Stroll through a wonderland of stupendous moss-covered trees.
The Hall of Mosses is the name of a distinct hiking trail in Olympic National Park, located in the Hoh Rainforest. Plucked straight from a storybook, the trail is filled with old trees -- a mixture of temperate bigleaf maples and Sitka spruces – draped in green and brown mosses. Along the main trail, there is an otherworldy 200 foot side path which leads to an enchanting grove of giant maple trees, cloaked in hanging moss. One visitor to the trail wrote that “the trees stand like green-robed figures of eld.”
Due to the abundance of water and nutrients in the soil of the rainforest, many of the large trees have stunted roots and fall easily during particularly windy storms. As a result, the Hall of Mosses also serves as a graveyard for fallen mossy trees. However, many trees and mosses continue to grow from and over the fallen tree trunks.
The Rainforest receives up to 14 feet of rain a year, resulting in the lush green canopy that covers most of the forest. The National Park Services websites states, “The Hoh Rain Forest is located in the stretch of the Pacific Northwest rainforest which once spanned the Pacific coast from southeastern Alaska to the central coast of California. The Hoh is one of the finest remaining examples of temperate rainforests in the United States.”
Know Before You Go
From Seattle/East: Take Kingston Ferry to Highway 104. Continue to 101 (the road that circles around Olympic Peninsula and Olympic National Park) past Port Angeles and Forks. Roughly 20 miles from Forks, take left on Upper Hoh Road which will lead you to the Hoh Rainforest and the magnificent Hall of Mosses.
From Vancouver/North: Take Swartz Bay - Tsawwassen ferry and continue on 17 to the Victoria - Port Angeles, WA ferry. Follow Highway 101 directions above.
From South: Find Highway 101 and continue into Olympic National Park, turn right on Upper Hoh Road into the Hoh Rainforest.
Content originally created for Atlas Obscura.