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Alpinejo.tripod.com: Backcountry Trails Guide
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Washington Backcountry Trails

Ocean side trail


Rialto Beach to Sandpoint

Camp at Sunset

Definition of terms below
Location: Washington Coast
Directions: Get yourself over to the Olympic Peninsula and drive north on US 101 to xxxxx
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation +/- +400 Feet (- 400 feet out)
Distance: Our trip 24 Miles Roundtrip along ocean
Rialto Beach to Ellen Creek .8 mile
Rialto Beach to Hole in the Wall 1.6 miles
Rialto Beach to first good camp 3.25 miles
Rialto Beach to Chilean Memorial 3.75 miles
Rialto Beach to 2nd good camp 6.5 miles
Rialto Beach to Norwegian Memorial 10 miles
Rialto Beach to where we turned around 12 miles
Rialto Beach to Sand Point area 14.25 miles
Rating: 8 out of 10
Fishing: Did not try
Scenery: Pacific Ocean, sand, and rock gardens
Map: Printable Topo Map

Rialto Beach is a great hike any time of the year, especially if you manage to schedule your trip during nice weather. We started our hike out in the rain, it poured all day but being native Washingtonians we were not going to let this ruin a weekend outdoors. We were the only ones hiking on the beach this day (go figure).  You start out in some soft sand on a gradually sloping beach and this continues until you wade through knee deep Ellen Creek (After crossing Ellen Creek- the first place you can legally camp, no dogs are allowed past Ellen Creek according to Park Regulations). Soon you will hit Hole-in-the-Wall, truly a neat geologic formation if you time the tide right so you can scamper on through it. 

We were picking-them-up and laying them down, completely soaked we pressed on checking out the headland for possible camping spots. The are not that many... We passed one decent camp on the point before the Chilean Memorial, this camp has a table, chairs, fire pit and a smallish spot for a tent. The next 'camp' was about 40 feet south of the Chilean Memorial-very small and not very fancy. This hike up to Sand Point is all on the beach except for one small overland (30 feet up and over) just before the Cedar Creek (we camped just above this overland just inside the trees for 2 nights-great spot). There are quite a few other spots for camping up by the Norwegian Memorial, with big beaches.

We were fairly tired and found our high camp very accommodating, there was a nice runoff stream, a spot for the tent and spot for lounging. We set up camp and rested up for Saturdays journey up near Sand Point. We awoke to clear skies and some sunshine. We grabbed the fanny pack and we were off. There is lots of great beach to meander along. We passed the miles looking for ocean souvenirs and admiring the beauty of the Pacific. We started seeing some other folks near the Norwegian Memorial. We decided to turn back just before getting to Yellow Banks, making this a nice day hike.

Once back at our camp we enjoyed the sunshine by breaking out the frisbee and shorts and removing the boots. We played frisbee on our 'private beach' for a few hours until sunset.

  Note: there is not a whole lot of beach hiking it is mostly rock/log scrambles. I would not recommend this section of beach hiking, there is just sooo much rock and I really enjoy the sand.  I would recommend the Third Beach South section.

Make sure to take your frisbee! And don't forget put your gators on before hitting the sand or you will be sorry.  

Fees: Hiking fee- $5, Overnight backcountry fee $2 per night/per person

Other Links:

Harbor Tides
Saltwater Tides

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Although Alpinejo.tripod.com provides backcountry trail reports, you are responsible for your own safety. We will not accept any responsibility for injuries or rescues that may take place after reading this information.

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