The Best Time to Visit Olympic National Park

The best time to visit Olympic National Park is in July and August. It is when you will experience the best weather.

The weather is usually warm with temperatures in the mid-70s during midday. All the facilities and roads are open. This summer period sees the highest influx of tourists.

Best time for good weather

Olympic National Park Good Weather

The best time for good weather in Olympic National Park is from July and August.

A significant part of the reason for the preservation of the land on the Olympic Peninsula is to prevent deforestation in the temperate Hoh Rainforest.

The region receives an average of 150 inches of rainfall throughout the year. These two months experience much less rainfall on average than any other month. However, it is still a good idea to bring rain gear on your trip to this National Park.

The winters are long in this area, and the snow can stick around for long periods in the higher elevations. July and August give you the best likelihood that snow will not impede your trip and the parts of the park you want to visit.

Best time for camping

Olympic National Park Camping

The best time for camping in Olympic National Park is during the primary summer months of May through October.

During the earlier and later parts of the season, if you camp in higher elevations, you might want to watch for snow on the weather forecast.

Camping for more than a night or two in the park will almost guarantee that you might put up with the rain. Before going on your trip, use tent waterproofing spray on your gear to keep yourself dry. If the winter is hanging on, consider a tent heater to stay warm.

Read More : Guide to Camping in Olympic National Park

Best time for hiking

Olympic National Park Hiking

The best time for hiking in Olympic National Park is throughout the months of May through September.

In the high country, you are likely to begin getting snowfall starting in September. If you decide to take a hiking trip at the beginning or end of the season, bring a winter jacket and winter boots so that you are prepared for the colder weather and snow.

Otherwise, there are extensive hiking trails that you can use in the lower elevations of the park that are in a more temperate climate.

Read More : Hiking Trails in Olympic National Park

Best time to avoid crowds

Olympic National Park Avoid Crowds

The best time to avoid crowds in Olympic National Park is in October, November, and December.

The rate of tourism falls steeply during these months even though there are plenty of things to do in the park during the winter. It can be more difficult to navigate around the park during the winter months, though, since the snow piles high enough to close some of the roads in higher elevations.

If you want a chance to see snowcapped mountains or winter storms on the beach on your own, the best chance to do so is during the winter months.

Best time to see wildlife

Olympic National Park See Wildlife

The best time for seeing wildlife in Olympic National Park is during the spring from March until June.

These months see wildlife coming out for the first time and being more excited about the warmer weather. They might also be less skittish during these earlier months since they are less accustomed to people walking through the park and in the forests.

There are many different types of wildlife you have the opportunity to see in this park since there are ocean areas and areas of high elevation. You can whale watch during spring or check out the tidepools at any time of the year. 

Bring your binoculars if you want a chance to see some of the more elusive birds and mammals.

Best time for stargazing

Olympic National Park Stargazing

The best time for stargazing in Olympic National Park is during the winter months, such as November through February.

Areas in higher elevations are also preferable since they are typically more clear at night.

The area can be extremely foggy, and the cold weather helps to crystallize the moisture in the air instead of letting it hang and create a mist over the night sky. Olympic National Park is not known for its stargazing due to the rainy and misty weather patterns.

Best time for tide-pooling

Olympic National Park Tide Pooling

The best time for tide-pooling in Olympic National Park is between the months of March to September.

These warmer periods of the year bring plenty of marine life to the shore. Early in this season is also when the whales begin to migrate, and there is a chance you can view them from shore.

Some of the animals that you should watch out for include rock crabs, sea stars, pricklebacks, wolf eels, barnacles, brittle stars, sea snails, and clams. Always be careful when going tide-pooling since the tide coming in and out can be dangerous and trap you in some of the more remote areas of these beaches.

Best time for fishing

Olympic National Park Fishing

The best time for fishing in Olympic National Park in the months of December and January.

The Department of Fish and Wildlife reports that the best time to catch steelhead is during these months.

The best time of the year also depends on what kind of fishing you prefer. Fly fishing is easier to do during the late spring into early fall. It can be very cold in the higher elevations otherwise, and the fish bite less often. 

Before going, check out the catch record reports for the species of fish you are interested in catching. These are put out by the Department of Fish and Wildlife each year.

Best time for boating

Olympic National Park Boating

The best time for boating in Olympic National Park is from May to September.

Boating has become an incredibly popular activity in the National Park since there are rivers that connect to the ocean and allow for excellent adventuring opportunities.

There are many areas that allow you to rent kayaks, canoes, and white water rafts during the summer. It depends on where you want to go for the most appropriate watercraft.

Best time for snowsports

Olympic National Park Snowsports

The best time for snowsports in Olympic National Park is from November to February.

The season can also extend further depending on how high in elevation you travel in the park.

The average amount of snowfall across the Olympic Peninsula that accumulates is about 14.5 inches. However, depending on the winter, the higher elevations, like Hurricane Ridge, can record up to 35 feet of snow each year.

Olympic National Park Seasons


Olympic National Park Summer

The summer is a shorter season in some parts of the Olympic National Park. It stays cool year-round there, even during the summer. The average temperature during most of the summer stays around 62°F during the day and 44°F during the night, or 16.7°C to 6.7°C.

The summer tends to get lower amounts of precipitation than many of the other months of the year. June gets an average of 6 days of rainfall in the month, while July and August receive about three days of precipitation each month.

Read More : What Should I Pack for Summer Camping?


Olympic National Park Fall

Fall often feels like it lasts only through September for most people. It gets steadily more rain than during the summer months, with about seven days of rain during the month. The temperature begins to drop in September. The daytime temperature is about 56°F or 13.3°C.

Then, in October, the daytime temperature drops to an average of 46°F or 7.8°C, and it receives 13 days of rainfall. November tends to be more of a winter month here than an autumnal month. The average daytime temperature is 37°F or 2.8°C. 

There are 18 days that receive rainfall on average.


Olympic National Park Winter

From December to February, the temperature stays about the same, just about freezing during the day and about 24°F or -4.4°C at night.

A lot of rain falls in the lower elevations during the winter months, and it is essential to come prepared, or you will end up wet almost every day. In the higher elevations, the precipitation falls in the form of snow. 

There is an average of 16 days each month that it rains or snows during the winter.


Olympic National Park Spring

The spring begins to warm up but also sees just as much rainfall as the winter. In March, the daytime temperatures are around 37°F or 2.8°C. There are 18 days of rainfall on average. 

April becomes steadily nicer but is still quite cold during the night. The daytime temperature is around 42°F and 5.6°C. 

Finally, May is around 49°F or 9.4°C during the day and just over freezing on average at night.

Amanda Williams

Amanda Williams is a writer, plant-nerd, and outdoor enthusiast. She has traveled extensively, around the U.S., throughout Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Everywhere she treks, she takes time to enjoy the outdoors. John Muir is her hero. She aspires to inspire people to live better as he did.