The trail passes through high ridges and deep forested greenwood valleys which afford a grandiose view of the Olympic Mountain and the Cascade Range on the eastern section. The trail has a history of logging activities as you move along some asphalt and gravel-dirt roads. The trail only takes 40 miles to complete with a 3-hour drive. It traverses the east region of the Olympic Peninsula and the Olympic National Park, the southern region of Sequim Bay, the Olympic National Forest, and the counties of Clallam and Jefferson. The rest stops are at the campground of Dungeness Forks and the East Crossing but the latter had been closed to due to a landslide.
Check for this trail’s information from the Quilcene Office of the Olympic National Forest’s Hood Canal Ranger District where copies of the interpretive booklet of the Quilcene Auto Tour can be borrowed. For the trailhead going north, take the northern route half a mile on US 101 bridge that crosses the Big Quilcene River. Then turn west to the paved path of Penny Creek Road. If you go south as an alternate trail head, take 2.5 miles southeast of Sequim where you will then take a southern direction off the US Highway 101 before proceeding to the Palo Alto Road.
Start the drive by setting off at Penny Creek Road passing a quarry prior to a forest where tall trees provide shade to the passing vehicles. From US 101 take 1.4 miles along the road where the trail turns to a Y. The right section is the Penny Creek Road; yet go straight forward to the path that leads to Big Quilcene River Road (3057). It then proceeds to the National Forest on Road 27 and takes a southern direction toward the river. Then it makes a west turn prior to a north curve around the Quilcene Range. This section has been replanted with new trees after being logged for many years and it offers a view of the snowy Olympic peaks from a distance.
Around 6 miles off US 101 you will have a sight of the Big Quilcene River’s drainage and the glacier peaks of Buckhorn Wilderness. Proceed north on Road 27 and then it approaches a scenic view of Mt. Baker and the Cascades on the northeastern section. The trail then makes a descent onto Deadfall Creek where it then meets road 28 on the right.
Moving straight ahead, take the northwest route on Road 28 where you will see stop signs along the Quilcene Auto Tour which starts at Lords Lake. Take another 1.3 miles and you will reach Bon Jon Pass where you will take a right turn onto 2810 after Mt. Zion. Then proceed on Road 28 that takes you further onto Palo Alto Road. At this point, the road then takes you for another 7.8 miles onto US 101 which then marks the end of this scenic drive trail.