Visiting La Crosse Basin from Quinault

We hiked into La Crosse Basin inside Olympic National Park. The walk would lead us through lush rainforest, then climb into the mountains, to visit high alpine lakes. We would bring 7 days worth of food in our backpacks, just after getting resupplied in Quinault, Wa.

How We Got to La Crosse Basin

We started our hike at the Graves Creek Trailhead, just upriver from Lake Quinault. The East Fork Quinault Trail lead us through lush rainforest to a place called Enchanted Valley. Shortly after that, we would start our climb into the Olympic Mountains. Before reaching Anderson Pass, we would turn onto another trail, which lead us to La Crosse Basin. Want to learn more? Guides to all the trails in Olympic National Park.

mount anderson
Looking into Mount Anderson

After a resupply and hitch back to the trail - this route would lead us up a river valley into Enchanted Valley, O'neal Pass, Lacrosse Basin, Hart Lake, Anderson Pass, Dosewallips River Valley and hitch out for a few days.

Enchanted Valley
Foot selfie at the Enchanted Valley Chalet

O'neal Pass Sign
Turning off the main trail, to a side trip for a few days in Lacrosse Basin

White Creek Basin
Enjoying views from alpine meadows

O'neal Pass Trail
Crossing a few early season snow fields

East Fork Quinault Valley
Looking down the East Fork Quinault River Valley, where we started this adventure.

Hiking with minimalist footwear on snow  

Black Bear
1 of 2 Black Bear to be seen in the area

o'neal pass trail
Nearing O'Neal Pass

O'neal Pass Sign
Mount Duckabush
A little off trail travel

La crosse basin
Sunrise from camp

minimalist sandals
Hiking with minimalist sandals on snow

La Crosse Basin
Day hiking around at Marmot, Hart and Lacrosse Lakes

My tent with mountains in the background

Anderson Pass Trail
Walking through the wrath of a winter avalanche, near Anderson Pass

Anderson Pass avalanche
Spring avalanche destroys the forest and the trail

Anderson Pass
Anderson Pass: crossing over from the Quinault to the Dosewallips side

Camp Siberia
The last good view of the Olympic Mountains

Passing the La Crosse Pass Trail Sign

Honeymoon Meadows
Honeymoon Meadows on the Dosewallips

west fork dosewallips trail
Dosewallips River dropping elevation

west fork dosewallips trail
Bridge leading back to the Dosewallips Trailhead

Dosewallips Campground
Dosewallips Campground horse camp

dosewallips road
Walking the Dosewallips Road, to hitchhike back to the city for more food.

Overview of the Trip

Overall this was a great hike. Lots of dynamically changing landscapes and a healthy variations of wildlife. I especially liked viewing all the Olympic Black Bear cooling off from the summer heat in snow. That was a real treat.

I would definitely recommend this trip to others, as it's a great way to see what Olympic National Park has to offer, and why it is important that it is preserved for the next generations.

Editor's Note: Article part of a multi-week backpacking trip in the Olympic National Park
or read the next page of story 30+ Days in Olympic National Park.

Updated in March 2017 by Barefoot Jake