Olympic Mountains Flora  

 
 

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Olympic National Park, which comprises much of the Olympic Peninsula of Washington State, is home to a unique selection of plants, many of which are endemic to this mountain range.  All areas of the park are worth exploring and the alpine regions surrounding Deer Park, Hurricane Ridge, and Obstruction Point are particularly easily accessed.  From the parking lot at Hurricane Ridge, a gravel road carries along a ridge for about 14 km to the Obstruction Point parking lot which is at an elevation of 1860 meters.  In itself, this drive is well worth taking, particularly during the last half of July.  In the drier areas, meadows festooned with Campanula rotundifolia are found while in areas where the snow has recently departed for the remainder of the short summer, drifts of the glorious Erythronium montanum are found, sometime accompanied by its close relative E. grandiflorum although the latter species is more frequently associated with somewhat drier areas where it blooms much earlier in the season.


Here and there Campanula piperi will be spotted where it clings to its rocky crevasses.  Also, along this road, those with a good eye will pick out a white form of this Olympic endemic where, in a single location, it clings to its vertical home. 


Follow the links for descriptions and photos of hikes in the Olympic Mountains.


MOUNT TOWNSEND HIKE, Douglasia laevigata

ELK MOUNTAIN HIKE, Collomia debilis var larsenii

IMAGES OF SOME OLYMPIC ENDEMICS

Viola flettii

Campanula piperi

white form

Castilleja parviflora var olympica