In a clunky title to a press release sent by Olympic National Park officials, it has been announced that the super gorgeous and extremely scenic Seven Lakes Basin region of Olympic National Park will not be closed from July 9th through the 20th. This news means that you can once again backpack into this amazing area! However, there is a catch. Permits to camp in this backcountry wonderland must be obtained in person.
The Press Release reads as follows:
The administrative closure of the Seven Lakes Basin/High Divide area July 9 through July 20 is no longer in effect. Seven Lakes Basin is a quota area and permits will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis for backpacking trips during this timeframe. Permits will be available in person beginning the day before the trip. Advance reservation requests will not be accepted for these dates.
There are currently four locations to obtain a permit, but only two are open on weekdays, so plan accordingly.
3283 Mora Rd, Forks, WA 98331
Friday through Sunday, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Inside the Hoodsport Visitor Information Center, 150 N Cushman Rd., Hoodsport, WA 98548
Friday through Sunday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
USFS Pacific Ranger District – Quinault office, 353 South Shore Road Quinault, WA 98575
Open daily 8:00 am – 4:00 p.m.
3002 Mount Angeles Road, Port Angeles, WA 98362
Sunday – Thursday, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm ; Friday – Saturday, 8:00 am – 6:00 pm
Commercial Use Authorization (CUA) and Special Use Permit (SUP) holders may obtain a permit for this timeframe in person at the Port Angeles Wilderness Information Center beginning the day before the trip.
Wilderness Permit fees are $8.00 per person, per night for individuals 16 or older. Annual Wilderness Passes are $45.00 per person (annual flat rate).
For questions regarding the permit process, please call (360)565-3100 or email olym_WIC@nps.gov.
Distance: 19.3 mile loop
Backcountry Campsite Reservations: Permits are required and must be obtained at the Wilderness Information Centers.
Backcountry Camping Areas: 7
Recommended Days: 3-5 days
One of the more popular backpacking trip in Olympic National Park, those who get a permit to Seven Lakes Basin are rewarded with eye candy of mountains, lakes, animals and forests. Aptly named, the basin is full of lakes, mountain goats (but not for long), wildflowers, and incredible views of glaciated peaks around the Olympic Mountain Range. Starting with the always impressive Sol Duc Falls, the trail heads up along the Sol Duc River, gaining in elevation before depositing hikers into an alpine wonderland. With campsites around the lakes, finding your favorite destination may be quite hard, as each lake offers unrivaled beauty. The highlights are probably Heart Lake and Lunch Lake, but Hoh Lake and Deer Lake are also quite spectacular. The Seven Lake Basin Loop is best done during clear summer nights, when after spending a day exploring the lakes and ridges of the region, you can sit back and enjoy one of best stargazing views in the park. For those looking for a high alpine experience in Olympic National Park, this is one of your best options. Read more HERE.
Thanks to Josh Hudson for the rad cover image for this article!
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