Jefferson County, located in the north-western Washington State, is a part of the Puget Sound region of the United States. The very popular Hood Canal Bridge links Jefferson County to Kitsap County. Port Townsend is the largest and the only incorporated city in the county.
Spread over 2185 square miles, some of Jefferson County is located within the Olympic National Park and Olympic National Forest. As a result, the county has a diverse topography that includes forests, wildlife, mountains, lakes, beaches, ocean, and dozens of structures that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Washington State Parks Discover Pass
Washington State Parks require a Discover Pass for car access to state parks and recreational areas. The pass can be purchased online or at automated stations as many of the state parks.
The annual fee for the Discover Pass is $30, plus a $5 transaction fee, and is good for two vehicles. A day pas is $10, plus a $1.50 transaction fee, and is valid only on the date specified. Various free visit days are scheduled throughout the year.
If you do not require vehicle access, some state parks have free parking and you can walk or hike for your visit.
State Parks in Jefferson County
There are 10 Washington State Parks in Jefferson Country, out of the more than 100 in the state. This guide will help you find the best choices for your Washington State park getaway.
Anderson Lake State Park
Anderson Lake State Park is a day-use public recreation area located south of Port Townsend on the Quimper Peninsula. The park spans 496 acres of woods and centers around the 70-acre Anderson Lake.
Recreational activities at Anderson Lake State Park include trails for hiking, biking, horse-riding, non-motorized boating, and fishing. The park has picnic tables installed along the Anderson Lakeshore, perfect for a day picnic. The lake offers seasonal lowland fishing of trout and other freshwater fish.
For the past few years, the lake has closed for access during the spring months due to toxic algae blooming issues in the water. It is advisable to check for lake closures before visiting the park.
Location: 1061 Anderson Lake Road, Chimacum
Hours: During summer, the park is open from 8 am to dusk. The park is closed in winter from November to March.
Dosewallips State Park
Dosewallips State Park is located where the Dosewallips River meets the west side of Hood Canal. Its location means it has both salt and fresh water shorelines, providing good fishing in both. The Dosewallips River is home to oysters and seven species of salmon.
Recreational activities at Dosewallips State Park include boating, swimming, clamming, crabbing, hiking, and picnicking. Birding and beach exploration is also popular. The park has year-round camping in tents and cabins and is a great base from which to explore the Olympic Peninsual.
Location: 306996 Highway 101, Brinnon
Hours: Dosewallips State Park is open from 8 am to 10 pm during summer and from 8 am to 5 pm during winter.
Fort Flagler State Park
Located on Marrowstone Island, towards the southeastern part of Port Townsend, Fort Flagler State Park is a former United States Army fort. The park sits on a high cliff that overlooks Puget Sound and is surrounded by a saltwater shoreline on three sides. You’ll get gorgeous views of Whidbey Island, the Olympic mountains, and the Cascade range.
Along with Fort Worden and Fort Casey, Fort Flagler guarded the Puget Sound during World War I, World War II, and the Korean War. The area was purchased and converted into a state park in 1955. Guided tours of the historical fort are offered at the park.
Recreational activities at Fort Flagler State Parkinclude camping, biking, picnicking, swimming, hiking, boating, fishing, clamming, and crabbing to its visitors. The park also has an environmental learning center and museum.
Location: 10541 Flagler Road, Nordland
Hours: Fort Flagler State Park is open from 6:30 am till dusk during summer and from 8 am till dusk during winter.
Fort Townsend State Park
Fort Townsend State Park is a 367-acre park located towards the south of Port Townsend Bay on the Olympic Peninsula. Built in 1856, the park has a rich military history and was operated as a US army site until it was destroyed in a fire in 1895. The Fort Townsend state park occupies a part of the site of the actual fort. Only a part of the fort remains today, however, you can still visit it.
Recreational activities at Fort Townsend State Park include hiking and cycling trails, boating, fishing, camping, and crabbing. A self-guided nature trail and a trail highlighting historical events are located within the park.
Location: 1370 Old Fort Townsend Road, Port Townsend
Hours: Fort Flagler State Park is open from 8 am till dusk during summer. The campgrounds are closed during winter, October 1 to April 15.
Fort Worden State Park
Fort Worden State Park is located in Port Townsend, Washington. The fort was constructed to protect Puget Sound from invasion by the sea and was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1976.
