Distance: 3.4 miles
Time: 2 days, 1 night
Backpacking to Hole in the Wall is a fun easy overnighter (or day hike) that provides some beautiful views of the Oregon Coast. There’s towering rock formations in the shallows, dense forest touching the beach, and lots of driftwood (and driftwood forts!). This backcountry campsite is within the Olympic National Park boundaries, so permits are required and can be reserved up to 6 months ahead of time.
Parking is available at Rialto Beach, another popular Oregon beach that’s worth exploring, but typically very crowded. Hole in the Rock is then 1.5 miles down the beach, heading North. When we went, we were blessed with 2 sunny days in a row. The most important thing to note about this hike is that the hole in the wall can only be passed during low tide. Make sure to check the tide charts, because backcountry camping is on the other side of the formation.
You can also go above/around the Hole in the Rock instead of through. This section of the trail is worth checking out either way because it has sweeping views of the Olympic Coast from a higher vantage point.
Once past the wall, we were free to pick a spot to set up camp for the night. We also partook in making our own driftwood fort like many other campers on the beach. Seeing everyone’s forts was one of my favorite parts of this trip. I posted some photos of our driftwood fort in a National Parks Facebook group and was met with the wrath of several people (boomers) saying that we vandalized a National Park. I don’t agree with the sentiment since the driftwood was already there and we made our fort in place, and high tide breaks the forts down if you build them low enough. So your call if you want to participate in fort building or not!
To finish off the night, we let the campfire die out and then laid our sleeping bags in the sand without a tent and stargazed until we fell asleep. Let me know if you have any questions about this hike; I hope you have a good time out there!