Hike Shi Shi Beach to Point of Arches on Olympic Coast

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A hiker on Shi Shi Beach. Photo by David Krause

A hiker on Shi Shi Beach. Photo by David Krause

This 8-mile round trip out-and-back hike travels along the northern Olympic Coast among tide pools and sea stacks, down to Point of Arches. It can easily be done in a day or you can camp in one of multiple campsites along the beach or inland a bit in the forest. An added treat - make a driftwood fire in one of the provided fire rings or on the beach.

Although Shi Shi Beach is in the national park, the parking and trailhead access are on the Makah Indian Reservation.

Shi Shi Beach Map. Detail from official national park map.

The trail starts in the north near the fish hatchery. Your first two miles will be on boardwalks and trails through forest, but then the beach opens up to you with 2+ miles of rocky formations and large remnants of trees protruding up from the ocean. 

Turn around at Point of Arches to head back or connect with the Ozette Loop hike or on to Hole in the Wall near La Push at Rialto Beach.

Hiker on Shi Shi Beach

Hiker on Shi Shi Beach

Driftwood along Shi Shi Beach

Driftwood along Shi Shi Beach

Shi Shi Beach Safety

  • Know the tides.
  • Carry a map and tide chart to plan your route.
  • When camping on the beach, be sure to camp above the high tide waterline.

Before You Go

A Makah Recreation Pass must be purchased in Neah Bay prior to arriving at any trailheads on the Makah Indian Reservation. (makah.com/activities)

  • Makah Marina, 1251 Bay View Avenue, Neah Bay, WA 98357, 866-787-1900 – Open until 5:00 p.m.
  • The Museum at the Makah Culture and Research Center, 1880 Bayview Ave, Neah Bay, WA 98357, 360-645-2711 – Open until 5:00 p.m.
  • Washburn’s General Store, 1450 Bayview Ave, Neah Bay, WA 98357, 360-645-2211 – Open until 7:00 p.m.
  • Makah Mini Mart, 931 Bayview Ave, Neah Bay, WA 98357, 360-645-2802 – Open until 10:00 p.m.
  • Makah Tribal Center, 341 Bayview Ave, 360-645-2796 – Open until 5:00 p.m.
  • Hobuck Beach Resort, 2726 Makah Passage, Neah Bay, WA 98357, 360-645-2339

And if you want to camp, pick up an Olympic Wilderness Permit in person at the Wilderness Information Center (WIC) in Port Angeles or at the South Shore Lake Quinault Ranger Station. Call for hours. Before your trip, contact the WIC at 360-565-3100. If you are hiking south of Shi Shi beach & camping, reservations are required May 1 through Sept. 30.

Driving Directions From Neah Bay to Trailhead

Drive through town heading west along Bay View Avenue for 1 mile. Bay View Avenue becomes Cape Flattery Road if you follow the yellow lines on the pavement. The road will turn sharply left then after 0.1 miles turn sharply right once you get to the west side of the main downtown area. Follow the signs past the clinic for 0.1 miles and turn sharply left again and follow the road along the foot of Bahokus Peak. You will be on Cape Flattery Road. After 2.5 miles follow the signs and turn left on Hobuck Road across the Wa’atch River. At the first intersection after the bridge go straight and follow the signs for the Fish Hatchery. The parking area is located on the right side of the road.

Need an Olympic National Park map? Buy the National Geographic Trails Illustrated Olympic National Park map at REI.com. The map includes clearly marked trails and points of interest such as scenic views, campgrounds, trailheads, boat launches, picnic sites, ranger stations and more printed on waterproof, tear-resistant material.


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