Deception Pass State Park a worthy day-trip destination

Spurred by a recent Seattle Times article, I decided it was time to do more than drive through the very popular Deception Pass State Park with a varied topography far beyond just the view from the bridges. (It should be noted that before we moved here, Edmonds was “the town you drove through to get to the ferry”).

It’s only a little more than an hour to reach the northern end of the bridges, and you can park at the wayside and see the signature view from the bridges without a Discovery Pass. But you need one to see the full array of forests, lakes, ocean beaches and even a mild summit climb. There’s an almost-always-full campground, but we day visitors will have plenty of room to park, picnic and engage in fishing, swimming and even kayaking -the last best done with a guide in the channel. I was particularly pleased to see so many pacific madrone trees about.

I’d recommend returning to Edmonds by traveling along Whidbey Island and using the ferry to Mukilteo.  Give this a try while we still have such nice weather but,except for swimming perhaps, it’d be worthwhile any time of the year.

— Story and photos by Kevin O’Keeffe

  1. Returning via the Mukilteo ferry is a great idea because passengers ride for free! If you’re taking the family or going with a group, you can save a lot of $$ by doing this.

  2. Great article. Thanks Kevin.
    Many people who visit the park miss the portion of the park that is on the ‘North’ side of the bridge. Bowman Bay, and Rosario point which just a mile or so further down Rosario Road. Bowman Bay is spectacular! I often launch my sea kayak there and paddle north along the coast. Rosario has a wonderful loop trail with cliff views. Both places require a Discover Pass.

  3. Great story. As a former WSP&RC employee, I urge WA residents to support state parks by purchasing state parks license plates. Both attractive and a worthy cause.

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