Church Creek–Satsop Lakes


Stewardship - Church Creek–Satsop Lakes

Join the Olympia Branch for National Trails Day and celebration of our nation’s remarkable trails and kick off our annual trail maintenance program on our adopted trail in the Olympic National Forest, the Church Creek Trail.

  • Moderate/Strenuous
  • Moderate
  • Mileage: 2.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 800 ft

We will meet at 7:30 a.m. at Haggen’s Food and Drug located at 1313 Cooper Point Road Northwest, Olympia.  Meet on the left-hand side of the large parking lot (left while facing the storefront) over by a row of trees. For those interested, we will arrange a car pool to the Church Creek Trail about 50 miles from Olympia.  Those cars being left will be relocated to a safe parking locaton.  Meeting elsewhere can be arranged, but meeting at this unique trailhead is not on option because the trailhead is not an easy location to find.

 All vehicles taken on this trip will need high clearance.  A portion (10 miles) of the road access is not paved.  The last 3 miles has unusually deep water bars for drainage which requires that vehicles have high clearance. 

A trail scouting trip will be scheduled in late May to obtain an up-to-date assessment of the current trail problems as well as the  safest and most practical work assignments.

The Church Creek Trail is a rugged and rustic trail through an old growth forest that abounds in native plants, small canyons and waterfalls and trail challenges for hikers.   With a unique variety of issues, the trail provides an opportunity to learn and to put into practice many essential skills of trail maintenance from brushing back encroaching vegetation to Crosscut Sawyer skills to cut and clear fallen trees.  Crew members may work on tread and drainage repair, construction of small structures such as steps or create safe, innovative solutions for shallow water and deep gully crossings.   

BACKGROUND ---- Abandoned and almost forgotten, the Church Creek Trail was adopted and reopened by the Olympia Mountaineers, allowing hikers continued access to this multi-use trail in the southern portion of Olympic National Forest. From the trailhead, the path immediately enters a forest of giant silver fir, red cedar, and Douglas-fir, with lush vegetation at your feet.  In early June wildflowers are abundant and there are several waterfalls in deep canyons that intersect the trail. Wander among old-growth giants on this off-the-beaten-path trail on the southeastern side of the Olympics Forest (about 50 miles from Olympia


participants will earn:

leaders will earn:


Church Creek–Satsop Lakes

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

  • The Ten Essentials, day pack, snacks, water and lunch
  • Participants will need to dress for the weather, wear work or hiking boots  and be prepared for a weather change.   
  • Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) will be provided including hard hat, work gloves and eye protection.  Tools will be provided. 
  • Crew members can choose to bring their own PPE and hand tools suitable to the tasks described.
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