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Dry Creek

Olympic Peninsula > Hood Canal
47.5015, -123.3206 Map & Directions
6.0 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
800 feet
Highest Point
1,600 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Good for kids

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass
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Climb through second-growth forest to a not-so-dry creek, while enjoying spring wildflowers and views of nearby Lake Cushman and surrounding peaks. Continue reading

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Hiking Dry Creek

Climb through second-growth forest to a not-so-dry creek, while enjoying spring wildflowers and views of nearby Lake Cushman and surrounding peaks. Start on a private road for the first 0.3 mile, passing several private homes. Beyond here, the trail becomes a footpath and wanders along the shore of Lake Cushman. At 0.8 mile reach an access point to explore the lake’s stumpy shoreline while taking in views of surrounding peaks, including Copper, Lincoln and Rose. At 1 mile reach a viewpoint of 4,301-foot Mount Rose, whose forested summit rises above the lake.

At this point, the trail begins to climb, passing a spur trail on the left that leads to a campsite on Dry Creek. Stay on the main trail, lined with alders and massive cedar stumps. Navigating blowdown can be necessary, especially after storms or early in the season. Though the roar of Dry Creek can be heard, the creek remains out of sight.

After another mile, the trail levels out under a canopy of alder and mixed conifer trees. At about 3.5 miles, the roar of Dry Creek fills the forest and the trail reaches the creek. This marks a good lunch and turnaround spot, as Dry Creek is without footlog, making for difficult crossing during periods of high water.

With caution, experienced hikers may ford the creek. The trail continues on the other side, but maintenance is limited and the route climbs steeply before entering oldgrowth forest of western redcedar, silver fir and hemlock.

Dry Creek is accessible year-round, but spring is an especially wonderful time to visit for both solitude and the display of wildflowers.

WTA Pro Tip: Take the time to enjoy the carpets of bleeding heart, elderberry, false lily-of-the-valley, salmonberry, Solomon’s-seal, western trillium, vanilla-leaf, violet, and many more.

WTA worked here in 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2014, 2013, 2011 and 2010!

Hike Description Written by
Kelsie Donleycott, WTA Correspondent

Dry Creek

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 47.5015, -123.3206 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

See weather forecast

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

Northwest Forest Pass

WTA Pro Tip: Save a copy of our directions before you leave! App-based driving directions aren't always accurate and data connections may be unreliable as you drive to the trailhead.

Getting There

From Olympia, drive US-101 north to Hoodsport; turn left on Lake Cushman Rd (SR-119) for 14.7 miles; turn left, crossing the causeway, and left again for trailhead parking.

More Hike Details


Olympic Peninsula > Hood Canal

Dry Creek (#872)

Olympic National Forest, Hood Canal Ranger District

Guidebooks & Maps

Day Hiking: Olympic Peninsula (Romano - Mountaineers Books)

Green Trails Mt Tebo No. 199

Custom Correct Mount Skokomish-Lake Cushman

Dry Creek Trail #872 Olympic National Forest PDF Map:

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Dry Creek

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