Planning Your Trip
There are a number of factors that you need to consider when planning your trip. We'll cover many of them below and will assist you personally with your own unique needs as you plan your trip.
What do you want to experience on your trip?
The Olympic Peninsula has great diversity and is quite large. It takes 7 hours of continuous driving to complete the 318 mile loop road (Rt 101). Do you want to experience the rain forest? or the wild Pacific coastline? or the high country? or all of it? How much time you have will largely determine how much you can see and do. Or you may want to consider settling into one place and exploring it more deeply or setting up a single base camp and exploring different areas on day trips with your car. Click here for a map of the Olympic Peninsula with driving times between some of the destinations.
What day of the week and time of day will you be picking up your gear?
This is important because it will help determine where you'll be spending your first night. Most of the Olympic National Park campgrounds are on a first come first serve basis and many will fill up by noon during the busy months. Since there is turnover in every campground every day of the week, you can almost always get a site if you're there by 10AM. Reservations can be made at WA state parks and at Kalaloch in the National Park, though this fills up very early in the season. There are also many Forest Service campsites that are available on a first come first serve basis. If you're flying in and can't pick up your gear until later in the day, there are 5 campgrounds less than 10 miles from our location. Your choice of campground(s) may also be determined by the activities you want to pursue. Do you want to do a lot of hiking or will you be doing sightseeing trips with your car? Do you have children and what are their interests and capabilities? Put some thought into these questions and go to Where To Camp for more information on a campgrounds.
What size is your vehicle?
You'll need to have enough extra space in your vehicle to accomodate the camping gear that you'll be picking up so make sure to factor in the number of people and their personal luggage. The photo on the left shows a typical two person deluxe package in the back of a standard sized SUV. If you're renting a vehicle, remember to factor in for both your personal luggage and your camping gear and choose a larger vehicle. We do make available waterproof roof top carriers as an extra rental option if you don't have the space inside your vehicle. This option requires a roof rack.
How much time do you have?
If your schedule can allow, consider planning at least 3 nights, which will give you 2 full days to enjoy your camping experience. Exploring all that the Olympic Peninsula has to offer would take more than a lifetime, but the more days that you can spend here, the more you can see and do. Besides everything that Olympic National Park has to offer, there are also many other activities to consider. Kayaking, road and mountain biking, wineries, sailing and whale watching are just some of the options. Go to our Links page for more information.