Surfing may not be the first thing that comes to mind for most when they think of the Olympic Peninsula. Yet people have been surfing La Push and Neah Bay for years. Best of all? La Push is less than 8 miles from Manitou Lodge!
Surfing in the PNW has been a thing for just about as long as surfing itself has been a thing. Our region’s colder waters means we’re not quite as popular a surfing destination as some others I could name but it definitely has its enthusiasts. Recent years has seen the sport growing in popularity both with locals and visitors to the area.
The two most popular spots in our immediate area are La Push and Neah Bay.
Surfing La Push
“La Push” comes from the French “la bouche,” meaning “the mouth,” which is appropriate. It is here that the mouth of the Quillayute River spills into the Pacific. As I said above, it is quite near Manitou Lodge. Less than 15 minutes down the road!
La Push is one of the most popular surfing areas on the Peninsula, offering fun for surfers of all experience levels. Summer is the most popular season, of course, but fall and winter months see their share of surfers, too. Hoping to avoid crowds during your summer surf? Your best bet are weekdays.
Local experts say the best La Push surfing is at mid-tide. Point break, right and left. Try the beachbreak on the north side of the rivermouth for winter barrels. There have been shark sightings, so be vigilant. Also watch for rip tides. Winds can sometimes make it tough to stay upright.
The annual Surf Frolic is held here in January, when winter waves can reach from 5 to 7 feet! Surfing should be limited to experienced surfers at this event.
Surfing Neah Bay
Neah Bay is quite a bit farther North of us, about an hour and half away and near the very tip of the Olympic Peninsula.
Neah Bay is an excellent spot for experienced surfers looking for an exciting challenge. The beaches here offer up consistent swells about 150 days a year. Autumn and winter are considered the best surf seasons. Surfing is best at mid-tide, when offshore winds are coming from the south and groundswells from the northwest. Beach break, left.
Regular rip tides and a very rocky bottom make the bay fairly dangerous so use caution. The distance from the trailhead to the beach is a bit of a hike. You will be carrying your board and gear quite a long way.
La Push Lodging
Manitou Lodge offers a variety of unique lodging options. Choose from our Main Lodge or Cottage Rooms for indoor comforts. Prefer something closer to the great outdoors? No problem! We also offer Cabins & Tents with access to our spacious outdoor shower and portable toilets. We even have fully-equipped and tent sites, set-up and with bedding included. Make the most of your PNW getaway with a stay at Manitou Lodge. Check Availability now!