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High Steel Bridge

Hood Canal + Eastern Olympic Peninsula, Washington

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High Steel Bridge

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  • People walk along the High Steel Bridge on the Olympic Peninsula.- High Steel Bridge
  • The view of the South Fork of the Skokomish River over the High Steel Bridge.- High Steel Bridge
  • Looking down at the South Fork of the Skokomish River over the edge of the High Steel Bridge.- High Steel Bridge
  • The view over the High Steel Bridge to the South Fork of the Skokomish River..- High Steel Bridge
  • Signs warn of dangerous conditions below the bridge. If visitors choose to explore, they should do so very cautiously.- High Steel Bridge
  • Exploring the area under the bridge can be very slippery, but it offers interesting views of the bridge.- High Steel Bridge
  • A truck drives over the High Steel Bridge, Forest Road 2340..- High Steel Bridge
  • Light traffic makes the bridge an easy walk.- High Steel Bridge
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Scenic. Great views.
Cons: 
Can be crowded. Not much to explore aside from the bridge.
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Region:
Hood Canal + Eastern Olympic Peninsula, WA
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Contributor

The vertigo-inducing High Steel Bridge is steeped in local Hood Canal history and serves up an uncontested view of Vincent Creek Falls. Because it’s the tallest bridge in Washington State and one of the oldest, it regularly draws heavy crowds. But don’t let that deter you from taking the quick detour from Highway 101.

Built by Simpson Logging Company in 1929, it was part of the railroad that ran through the area until it was paved with concrete in the 1960s. Today it is part of the Olympic National Forest road network and provides access to some lesser-trodden hiking and camping.

The bridge itself is a marvel of engineering, leaping over the south fork of the Skokomish River a staggering 420 feet off the river and spanning a length of 685 feet from end to end. The thick stands of fir and cedar trees that blanket the hillsides seem to span forever into the horizon. In this busy area wildlife is relatively scarce, but keep an eye out for bald eagles, peregrine falcons, winter wrens, varied thrush, red tailed hawks, and other birds that frequent the skies around Olympic National Park. Incite envy in other travelers by bringing along a pair of binoculars.

It’s advised that visitors refrain from hiking along the adjacent hillsides or underneath the bridge. Though there are some obvious footpaths, the trails are not maintained and are rocky and slippery. There are numerous stories of tourists and locals alike taking scary falls in the area. And, as always, leave no trace.

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Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(11 within a 30 mile radius)

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(32 within a 30 mile radius)

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