Viewed from Fairholme Beach at the western end of Lake Crescent, Mount Storm King sits squarely to the east, looming over Barnes Point like a 4,537-foot giant. The mountain rises from the level of the lake with a dramatic prominence, and it is visible from nearly any point on the lake. Naturally, the summit of Mount Storm King is an excellent spot for views on a clear day. You just have to be up for a little workout to get there.
At 4.4 miles round-trip, the trail isn't particularly long, but you will gain nearly 2000 feet from the trailhead at Storm King Ranger Station. Opened in 1905, the Storm King Ranger Station was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on July 13, 2007. It functions as the trailhead for this hike and for the popular Marymere Falls hike, and it is a great resource for up-to-date trail conditions and weather reports. From the ranger station, head south under Highway 101 as if you are headed to the falls; a sign clearly indicates the junction for the Mount Storm King Trail.
From here the climbing starts in earnest, and in a short time you will notice the lush vegetation of the Barns Creek Valley giving way to madrone and grasses that are more comfortable in drier soil. Occasional views open up opportunities to appreciate the surroundings and to catch your breath, but aside from a brief level portion of trail, the route continues to climb. You'll encounter significant ledges just about a half mile from the summit, where ropes along the trail are provided, but certainly be cautious particularly in windy/wet conditions. This is the best spot to grab views of Lake Crescent, as the views a little farther on bend more toward the Barnes Creek Valley. To the north you'll have incredible perspectives on Pyramid Mountain on the other side of Lake Crescent, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca is visible in the distance.