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Hiking the Pacific Northwest: Olympic National Park and Juan de Fuca Trail

Program Number: 21435RJ
Start and End Dates:
8/14/2014 - 8/22/2014;
Duration: 8 nights
Location: Victoria, British Columbia
Price starting at: $1,995.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Walking/Hiking; National Parks; On the Road; Independent City Discoveries Activity Level: t (see description)
Meals: 22; 8 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches, 7 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

Join local expert naturalists on this hiking adventure exploring Vancouver Island’s west coast and Olympic National Park. Explore rainforests, wind-swept beaches and uninhabited rock islands on the western edge of British Columbia’s Vancouver Island. In Olympic National Park, study life born of eons of isolation by glacial ice, the waters of Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca to see plants and animals found nowhere else in the world.


• Join a coastal ecologist and venture onto the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail to Botanical Beach.
• Hike to Olympic Park's Hurricane Ridge for a taste of the high country and mountain vistas.
• Hike the Hoh Rainforest, where 12 feet of rain per year creates a world of huge trees and profuse greenery.

Activity Particulars

Hiking up to five miles daily at a moderate pace on coastal trails, beaches, mud, some slippery rocks, roots.

Date Specific Information


Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.

Itinerary Summary

Arrival Victoria, B.C., 1 night; coach to Port Renfrew, BC, 2 nights; ferry to Port Angeles/Olympic National Park, Wash., 5 nights; coach to Seattle; departure.


This provincial capital on Vancouver Island is blessed with spectacular scenery and a mild climate year-round. Home to Butchart Gardens and the Empress Hotel, Victoria is rich in First Nations history, marine coastal ecosystems, cultural attractions and European charm that dates to its years spent under British colonial rule.

Victoria: Downtown full service hotel. Port Renfrew: Motel near hiking trails. Olympic National Park: Cabins with common area; rooms shared by up to 4 people.
Meals and Lodgings
   Royal Scot Hotel and Suites
  Victoria, British Columbia 1 night
   Sooke Harbour Resort and Marina
  Sooke, British Columbia 2 nights
  Olympic National Park, WA 5 nights
 Royal Scot Hotel and Suites
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: With our convenient location in the heart of downtown Victoria, the largest city on Vancouver Island, BC, you can take a leisurely stroll along Victoria’s famous Inner Harbour, shop for treasures on Antiques Row or make business connections in Victoria’s nearby downtown core. Take a horse and carriage tour of Victoria with family and friends, create memories at Beacon Hill Park, and the Royal BC Museum is just around the block. Take in views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and the Olympic Mountains. There’s so much to see and do right at our doorstep! Enjoy yourself in the Royal Scot Hotel & Suite’s beautiful indoor pool, whirl pool, sauna and exercise room. Have some fun in our billiards room or gather with friends for a hand of bridge or a movie in the games room. We offer free wireless Internet access throughout the hotel. For your convenience our courtesy shuttle is available to take you anywhere within Victoria's downtown core. After a full day, rest easy in the cozy comfort of the Royal Scot Hotel & Suites and feel at home in downtown Victoria.
  Contact info: 425 Quebec Street
Victoria, BC V8V1W7 Canada
phone: 250-388-5463
  Room amenities: Our guest rooms include daily newspaper delivery, comfortable lounge chairs, mini fridges, coffee maker with complimentary coffee, tea and cookies, complimentary high speed wireless Internet, iron and ironing board and bathrobes.
  Facility amenities: Our Guest Service Amenities include: Business Services Available Coin-Operated Guest Laundry Courtesy Shuttle between the Hotel and downtown Victoria daily Indoor Swimming Pool Hydrotherapy Pool Exercise Room with a variety of Fitness Equipment Billiards and Games Room Hotel Parking (for a fee) High speed Wireless Internet in all Guest Rooms and Hotel Common Areas Hotel Gift Shop Jonathon's Restaurant
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: Call for availability & rates Contact hotel directly.
  Check in time: 3:00 PM