The 432-acre Fort Worden State Park opened in 1973 and is popular with visitors who enjoy its high bluffs and sandy beaches. The park houses the Puget Sound Coast Artillery Museum and the Point Wilson Lighthouse, both open to visitors.
Recreational activities at Fort Worden State Park include hiking trails, saltwater fishing, crabbing, water skiing, boating, diving, camping, picnicking, mountain biking, kayaking, bird-watching, and swimming. Foret Worden also has a conference and event center and you can book a stay in former officer quarters.
Location: 200 Battery Way, Port Townsend
Hours: Fort Worden State Park is open year-round for day use and overnight stays.
Additional Fees: The Coast Artillery Museum’s entrance cost is $4 for adults, $2 for children above five years, and $10 for the family package.
Kinney Point State Park
Kinney Point State Park is located at the southern tip of Marrowstone Island. The 67-acre park is secluded and accessible only by boat. Only sail and human-powered boats are permitted, no motorized boats allowed. Pick up a tide table before heading there – the beach disappears at high tide, so timing your visit is important.
Recreational activities largely center around the water, and include boating, clamming, crabbing, and saltwater fishing. Visitors can also enjoy wildlife viewing, searching for fossils, and hiking. Campsites are available.
Hours: Kinney Point State Park is open throughout the year from 6:30 am till dusk.
Mystery Bay State Park
Mystery Bay State Park is a day-use park located on the west end of Marrowstone Island. The 18-acre park lies north of Nordland on Flagler Road and is reachable by land and water. The saltwater shoreline on the Mystery Bay offers views of the Olympic Mountains.
Recreational activities at Mystery Bay State Park include boating, clamming, crabbing, saltwater fishing, picnicking, beach exploration, bird watching, and oyster harvesting. No camping facilities are available. You can book a campsite at nearby Fort Flagler State Park or if you’ve arrive by boat, there are year-round moorage facilities.
Location: 7875 Flagler Road, Nordland
Hours: Mystery Bay State Park is open from 6:30 am to 10 pm during summer and from 8 am to 5 pm during winter.
Pleasant Harbor State Park
Pleasant Harbor State Park is located two miles south of Dosewallips State Park in Brinnon. This one-acre marine park is a moorage facility only and offers no other services.
Recreation activities at Pleasant Harbor State Park are water-based and include fishing, shrimping, crabbing, boating, and rafting. It’s also a prime spot for diving, with octopus and sea stars in residence.
Location: U.S. Highway 101, Brinnon
Hours: Pleasant Harbor State Park is open from 8 am to 10 pm during summer and from 8 am to 5 pm during winter.
Shine Tidelands State Park
Shine Tidelands State Park is located seven miles south of Port Ludlow towards the Squamish Harbor entrance near the Hood Canal Bridge. The 249-acre day-use park lies along the Bywater Bay.
Recreational activities at Shine Tidelands State Park include fishing, birdwatching, beach exploring, kayaking, and wildlife viewing. At high tide, very little beach is available. During low tide, threre are abundant opportunities for shellfish harvesting. No campsites are available.
Location: Shine Tidelands State Park Road, Port Ludlow
Hours: Shine Tidelands State Park is open from 8 am till dusk year round.
Triton Cove State Park
Triton Cove State Park is located at the southeastern corner of Jefferson County towards the western shore of Hood Canal, right off of Highway 101. It is a 29-acre day-use park that can be reached using public transportation if you don’t have a car or a boat. Its location makes it a popular spot at sunrise.
Recreational activities at Triton Cove State Park include boating, picnicking, fishing, shellfish harvesting, and bird watching. The park has an ADA-compliant boat launch with access to shore fishing.
Location: 61 Handley Lane, Brinnon
Hours: The Triton Cove State Park is open from 6:30 am till dusk during summer and from 8 a, till dusk during winter for day-use and watercraft launch.
Licenses are required for fishing and shellfishing. These are issued by the Washington State Department of Fish and Game and are available online and at various locations around the state. Fees vary. The licensing requirement is enforced and fines imposed.
Washington State is known for its green, lush outdoors (we can thank all of the rain for that). These 10 is beautiful, and if you are anything like us, these 10 Washington State Parks in Jefferson County should whet your appetite to explore more of the state.
For information about the National Parks in Washington State, check out this information.
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