Dogs No Dogs
Cave · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers
This is a burly trail run, but an awesome side trip for those looking for serious elevation gain away from the crowds at Staircase. Watch for downfall, loose rocks, and roots along the trail. Also, be prepared to get your feet wet and muddy.
You'll either love or hate this trail. I wish I could be more glowing about it, but there are very few people who don't feel strongly one way or another about the route up Copper Creek. Located on the western side of the North Fork Skokomish River, the path up to Copper Creek weaves its way up a narrow ravine, passing by two long abandoned mines and leading to possible mountain summits. However, most will want to take this trail to experience the steepness and wild solitude of the Staircase region of Olympic National Park.
For the first mile and a half, the trail is simple to follow, albeit steep for those unaccustomed to the Olympics. Few switchbacks help with the elevation gain, but the path is scenic enough with small falls and cascades to distract you. The forests are pretty enough, and the trail crosses a few awesome wooden bridges to make the path feel like more of an adventure. At 1.9 miles, the trail splits, with both forks leading to the top of the ridge. From here, you can complete the loop along a way trail or locate the boot path that leads to the summits of Timber Mountain and Lightning Peak.
Flora & Fauna
Second growth forests of firs, surrounded by ferns and mossy undergrowth make this a visually appealing trail. Wildflowers will be more visible toward the ridge, and if you head to the summits, entire meadows of heather sit angelically. Deer and elk might be seen, but wildlife sightings are rare on this trail.
Shared By: Doug Scott