subalpine locations in Olympic National Park, tours up to Hurricane Ridge occur after only 45 minutes of driving from Port Angeles. The subalpine ecosystem you will experience on Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours is highly accessible, and includes a multitude of spectacular hiking trails.
Hurricane Ridge wildlife
The importance of timing for Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours is critical to enjoying a plethora of wildlife and enjoying solitude on the trail. It is best to organize hikes up to Hurricane Ridge early in the morning or to organize a sunset hiking tour to take advantage of the twilight hours. In late summer, timing is especially important because warmer temperatures are the perfect conditions for mid-day Olympic National Park wildlife slumber (meaning fewer wildlife sightings).
Olympic Peninsula biodiversity on Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours
Olympic National Park plant and wildlife photographs and lists of Hurricane Ridge birds, mammals, and subalpine wildflowers seen during 2011 and 2012 are included below. A separate page addressing Olympic Peninsula biodiversity delves deeper into the geology of the Olympic National Park.
Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours: Olympic National Park birds list
Hurricane Ridge birds heard or seen on a June 17, 2012 hiking tour
Band-Tailed Pigeon, Northern Flicker, Olive-sided Flycatcher, Western Wood Pewee, Hammond's Flycatcher, Warbling Vireo, American/Northwestern Crow, Horned Lark, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Pacific Wren, Golden-crowned Kinglet, Varied Thrush, American Robin, Hermit Thrush, American Pipit, White-crowned Sparrow, and Dark-eyed Junco.
Additional Hurricane Ridge birds on a July 1, 2012 hiking tour
Sooty Grouse, Vaux's Swift, Gray Jay, Common Raven, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, and Yellow-rumped Warbler (Audubon's).
Additional Olympic National Park birds from a Washington Ornithological Society (WOS) birding tour up to Hurricane Ridge on August 20, 2011
Golden Eagle, Downy Woodpecker, Clark’s Nutcracker, Townsend’s Warbler, Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, Red Crossbill, American Goldfinch, Pine Siskin, and Evening Grosbeak.
Additional specialty Hurricane Ridge birds possible while hiking
American Kestrel, American Three-toed Woodpecker, dark Hairy females with barring like American Three-toed Woodpeckers, Townsend's Solitaire, Western Bluebird, Pine Grosbeak
Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours: mammals list
Olympic National Park mammals viewed from a Hurricane Ridge hike on June 17, 2012
Black Bear, Olympic Marmot, Olympic Chipmunk, and Black-Tailed Deer.
Additional mammals possible when hiking on Hurricane Ridge
Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing tours: subalpine wildflowers list
Subalpine wildflowers viewed from Hurricane Ridge hiking on June 17, 2012
Trillium, Yellow Glacier Lily, Avalanche Lily, Chocolate Lily, Spring Beauty, Western Wallflower (Wormseed Mustard), Stonecrop, Marsh-Marigold, Larkspur, Wild Strawberry, Subalpine (Broad-Leaf or Arctic) Lupine, Violet, Martindale's Lomatium, Spreading Phlox, Paintbrush, Dandelion, and Smooth Douglasia.
Additional Subalpine wildflowers blooming according to naturalists at the Hurricane Ridge Olympic National Park Visitor’s Center on August 7, 2012
Red (Pink) Mountain-Heather, Olympic Onion, Tiger (Columbia) Lily, Hellebore (Corn Lily), Bog Orchid, American Bistort, Sandwort, Western Pasqueflower (Anemone), Western Meadowrue, Red (Sitka) Columbine, Goatsbeard, Partridgefoot, Cinquefoil, Fireweed, Cow-Parsnip, Phacelia, Showy Jacob’s Ladder, Foxglove, Sickletop Lousewort, Elephant’s Head, Owl-Clover, Speedwell, Penstemon, Yarrow, Pussytoes, Pearly Everlasting, Shooting Star, Bluebells-of-Scotland (Common Harebell), Piper’s Bellflower (endemic subalpine wildflower), and Valerian.
Read Hurricane Ridge hiking and wildlife viewing reviews that describe touring with Carolyn of ExperienceOlympic Guided Tours