One of the most common questions we get from folks planning a visit to the area is about Olympic National Park weather conditions. Not too surprisingly, folks seem to think a rain forest is bound to be, well, rainy.
While we certainly get our fair share of precipitation throughout the year (and then some), we also receive a heapin’ helping of gloriously sunny days.
One of the reasons Olympic National Forest is so incredibly gorgeous is its thick, green blanket of vegetation. The Olympic Peninsula boasts an amazing diversity of plant life. Over 1,450 types of plants thrive here, from massive conifers to simple mosses.
Olympic National Park Weather
You don’t get lush green vegetation without some rain and the Olympic Peninsula sees plenty, averaging nearly 120 inches of rain a year. That’s a lot of rain, true – but don’t let it frighten you. That’s a YEARLY average. It doesn’t fall all at once, nor does it rain every day – or even every week.
Years ago, Outside Magazine featured this quote in their National Parks Companion:
”People actually steer clear of Olympic National Park because they fear being rained upon. Pity the fools.”
We couldn’t agree more. Like any area, there are better and worse times to visit Olympic National Park, but rain is no reason to avoid the Olympic Peninsula. Especially when the area enjoys so many months of beautiful, sunny weather!
Most folks plan their vacation in the Olympics for some time between mid-July and mid-August. While this is not a bad time to visit, it’s a much smaller window than exists for pleasant weather here. It also tends to be a more crowded time to visit.
In actuality, the window for good weather on the Olympic Peninsula is between the months of April and September. During this time, we receive an average of less than 28 inches of rain. No really, its true – take a look at the numbers below and see for yourself.
Rainfall Averages for Forks, WA
Jan – 18.27″
Feb – 12.72″
Mar – 13.54″
Apr – 9.21″
May – 5.79″
Jun – 3.9″
Jul – 2.48″
Aug – 2.6″
Sep – 4.02″
Oct – 11.81″
Nov – 18.62″
Dec – 16.77″
(monthly rain averages taken from www.usclimatedata.com)
Consequently, spring and fall are your best bets for visiting the Olympic Peninsula. You’ll enjoy mostly excellent weather and smaller to no crowds.
Olympic National Park Lodging
No matter what the Olympic National Park weather, Manitou Lodge is your Olympic Peninsula home away from home. Choose from lodge rooms, cottage rooms, cabins, and tents for the accommodations to suit your vacation style. Manitou Lodge remains your best choice for Washington coast lodging – book your stay today!