What Is the Best Time to Travel to Olympic National Park?

Sumer is the most popular time to travel to Olympic National Park, but a winter or fall trip will be far cheaper.
Written by Patrick Price
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Updated on Jun 01, 2022
If you love beautiful mountains, dense northern rain forests, wildlife watching, and outdoor adventures, Olympic National Park might be the ideal vacation destination for you! Summer is generally regarded as the best time to visit the park. But if you are looking to avoid crowds, save money, or do some backcountry skiing, winter might be a better option. 
Olympic National Park is one of the oldest national parks in the U.S. It plays host to unique forms of wildlife, exciting conservation science study, and tourists alike. But the park is as unpredictable as it is beautiful. Weather conditions can change quickly and dramatic storms range over the land year-round. 
Picking the right time to visit is the first step to planning an enjoyable trip to Olympic. Fortunately,
car insurance
has the comprehensive guide you need to help you determine the best time to travel to Olympic National Park. 
Let Jerry find your price in only 45 seconds
No spam · No long forms · No fees
Find insurance savings (100% Free)

The best times of year to travel to Olympic National Park

The ideal time for your visit to Olympic National Park will vary depending on what you’re planning on doing there and how well to tolerate uncomfortable weather conditions. Most visitors will want to come in the spring or summer for the nice weather and numerous outdoor activities.
If saving money or ideal skiing conditions are high priorities for you, winter will be your best bet. The shoulder seasons of spring and fall offer a good balance of moderate weather, low prices, and light crowds.

Peak season: July to August

Warm weather in Olympic National Park
The good: Warm weather, park sponsored activities, hiking
The bad: Sudden rain and periodic fog, crowds
The weather: Low 60s to mid-70s
Summer is generally regarded as the best time to visit Olympic National Park, so long as you don’t mind the crowds. 
While there can be sudden or unexpected rainstorms, July through August is still the driest season in
. This time of year is best for the many outdoor activities available at Olympic. These include:
  • Hiking
  • Fishing
  • Camping
  • Boating 
  • Backpacking
Summer is also the best time to catch a glimpse of some of the park's diverse wildlife such as the Roosevelt Elk or Olympic Marmot. June, July, and August are the most popular months to visit Olympic Nation Park, due to the pleasant weather. This also means that the park will be the most crowded during these months. If you want to arrange a hiking itinerary or reserve a camping spot, make sure to do so well in advance.
Whether you’re looking to backpack through
Sol Duc Valley
or kayak on
Lake Cresent
, summer will be the best time to visit Olympic National Park. 
Pro Tip Many of the outdoor activities at Olympic National Park require licenses and/or permits. Make sure to arrange any needed
fees and passes
before your trip. 

Off-season: November to April

Cold weather in Olympic National Park
The good: Less crowded, skiing, snowboarding 
The bad: Cold weather, deep snow, and facilities and roads might have to close
The weather: Low 20s to high 30s 
If you don’t mind the cold and the wet, Winter can be a great time to visit Olympic National Park while avoiding the summer crowds. 
Winter is the least popular season to travel to the park due to the inclement weather. Temperatures are usually at or below freezing. This combined with the high precipitation level means the park is often blanketed in snow during the winter. Facilities and activities will be fewer and have restricted hours. Snow buildup can also force some of the roads to close.
But there are still some great ways to enjoy
Olympic National Park in the winter
, such as skiing or snowshoeing at
Hurricane Ridge
Pro Tip Check online for any road closers when you’re getting ready for your trip. Some areas of the park can become completely inaccessible during the winter. 

Shoulder seasons: May to June & September to October

Aerial shot of Olympic National Park
The good: Smaller crowds than in the summer and higher temperatures than in winter
The bad: Unpredictable weather, some roads and facilities may still be closed 
The weather: Anywhere between the low 20s and mid-60s 
Fall and spring are the shoulder season for Olympic National Park, and they can be very unpredictable. Some days will have very pleasant temperatures and clear skies, while others can be bitter cold. The park can sometimes get snow as late as June or as early as September.  
Spring is the second most popular time to visit. If you’re there on a day when the weather is pleasant, you can enjoy all the natural beauty of the park without the heavy crowds. 
Visitors to the park tend to dwindle in the fall as the temperatures start to drop. If a little chill doesn’t bother you, the fall offers brilliant autumn coloring perfect for sightseeing. This is a good time for
day hikes
. Camping is best avoided though, as the nights will get very cold. 

The cheapest time to travel to Olympic National Park

Lodging, fees, and other travel expenses will be the cheapest in the winter due to lack of demand. The prevailing cold and wet conditions during the winter months discourage most tourists from visiting the park during the off-season. You can usually find excellent deals between November and April.
If trudging through the snow doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, you might consider visiting during one of the two shoulder seasons. They are not quite as cheap as the winter, but they are less expensive than in the summer and the weather is nicer than in the winter. 

Find the best month for your visit to Olympic National Park

Still not sure which time of year you’d like to visit Olympic National Park? Let’s take a closer look at the ideal months for different activities available in the park. This should help you narrow it down.
Best month to visit
April to August
Starting in mid-spring the weather starts to improve making outdoor hiking easier and more enjoyable.
July and August
It takes a bit longer for the rivers to thaw and the lakes to warm up. For the most ideal boating conditions, it’s best to wait until mid-summer.
June to August
Summer offers the best camping conditions with warm days, cool evenings, and less rainfall.
December to February
In the dead of winter, Olympic National Park is almost always blanketed in snow. Backcountry skiing in the hills and mountains is a popular pastime
Pro Tip No matter the season, weather in Washington can change quickly. Check all forecasts before your trip and bring clothing for every type of weather just in case. 

How to find savings on car and rental insurance

The Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is the closest airport to Olympic National Park, and it is still over a two-hour drive to reach the park. If you decide to fly, you’ll still need to
rent a car
once you land.
Whether it’s your own car that you drove to Olympic or a rental car, you’ll need quality car insurance coverage. Traveling can be expensive, but getting great coverage for your car doesn’t need to be. Super-app
is the world’s fastest method for finding and comparing car insurance rates. 
Download the app and we’ll have quotes from the nation's top providers for you to choose from in just seconds! Once you’ve chosen a policy, we’ll handle the paperwork and even cancel your old insurance for you! 
found me car rental insurance, I’ve recommended them to all my colleagues, friends, and family. The service got me just what I needed.” —Luis C. 


Compare Car Insurance Quotes For Free
Jerry automatically shops for your insurance before every renewal. Members save $872/year.
rating primary
Rating on App Store
Start saving money!
12,000+ Reviews
Trusted by 3.5M car owners like you

You might also be interested

Easiest way to compare and buy car insurance

No long forms
No spam or unwanted phone calls
Quotes from top insurance companies
Find insurance savings — it's 100% free