 Sooke Harbour Resort and Marina
Type: Lodge
  Description: Sooke Harbour Resort & Marina is the perfect year-round Oceanside getaway, nestled in the quaint village of Sooke amidst the diverse natural beauty of British Columbia’s Vancouver Island. Located just 35 minutes from Victoria, Sooke offers a little adventure for everyone. Stay with us at Sooke Harbour Resort & Marina and discover the best the Vancouver Island has to offer. Just steps from your fully furnished, fully equipped vacation home you will find chartered fishing, whale watching, scenic hiking, sea kayaking, golf and so much more.
  Contact info: 6971 West Coast Rd.
Sooke, BC V9Z 0V1 Canada
phone: 250-642-3236
  Room amenities: 2 or 3 bedrooms with queen sized beds with pillow top mattress’s and down duvets and a pull out sofa in living room. Full Gourmet Kitchen; fully equipped with granite countertops; open concept living and dining room area with electric fireplace, flat screen TV, surround sound and DVD player. 2 Private balconies; from master bedroom and dining/living room; washer & dryer. In room amenities include coffee maker, microwave, toaster, cookware & utensils, dishwasher, full stove & fridge, dining room table, hairdryer, iron and ironing board, alarm clocks, complimentary wireless Internet.
  Facility amenities: Sooke Harbour Resort & Marina seeks to provide all of its guests with a place they can call their own. A place with remarkable views, undefined luxury and relaxing comfort all located within the picturesque surrounding of beautiful Vancouver Island. Our helpful staff are here to make your experience as enjoyable as possible and to facilitate your every request. We can arrange for fishing guides and boat rentals, spa treatments, tee times and more. Just say the word and we will work hard to make it happen. Amenities include: 2 outdoor hot tubs Onsite 84 Slip Marina Meeting Room Access to Deep Freeze Complimentary Wireless Internet Free Local Calls Concierge BBQ, Washer & Dryer Locking Storage
  Smoking allowed: No
  Bathroom: En-suite plus main 4 piece bathroom with soaker tubs. Each bathroom has a bathtub and shower

Type: Lodge
  Description: Located in the Olympic Peninsula on the shores of Lake Crescent, NatureBridge offers meeting space for groups from 12 to 150. Our location is the ideal place for day, weekend, and summer conferences. Nature Watch is located on the shore of glacially carved Lake Crescent, participants can investigate old growth forests, wilderness coasts, and alpine peaks.
  Contact info: 111 Barnes Point Road
Port Angeles, WA 98363 USA
phone: 360-928-3720
  Room amenities: Our standard cabins are modern heated and air-conditioned cabins. Each cabin includes a central common space with four or six private rooms. Each room sleeps two to four guests. SPECIAL NOTE: Shampoo and soap for showers at NatureBridge must be brought by each individual/couple. The shared washrooms at NatureBridge provide liquid hand soap and paper towels at the sinks. Each guest is given a large bath towel for showers. You may wish to augment this large towel with your own hand towel and face cloth.
  Facility amenities: Although our lodgings are rustic, they are warm and comfortable. Guests enjoy hearty, delicious meals prepared and served in historic Rosemary Inn with views of Lake Crescent and Pyramid Peak. Fresh, local ingredients are used whenever possible; vegetarian and other meals for specific dietary needs with advance notice.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Bathroom: There is an adjacent bathhouse (male and female sides) with private restroom and showers and two, private, fully accessible bathrooms.
  Additional nights after: Call for rates Contact directly to enquire.

Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Arrivals and transfers to the hotel in Victoria, British Columbia. Dinner at the hotel. Check-in after 3:00 p.m. You will be staying at Royal Scot Hotel and Suites that night.
  End of Program:
Departures from Seattle, WA. Approximate arrival at SeaTac is 12:00 noon. You will be staying at NatureBridge the night before.
  Required documents:
The Participant Information Form is required.
  Parking availability:
Contact hotel
To Start of Program
  Location:  Victoria, British Columbia
  Nearest city or town:  Victoria
  Nearest airport:  Victoria International Airport (YYJ)
  From End of Program
  Location:  Olympic National Park, WA
  Nearest city or town:  Port Angeles
  Nearest airport:  Seattle, WA (SeaTac)
Travel Details



From Airport




Commercial Van/Shuttle
YYJ Shuttle (Gray Line)
phone: 855-351-4995
Advanced Reservations Required


Per Person/One Way:


Approximately $21 CDN + tax (subject to change)
Prices are subject to change.


