Gray Wolf Loop
ElevationAscent: 9,711' 2,960 m
Descent: -9,718' -2,962 m
High: 6,396' 1,950 m
Low: 1,479' 451 m
GradeAvg Grade: 8% (5°)
Max Grade: 54% (28°)
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“A tough loop route that crosses three intense mountain passes while providing scenic views.”— Doug Scott
Taking the loop portion of the route in a counter-clockwise direction leads you on a slightly less steep route of the area. Though you'll still be climbing plenty, your burning legs will appreciate the extra energy. You'll continue on the moderate slope, following the Cameron Creek until you reach Lower Cameron. Continue on until you reach the intersection with the Grand Pass Trail and the Lost Pass Trail. Continue first west, then south on the Lost Pass Trail.
You'll eventually make your way through Upper Cameron, and finally to Cameron Pass. You're at the high point of the loop, so enjoy the views from up here! Even though you'll have reached a high point, you'll still have plenty of climbing ahead.
From Cameron Pass, continue on or explore the surrounding ridges and peaks. You'll enter what is known as the "Thousand Acre Wilderness," and not many visitors see this area. You'll descend for a bit near Lost Peak, and eventually will regain most of your lost elevation as you crest Lost Pass. Shortly after, your descent will start in earnest as you head down to the Dosewallips River, and a junction with the Dosewallips River Trail.
Follow the Dosewallips River Trail back north, as you continue to lose elevation. Though you'll be dropping out of the rugged terrain of the mountains, the views along the Dosewallips River and the dense forest in the surrounding area are still beautiful. Continue on the Dosewallips River Trail until you come to an intersection with the Gray Wolf Trail.
Though the way is mostly downhill, you'll still have a significant amount of mileage ahead of you. The Gray Wolf Trail is just over 20 miles in length, but you'll find the route enjoyable. You'll pass through more rocky, mountainous terrain before your final descent into the densely forested area surrounding the Gray Wolf River. There will be a few spectacular campsites along the way, and it's recommended that you take your time in returning to the trailhead.
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Need to Know, Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes, History & Background
Land Manager: National Park Service - Olympic National Park