Reserve summer wilderness backpacking spots at Olympic National Park

The summer wilderness backpacking season is rapidly approaching, and representatives with Olympic National Park say planning ahead is critical. Many of the most popular wilderness camp areas in the park have limits for how many people can camp on any given night, they note, and these quotas minimize human impacts and provide a quality wilderness experience.

To have the best chance in making advance reservations, park officials suggest these tips to successfully reserve a permit:

• Olympic National Park wilderness camping permit reservations are made online at

• The reservation system is on a rolling six-month window; meaning on Feb. 5 you can reserve a camp area for a trip beginning Aug. 5 or earlier

• Once the first night of a trip is booked at, users can complete an itinerary even if the rest of the dates are beyond the six-month reservation period (note: user cannot change the start date of a trip without clearing dates and starting again).

• Seven Lakes Basin only allows advance reservations for July 15-Oct. 15 because of snowpack; some high elevation camp areas on the east side of the park, such as Royal Basin and Upper Lena Lake, only allow advance reservations for June 15-Oct. 15 (permits for dates outside these time frames can be picked up in person at a Wilderness Information Center up to 24 hours in advance of a trip)

• If the site desired are not available on, inquire when you arrive if there are any cancellations or if any walk-up quota is available

• Even if campsites do not have a maximum number of spaces available (non-quota), reserving a permit in advance will save time when one arrives at the park; even with reservations, park users still need to pick up a permit at a Wilderness Information Center prior to one’s trip

The park transitioned to the online reservation system in March 2019. The new system allows backpackers to check the availability of sites in real time, plan their trip and receive immediate confirmation and has streamlined the park’s wilderness permit reservations, park officials said.

For more information about wilderness permits and backpacking in Olympic National Park, visit wilderness-trip-planner.htm.

More in Sports

Community scoreboard — Jan. 13, 2021

Golf The Cedars at Dungeness • Men’s Club, Short Course Challenge, Dec.… Continue reading

Park officials amend fishing regulations

Concerned in particular with a forecasted low return of Queets River wild… Continue reading

Prep sports: WIAA revises prep sport seasons, fall sports on deck

Fall sports would be the first to return under an amended prep… Continue reading

Pyeatt in the midst of a metamorphosis

With her focus centered on running at the collegiate level, Sequim junior… Continue reading

Port Angeles Marathon Association
The Port Angeles Marathon Association partnered with the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe and the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe to create the 2021 medals for the Run the Peninsula series.
Registration open for 2021 Run the Peninsula races

Includes the North Olympic Discovery Marathon

Community scoreboard — Dec. 16, 2020

Golf The Cedars at Dungeness • Men’s Club, Food Bank Scramble, Dec.… Continue reading

NWAC: No 20-21 athletic championships, basketball delayed

March Madness, indeed. The Northwest Athletic Conference announced on Dec. 11 that… Continue reading

Community scoreboard — Dec. 9, 2020

Golf The Cedars at Dungeness • Men’s Club, Individual Stroke Play, Dec.… Continue reading

Spruce Railroad Trail at Lake Crescent complete

The Spruce Railroad Trail is now open for visitors. The final phase… Continue reading

Community scoreboard — Dec. 2, 2020

Golf The Cedars at Dungeness • Men’s Club, Strike 3, Nov. 25… Continue reading

Mother and daughter Janet and Jessica Ouellet compete in the Run the Peninsula's virtual 10K Railroad Run together in Seabeck. Photo courtesy of Run the Peninsula
Run the Peninsula series concludes unusual year

It was an unusual year for the Run the Peninsula series, with… Continue reading

PREP SPORTS: WIAA pushes back prep seasons

The return of high school sports will be delayed by at least… Continue reading