Travel Time:


30 minutes 


YYJ Shuttle (operated by Gray Line) provides daily 1/2 hour service to/from the airport to all hotels and motels in Greater Victoria. Reservations are recommended. For more information visit or call 1-855-351-4995. Victoria International Airport (YYJ) has many direct flights from Air Canada (Jazz) which offers connections from across North America via Toronto, Montreal and Halifax.




From Ferry Landing




Public Transportation


Per Person/One Way:


$5 - $6 CDN (per taxi)
Prices are subject to change.


Travel Time:


5 minutes 




Walking distance to hotel.


The Victoria Clipper passenger ferry is from Seattle from Victoria. Travel time is 2 ½ hours. For more information, schedules and current fares please call 1-800-888-2535 or visit




From Bus Terminal




Public Transportation
City Bus


Per Person/One Way:


$2 - $3 Cdn
Prices are subject to change.


Travel Time:


5 minutes 


City bus or taxi from bus station to the hotel.




To Airport




Commercial Van/Shuttle


Per Person/One Way:


Transfer to Seattle/Sea-Tac included in program cost
Prices are subject to change.


Travel Time:


2 - 3 hours 




130 miles


A transfer to Seattle/Sea-Tac airport is included in the program cost. Approximate arrival at Sea-Tac is 11:00 a.m.

Driving Directions
  Different start and end locations Please note that this program starts in Victoria, British Columbia and ends in Seattle, Washington. For this reason, driving to the program is not recommended
Equipment Requirements: Hiking boots or light hiking shoes; hiking poles. Bring a sun hat with brim and chin strap; sun glasses, sun screen, comfortable walking shoes; a warm windproof, rainproof jacket and warm sweater; camera & binoculars. See Hiking Gear and Clothing List for more detailed information on hiking gear, suggested clothing etc.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival and Check-in/Welcome Dinner/Orientation
(Thursday, August 14)
 Afternoon: Arrivals to the hotel in Victoria, British Columbia.
 Dinner: Welcome dinner at the hotel followed by introductions, orientation and review of the program. Please be aware that program activities and scheduled times could change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.
Accommodations: Royal Scot Hotel and Suites
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Hiking: Botanical Beach/China Beach/Juan de Fuca Marine Trail
(Friday, August 15)

Note: Juan de Fuca Marine Trail [moderate section of 6 miles; approximately 4-5 hours, several short sections of up and downs]

 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Depart for Vancouver Island's West Coast and the Juan de Fuca; made up of Botanical Beach, China Beach and the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail. The area's geology makes it unique, which in turn provides for some fascinating biology. Tide pools abound along the shoreline, carved out of rock ledges and basins. The pools are alive with an incredible variety of plants and animals all interacting in the unique ecology of the inter-tidal zone. Vividly colourful Clams, barnacles, starfish, anenomes, sea cucumbers and a variety of crab make up a large part of the sea life.
 Lunch: Picnic lunch.
 Afternoon: Hiking continues on the Juan de Fuca Marine Trail.
 Dinner: Dinner in Sooke, BC.
Accommodations: Sooke Harbour Resort and Marina
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Hiking: East Sooke Park
(Saturday, August 16)
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Today we hike along the jagged headlands that rise above the crashing waves on the Coast trail of Vancouver Island's East Sooke Park. Where rainforest meets the sea, we will experience the lushness of mosses and ferns, as well as the windswept coastline bluffs against emerald green water. Along the Coast trail we will see evidence of the Coast Salish people in a few ancient petroglyphs bruised into rock
 Lunch: Picnic lunch.
 Afternoon: Hiking continues in East Sooke Park.
 Dinner: Dinner on your own.
Accommodations: Sooke Harbour Resort and Marina
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4: Transfer to Ferry to Port Angeles/Olympic National Park
(Sunday, August 17)
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Depart for Victoria to catch the COHO ferry to Port Angeles on the Olympic Peninsula. We will make a stop at Whitty's Lagoon for a short hike before catching the ferry.
 Lunch: Lunch en route.
 Afternoon: Board the ferry for Port Angeles, Washington. Port Angeles sits on the northern edge of Olympic National Park in Washington, an area that features an abundance of outdoor recreation, including hiking, biking and camping.
 Dinner: Dinner at the lodge.
 Evening: Olympic National Park - Changes Over Space and Time.
Accommodations: NatureBridge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Hiking: Rialto Beach Hike/Hole-in-the-Wall
(Monday, August 18)

Note: Level: Easy on sandy beach, moderate on slippery rocks while tidepooling and moderate to difficult on overland trail (often have ropes because very steep ascent and descent). Miles: 4 miles of beach hiking (round-trip) and a .1 mile overland trail. (advanced group could continue with more beach hiking another 2 miles). Total hiking: approximately 5 hours.

