Backpack - Shi Shi Beach


Backpack - Shi Shi Beach

This easy 2-night backpack of 8 miles and 200 feet of elevation gain features an often muddy wilderness trail that descends to the most beautiful beach of the Olympic Coast, where we will camp two nights with time to explore scenic coastal features and tide pools. Offered as part of the B3 course but open to all qualified Mountaineers members over 18.

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers activity.
  • Fri, Jun 3, 2016 — Sun, Jun 5, 2016
  • Foothills Backpacking Committee
  • Backpacking
  • Singles, 20-30 Somethings, Retired Rovers, Adults
  • Easy
  • Easy
  • Mileage: 8.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 200 ft

9:00 AM Friday at the Olympic National Park Wilderness Information Center in Port Angeles: 3002 Mount Angeles Road, Port Angeles, WA 98362

This trip is offered as a teaching backpack in conjunction with the Backpacking Building Blocks course, though open to all qualified Mountaineers members over 18.  As such, the trip will include an extra focus on teaching, coaching and demonstration related to backpacking gear and skills, tailored to the needs and interests of the group.

We'll start  at the Wilderness Information Center where we will pay camp fees and pick up required bear canisters for those who don't have them.  We then drive two hours to Neah Bay, where we will pick up the Makah Recreation Pass for parking our cars near the trailhead. These fees will be shared equally by participants. Also, riders should reimburse drivers - we recommend a general guideline of 12c/mile.

On Friday after hiking 2 miles on a rain-saturated but level trail through Sitka spruce forest and negotiating a 150-foot bluff, we descend into a coastal paradise. We will hike 2 miles on the beach and establish camp near Petroleum Creek or another creek further south. Early Saturday we will enjoy a beach hike to Point of the Arches to explore sea stacks and tide pools. Sunday, before returning to the TH, we explore the tide pools at the north end of Shi Shi Beach.  

Water is available from Petroleum Creek and Willoughby Creek, but must be boiled, filtered or treated. 

Low tides are predicted for this weekend, allowing optimal viewing of marine life at low tides at Point of Arches, at the south end of the beach, as well as a cove north of Shi Shi Beach which involves a short rock scramble. 

After hiking out relatively early on Sunday there are options for sight-seeing.

  1. An 8-mile round trip drive to Cape Flattery where a half mile boardwalk leads to a viewpoint at the most northwestern tip of the continuous lower 48 States.         
  2. A visit to the historic Makah Museum where artifacts from the ancient, native village at Cape Alava are displayed.  This could be followed with a lunch of local smoked salmon and/or lunch items bought at the general store in Neah Bay. 

Participants renting bear canisters at the WIC in Port Angeles must stop there on the way home to return them.  Due to the long drive home and possible stops, plan on arriving home late Sunday evening.


Shi Shi Beach

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Ten Essentials plus overnight gear which may include:

  • Tent with footprint/ground tarp
  • Stove and fuel
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Water filter
  • Bear canister or extra stuff sack and cord designated for hanging food
  • Cooking pot/pan with plate and utensils
  • Toilet paper and shovel or blue bag to deal with waste
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