Quinault Rainforest Nature Trail is a short natural trail located just outside Olympic National Park in Olympic National Forest. There is a five dollar day use fee, but if you have a National Park Pass, you can place it on your dashboard and avoid the fee. This nature trail offers a beautiful walk through the rainforest areas of the Olympic Peninsula.
From the parking area, the trail makes a 1 mile round-trip loop up the hillside, though it is not very steep. We took the trail clockwise, but you could walk either direction. Follow the signs to stay on the Quinault rainforest nature trail because there is a longer trail that breaks off from the nature trail.
There is plenty of shade, and actually, the full sunlight is quite dim in this area. Before long, the trail comes to a massive tree. There is a platform that allows you to climb right up to the base. This is a massive douglas fir, and it seems to climb right up into the clouds.
The trail continues around, passing other colossal giants. Many trees are draped with moss like bearded old men, and ferns are thick on the forest floor. We saw a few squirrels, but more interesting were the massive banana slugs that were stuck to the tree stumps. They were at least six inches long, and very active. The boys loved seeing the slugs most of all.
Lake Quinault lies along the border of Olympic National Park. This area is a lot less busy than other areas of Olympic Park. We enjoyed this beautiful rainforest trail just as much as other areas of the park, and we didn’t see one other person on our hike.
The Quinault Rainforest nature trail heads around in a clockwise loop and after a short mile ends up back at the parking lot. This is a great short trail if you find yourself in the Lake Quinault Area. It was our favorite in this section of Olympic National Park.