 Breakfast: Early departure (7:00 a.m.) with breakfast to go.
 Morning: Set out on a hike from Rialto Beach to Hole-In-The-Wall. The early departure is timed so that we arrive before the tide starts to change. Hike along the Coastal Beach and Headlands and keep your eyes peeled for Bald Eagles, Black Oystercatchers, and a dazzling array of invertebrate and seaweed diversity during a low tide. Flanked by sea stacks, lined with giant logs, windswept and strewn with cobblestones, Rialto has all the makings of an Olympic wilderness beach.
 Lunch: Box lunch.
 Afternoon: Hike and explore the tidepool at Hole-in-the-Wall, home to a dazzling array of invertebrate and seaweed diversity during a low tide; and a genuine natural sea arch carved by surf and wind in an out-of-the-way section of the wild Olympic Coast.
 Dinner: Dinner at the lodge.
Accommodations: NatureBridge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Hiking: Hurricane Ridge
(Tuesday, August 19)

Note: Level: Moderate with large steep north-facing snowfield (hiking poles recommended) and .6 mile “Switch-back” section with option of more hiking (2 more miles for advanced group). Miles: 3.6 miles (could do more) Pace: 1 hour a mile looking at wildlife and flowers at Hurricane Ridge. Total hiking: approximately 5 hours.

 Breakfast: Breakfast at the lodge.
 Morning: Route: Hurricane Ridge, Klahhane Ridge and one-way on Switchback Trail going down; advanced group can do an additional out and back route towards the Klahhane Ridge “saddle” east of Mt. Angeles (switchback up and down). Scan the sub alpine landscape for Mountain Goat, Olympic Marmot, Olympic Chipmunk, Black-tailed Deer, Wildflowers (endemics on this trail), Subalpine Spruce, Sooty Grouse, many birds.
 Lunch: Box lunch.
 Afternoon: Continue hiking at Hurricane Ridge. Take in the mountains, from Mount Baker in the Cascades, to Mount Garibaldi in British Columbia's Coast Ranges to the interior Olympic peaks and the azure waters of the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
 Dinner: Dinner at the lodge.
Accommodations: NatureBridge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Hiking: Hoh Rainforest
(Wednesday, August 20)

Note: Easy Grade next to River, moderate only because of distance we could go (shorter route option). Miles: 6.4 miles (round-trip) to reach this destination on the Hoh River Trail: “One Square Inch of Silence is the quietest place in the United States. It is 3.2 miles from the Visitor’s Center above Mt. Tom Creek Meadows. Total hiking: approximately 5 hours.

 Breakfast: Breakfast at the lodge.
 Morning: Very straight-forward out and back on the Hoh River Trail. This will be our longest hike in terms of distance but easiest grade. This Old-Growth Temperate Rainforest is full of Sitka Spruce, Western Hemlock, Red Cedar, Roosevelt Elk, Douglas Squirrel, Pacific Wren.
 Lunch: Box lunch.
 Afternoon: Continue the hike on the Hoh River Trail. The most famous of all the Olympic rain forests, the Hoh River Trail also provides access to Mount Olympus and the High Divide. Experience the old-growth grandeur and pure wildness of the Hoh Valley. Pass by colonnades of spruce and under awnings of moss-cloaked maples. Licorice ferns and club mosses cling to overhanging trees.
 Dinner: Dinner at the lodge.
Accommodations: NatureBridge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Hiking: Elwha River/Farewell Dinner
(Thursday, August 21)

Note: Level: Moderate with the gravel bar providing some interesting terrain challenges. The .5 mile switchback to Goblin Gates is steep but we will only go down and will come back up another route to form a loop. There are quite a few options for additional hiking (2 more miles for advanced group). Total Hiking: 5 miles (option for more).

