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Elwha Basin / Martins Lakes '13,  Olympic National Park,  Sep 17, 2013 - Sep 22, 2013     page 1 / 113

This year, for my solo backpacking trip, I prepared to visit the Bailey Range via the North Fork Quinault trailhead. This entry was attempted in 2010. Unfortunately, heavy rains had swollen the rivers to a level which made fording at 16-mile a dangerous issue. I was hopeful that this would not be the case this year.

I set out on Tuesday, September 17. The forecast for the week was not terribly encouraging, but I had a few alternatives in mind just in case. I hit the trail around 11:30 am. Partial clouds made for a dry, comfortable hike.

The trail begins at roughly 600 feet elevation, through a mix of maple, fir, spruce and cedar. Leaves on the trail indicated that summer had certainly ceded to autumn.

Moss covered maples are common in the lower Quinault Valley