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The Lena Lake Trail: Everything You Need to Know

The Lena Lake trail is a popular, beautiful and moderate hike that takes you to Lena Lake on the Olympic Peninsula. It offers a stunning view of the surrounding mountains, forests, and lakes. With a variety of trails and paths to choose from, the Lena Lake trail is the perfect way to explore the beauty of the Pacific Northwest.

In this blog post, we'll provide all the essential information you need to know before hiking the Lena Lake Trail and camping nearby.

Lena Lake

What You Need to Know

Lena Lake is a popular, scneic lake in Olympic National Park. The trail starts on Hamma Hamma Road and takes you around 3.5 miles to the lake and back. You'll gain around 1,300 feet and be at 2,000 feet of elevation maximum. The trek is not considered hard but the length may pose and issue for new hikers.

There is a campground at the lake as well, known as Lena Lake Campground. It's small and backpackers should expect no amenities. There are around 25 campsites around the lake that you'll have to choose from.

Looking across Lena Lake
Looking across Lena Lake

Activities Nearby

Near the trailhead are a few other adventures you might be interested in. This includes the Putvin Trail to Lake of the Angels (which is another popular and very hard backpacking destination) or the option to take the same trail further and try for the summit of Mount Stone (this requires mountaineering skills in winter and a willingness to scramble class 3 rock).

After visiting Lena Lake, you might want to drive north to Port Angeles where you can enjoy several other hikes, like the Lake Angeles Trail and enjoy Lake Crescent. There are numerous campgrounds in this area, including Salt Creek Campground and Fairholme Campground. You can also spend time at Salt Creek Recreation Area with its incredible views.

Lena Lake Trailhead

The Lena Lake Trailhead is located in the Olympic National Forest in Washington. It is a short drive away from the quaint towns of Hoodsport and Seabeck and is easily accessible by car. From the trailhead, hikers can begin their journey to the beautiful Lena Lake, one of the most popular destinations for outdoor recreation in the area.

The trailhead offers easy access to the trails that encircle the lake, making it a perfect starting point for those looking to take a hiking Lena Lake adventure. There is ample parking at the trailhead and nearby restrooms for visitors. Additionally, there are numerous campsites nearby that offer hikers the opportunity to stay overnight and explore the area further.

Once at the trailhead, hikers will begin their Lena Lake hike on a wide path that follows a stream. They'll be surrounded by lush forests as they make their way around the lake, with plenty of opportunities to take in the views along the way.

A log on Lena Lake
A log on Lena Lake

Hiking Lena Lake

The Lena Lake Trail is located in the Olympic National Forest and begins with a moderate, well-maintained climb through a second-growth forest populated with various plants. There are a few switchbacks that gain elevation very slowly, making this an easy start to the day. You'll encounter a few waterfalls, streams, and be following along Lena Creek for most of the hike.

As you gain elevation, the forest transitions to moss-draped old-growth. At 1.9 miles, hikers will find evidence of an earthquake and rock avalanche that occurred 1,300 years ago. There are a few crossings but there are bridges installed to make these easy.

Continuing north, hikers should stay left at the 2.7-mile signed junction, then turn right at the 3.2-mile signed junction. Here, several backcountry campsites and a composting toilet can be found at 3.4 miles. From this point, hikers can continue north along the trail to reach another junction, where they can turn left for Upper Lena Lake, and get a view of the lake from above, or right for additional backcountry campsites.

It's up to you how far you hike and where you want to turn around. Make sure to keep this in mind when calculating how much food/water you need.

Dark Lena Lake
Lena Lake on an overcast morning

Tips for a Successful Hike

1. Prepare Ahead - Get familiar with the Lena Lake Trailhead before you go, and make sure to plan your route in advance. Bring a map of the area, so you can easily find the lake and plan your return trip.

2. Wear Appropriate Clothing - When hiking at Lena Lake, wear layers of clothing to accommodate changes in temperature, especially during the spring and fall months. Make sure to bring along plenty of water and snacks, as well as an insect repellent.

3. Stay on the Trails - While exploring the trails around Lena Lake, it's important to stay on marked paths. Not only will this help protect the environment, but it also makes it easier to find your way back.

4. Leave No Trace - When visiting Lena Lake, always follow Leave No Trace principles. Pack out all trash and food scraps, avoid disturbing wildlife, and respect all flora and fauna.

5. Plan for Unexpected Weather - The weather in Washington can change quickly, so be prepared for sudden storms or cold snaps. Always check the forecast before heading out, and bring plenty of extra clothing and supplies if necessary.

A sunny day at Lena Lake
A sunny day at Lena Lake

Camping Near Lena Lake

There are two popular choices for camping near Lena Lake: the Lena Creek Campground near the trailhead and the Hamma Hamma Campground just a few miles away.

Lena Creek Campground is a small, quiet camping area near the Lena Lake Trailhead. It is often used by hikers hoping to make the trek to Lena Lake or to climb The Brothers, one of the most recongizeable mountains in the Olympics. It's only 1 minute away from the Lena Lake Trailhead.

It's a first-come-first-serve only campground that has 13 sites. It's about 7.7 miles up N Hamma Hamma Road and from Highway 101.

An open site at Lena Creek campground
An open site at Lena Creek Campground


  • Picnic tables

  • Trails

  • Water access

Hamma Hamma Campground

The Hamma Hamma Campground is another great choice that's very similar to Lena Creek in size. It also does not offer reservations. It's on the shore of the Hamma Hamma River and is open from Mid-May through September. It costs $14 per night. There are 15 sites, none of which are reservable. The sites can hold RVs up to 21 feet in length. It's only 4 minutes from the Lena Lake Trailhead.


  • Picnic tables

  • Trails

  • Water access

  • Paved road

  • Fire pits

  • Pull thru

  • Vault toilets

  • Pets are allowed

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