 Breakfast: Breakfast at the lodge.
 Morning: Hike the Lowland Forest along the Elwha River, where the largest river restoration project in the US is underway. Hike among the Douglas Fir and look for Douglas Squirrel, Sooty Grouse, American Dipper, Spotted Sandpiper, & other birds. This hiking route is above the two dams but has nevertheless been impacted because of lack of fish passage for the last 100 years. Participants will see the former upper reservoir and dam site.
 Lunch: Box lunch.
 Afternoon: Hiking continues in the Geyser Valley, Rica Canyon and Goblin Gates. From its remote point of origin on the rugged southern slopes of Mount Barnes, practically at the exact center of the national park, the Elwha flows 45 miles to the Strait of Juan de Fuca, draining over 300 square miles of surrounding wilderness and passing through one of the largest tracts of old growth left in America.
 Dinner: Farewell dinner.
Accommodations: NatureBridge
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Program Concludes/Departure Transfer to Airport
(Friday, August 22)
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Our group transfer departs at 8:00 a.m. with drop off at SeaTac airport approximately 12:00 noon. This concludes our program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please be in touch via the Road Scholar Social Network, where you can share memories, pictures and comments. Best wishes for all your journeys.
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
  Victoria, British Columbia Empress Tea
Indulge in one of Victoria's grandest traditions - Afternoon Tea at The Fairmont Empress. For almost a century, the majestic lobby of this landmark hotel has played host to England's most beloved ritual - the taking of Afternoon Tea. Award-winning Pastry Chef D'Oyen Christie works his magic, ensuring an authentic and memorable experience - from your very first sip of our secret Tea at The Empress blend tea, right through to his freshly baked raisin scones served with clotted cream and strawberry preserves. Served in the relaxing atmosphere of the elegantly restored Tea Lobby, overlooking Victoria's sparkling Inner Harbor in the stately Harborside Room or under the hand-painted ceiling of the Library, Afternoon Tea is an absolute 'must do' for all who visit Victoria. For additional information, visit
  Legislative Tour
The Legislative Tour strives to provide an enjoyable and informative experience for all visitors focusing primarily on the role of the Legislative Assembly and MLAs and the history of both the province of British Columbia and the Legislative Buildings. The Legislative Tour Office staff promotes access to the Legislature and encourage a sense of pride and unity in the province. The goals are to foster an understanding of the legislative process, an awareness of B.C.'s political heritage and an appreciation for the beauty and significance of the Legislative Buildings. For additional information, visit
  Royal BC Museum
The Royal BC Museum Corporation is one of the foremost cultural institutions in the world. The museum was founded in 1886; the archives in 1894. Our archives, exhibits and galleries change and grow as our understanding grows, and we endeavor to share our knowledge in original and exciting ways. Each exhibit and gallery tells important stories about British Columbia and provides an engaging and thought-provoking window on the province's past, present and future. For additional information, visit
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List

Audubon Society Nature Guide to the Pacific Coast

Author: Bayard H. & Evelyn McConnaughey.

Description: Comprehensive field guide with color plates to the birds, plants, seashore creatures, fishes, and whales of the Pacific Coast from Alaska to southern California.

Western Forests

Author: Stephen Whitney

Description: A comprehensive field guide, fully illustrated with color photographs, to the trees, wildflowers, insects, birds, and other natural wonders of North America's western forests and woodlands, from Alaska to California and the Rockies.

Seashore Life of the Northern Pacific Coast: An Illustrated Guide to Northern California, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia

Author: Eugene Kozloff

Description: On the northern Pacific coast, from Monterey Bay to Vancouver Island, zoologist Eugene Kozloff explores the rich variety of seashore life of the northern Pacific coast. Hundreds of plants and animals that inhabit the rocky shores, sandy beaches, and quiet bays and estuaries are described and illustrated with encyclopedic thoroughness.

The West Beyond the West, A History of British Columbia

Author: Jean Barman

Description: PAPER, 834 PAGES, $32.95 A general history of the Canadian province from the 18th century to the mid-1990s. (Item no. CND116)

Vancouver Island Book of Everything

Author: Peter Grant,

Description: From Hudson's Bay outpost to gold rush fever and coal and lumber barons to political scandals Island-style to the mighty Douglas fir and Pacific salmon and profiles of Emily Carr, Cougar Annie and the Dunsmuir clan, no book is more comprehensive than the Vancouver Island Book of Everything. No book is more fun! Well-known Islanders weigh in on their favorite things about Vancouver Island. Robert Bateman shares his five most inspiring island locales

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