As we all know, hiking and camping season is just about to start. If you’re making plans and trying to figure out where to go, this year’s lineup of destinations might be a little different. Why? Because on May 7th a fire unfortunately destroyed the historic Hurricane Ridge Day Lodge and as a result, officials have closed the area indefinitely.

The cause of the fire that destroyed the Hurricane Ridge Day Lodge (Visitor Center) has yet to be determined and is still under investigation. If you’re familiar with the lodge you will likely know that the structure originally built in 1952 was undergoing major renovations and was set to reopen this year.

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hurricane ridge
Photo via National Park Service

The National Park Service has decided to close the area indefinitely while a cause is determined and until the area is safe for the public. At this time, the park does not have an estimated reopening date for Hurricane Ridge.

If you were planning on hiking or camping in the area keep in mind that snow still covers much of the area in and around the ridge. If you are experienced, you can still access areas near Hurricane Ridge, but the Hurricane Ridge Road beyond the Heart O’ the Hills campground and the Hurricane Ridge area are closed to the public.

While a devastating loss for the park’s history and for hikers, much of Olympic National Park is still open. Keep in mind, the park is home to two of the best “secret beaches” in the US. So this year might just end up being the perfect year to explore other parts of the park that you have yet to see.

We will keep you updated with any and all relevant information as it becomes available.