Hike to Heart Lake

Trail to Heart Lake

One of the most heavily hiked trails in the Olympic National Park is the High Divide trail. The High Divide is a section of the ridge between the Sol Duc and Hoh Rivers. Overnight reservation permits are required and get booked up months in advance.

The first section of the High Divide loop follows the Sol Duc River Trail and then heads up along Bridge Creek (which is not easily accessible at most locations). The image above shows the trail climbing from Sol Duc Park to Heart Lake (shown below). I have hiked the trail to Heart Lake several times without continuing along the rest of the High Divide loop. The reasons to do so usually involve weather … or, early in the season) lots of snow left on the ridgeline.

Looking down on Heart Lake
Stream feeding Bridge Creek on the climb to Heart Lake

The trail to Heart Lake climbs up into and through some of the finest samples of mountain meadows in the Olympics. (see above) There are many small streams, keeping the flowers well watered and providing a water source for thirsty hikers.

On the return, it is worth the short side trip to Sol Duc Falls (shown below).

Sol Duc Falls

Avalanche Lilies

Avalanche Liles

This nice little patch of avalanche lilies was growing along the way trail (running to their left and then up the rocks) that ran up to the ridge line in the upper reaches of the Duckabush valley in the Olympic National Park. One of the main reasons I took the photo was because of the lily in the upper left … while lilies typically have 6 petals, this one only had 4. “Huh” I said. I’d better take a photo.



Lupine in the high country of the Olympic National Park. One of my favorite locations for shooting photos. and one of my favorite subjects.

Calypso Orchids

Calypso Orchids

Also called “Lady Slippers”, these are some of my favorite springtime flowers. Most of the orchids that are native to the Pacific Northwest are even smaller and less showy than these.

Bear Grass and Tow-headed Baby

Bear Grass

Just a couple of flower photos to brighten up the last few days of (calendar) winter. Both Bear Grass and Tow-headed Baby are relatively common wildflowers in Olympic National Park. Tow-heads are an anemone that have gone to seed (aka western pasque flower). Towheads are found in mountain meadow areas, but bear grass is found at most elevations.

Tow-headed Baby

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: