Archive for the ‘Recreation’ Category

Walk away those Monday blues

March 30, 2015
Klickitat Canyon RMCA

A view of the Klickitat river as seen from Klickitat Canyon Natural Resource Conservation Area in Yakima County. Photo: DNR

Are you feeling that 3 p.m. energy crash? Reenergize by viewing some flowers and breathing fresh air. Along with a sunny Monday, today is National Take a Walk in the Park Day. It’s the perfect chance to stretch those leg muscles, grab a buddy, and visit your favorite park.

Walking isn’t just good for the body. In fact, many people believe it provides therapeutic benefits. Leisurely walks outside offer low-impact exercise and give tired eyes a reprieve from florescent lights and back-lit screens, relieving the body and mind of tension. Even if it’s just for ten minutes, walking outside on a trail or near a stream can leave you feeling rejuvenated and ready to face the rest of your day. DNR natural areas include some beautiful trails and walking grounds that are open to the public.

Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve 

Located in western Washington, the mysterious Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve (NAP) has roughly 637 acres of grassland and a diverse trail system including a paved, ADA-accessible loop and gravel paths branching out from paved loop. Visitors can schedule a group tour or explore the mounds on their own. A trip to the site’s interpretive center gives guests access to full color signs with information on geology, ecology, fire, and Native American use of the prairie.

Camas Mima Mounds

Blue camas growing at Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve. Photo: DNR

Visitors can also learn about different hypotheses regarding the formation of the mounds.

Protected features:

  • Roemer’s fescue
  • Mima Mounds topography
  • Garry oak woodland and savannah
  • Prairie dependent butterflies and birds
  • Douglas-fir forest

Klickitat Canyon Natural Resources Conservation Area 

For those interested in a more riparian atmosphere, consider heading to the Klickitat Canyon Natural Resources Conservation Area (NRCA), located near Yakima and Klickitat counties. This 1,516 acre conservation area, made up of a coniferous forest mixed with ponderosa pine and Douglas-fir, provides stunning views of the free-flowing Klickitat River. Take a walk along the river canyon or picnic on the shore while enjoying the view of Mount Adams rising in the distance.

Visitors can see a number of plant and animal species, including seven rare plant species and the endangered greater sandhill crane. The conservation area also houses black bears, bobcats, deer, and many species of bird including, occasionally, bald eagles.

For more information on these and other natural areas on DNR-managed land, visit our website. And remember, when visiting any site on state lands, it is important to bring your Discover Pass.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

Snoqualmie Corridor: Many ways to play

March 25, 2015

Ever taken a hike up Mount Si, mountain biked on Tiger Mountain, or watched hang gliders launch from Poo Poo Point?

Mt Si NRCA

Mt. Si Natural Resources Conservation Area in eastern King County is one of the many accessible areas managed by DNR. Photo: Tom Werner

Millions of people live within 30 minutes of the Snoqualmie Corridor, a recreation haven that includes 120 miles of trails, class III whitewater, class 5 rock climbing, and pristine hiking and picnicking areas.

Off-the-Grid Trail in Tiger Mountain State Forest.

Mountain biker enjoying the Off-the-Grid Trail in Tiger Mountain State Forest. Photo: Robin Fay.

All of these opportunities — and more — just got a lot better with DNR’s adoption of the Snoqualmie Corridor Recreation Plan, which will enable DNR to further develop recreation opportunities in the corridor’s 53,500 acres of DNR-managed natural areas and state trust lands.

In partnership with volunteers, partners, and local communities, DNR will use this plan to guide recreation in the corridor for the next 10 to 15 years.

For more information, take a look at the Snoqualmie Corridor Recreation Plan.

To stay up-to-date with DNR’s recreation program, subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

Mark your calendars: Join us for the 10th annual Great Gravel Pack-In

March 21, 2015
Gravel Pack-in

Volunteers, horses, and mules pack in gravel to repair trails in Capitol State Forest at the Great Gravel Pack-In in 2009. Photo: DNR/Randy Warnock.

This year marks the 10th annual Great Gravel Pack-In, which draws volunteers from many recreation groups, including horseback riders, ORV riders, mountain bikers, and hikers to give back and care for Capitol State Forest trails.

Join DNR and partners from the Back Country Horsemen of Washington, Washington ATV Association, and Evergreen Sportsmen’s Club to help care for Capitol State Forest trails Saturday, March 28.

The Back Country Horsemen of Washington first started the event in 2005 as a way to train and showcase their animals’ abilities.

Volunteer efforts from ATV riders followed, and what started as an 18-person party has grown to an average of 150 people annually.

With the combined efforts from hikers, horseback riders, mountain bikers and ATV riders, about 12 miles of trail have been graveled in this event’s 10-year history.

Ed Haefliger, one of the founders of the of the Great Gravel Pack-In announces the tasks to the equestrian group. Photo: Diana Lofflin

Ed Haefliger, one of the founders of the of the Great Gravel Pack-In announces the tasks to the equestrian group. Photo: Diana Lofflin

Want to join the fun?
8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 28
Mima Falls Campground, Capitol State Forest

Directions
From I-5, turn onto WA-121 / Maytown Road SW going west toward Littlerock.
In 3.6 miles turn left onto Mima Road SW.
In 1.3 miles turn right onto Bordeaux Road SW.
In .7 miles turn right onto Marksman Street SW.
In .9 mi arrive at Mima Falls Campground near Marksman Street SW, Olympia, WA 98512.

For more information check out a flier for the event, or contact Nick Cronquist by phone at 360-480-2700 or by email at nick.cronquist@dnr.wa.gov.

To stay up-to-date with DNR’s recreation program, subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Rec alert: Temporary closure at Lower Trailhead parking lot in Blanchard Forest

March 19, 2015

Heading to the Blanchard Forest near Bellingham? The Lower Trailhead parking lot will be temporarily closed starting 8 a.m. Monday, March 23 through 3 p.m. Thursday, March 26 as DNR staff re-gravel the parking area.

Hikers enjoy the view from Samish Overlook, the gateway to Oyster Dome Trail. Photo: Diana Lofflin, DNR

Hikers enjoy the view from Samish Overlook, the gateway to Oyster Dome Trail. Photo: Diana Lofflin, DNR


During the closure, please head to the Upper Trailhead parking lot to explore DNR recreation opportunities in the Blanchard Forest Block.

Lily Lake campground is a backcountry campground with six campsites in  the Blanchard Forest. Photo: DNR

Lily Lake campground is a backcountry campground with six campsites in the Blanchard Forest. Photo: DNR

The Upper Trailhead provides the main access for non-motorized recreation in the southern portion of the Chuckanut Mountains.

The trailhead ascends to backcountry campgrounds at Lilly and Lizard Lakes, as well as much of the largely connected non-motorized trail system in Blanchard Forest.

Trails provide views of Samish Bay, the San Juans, and pristine forest lakes.

For more information about the temporary closure, contact the DNR’s Northwest Region office at 360-856-3500.

To stay up-to-date with DNR’s recreation program, subscribe to our e-newsletter.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

Project at beach recreation site helps restore healthy vegetation

March 9, 2015
Washington Conservation Crews help remove English Holly from Upright Channel. Photo: DNR

Washington Conservation Crews help remove English holly from Upright Channel. Photo: DNR

Ever visited Upright Channel Day-Use and Beach Access?

The popular DNR-managed site on Lopez Island is looking its best after DNR staff and Washington Conservation Corps crews completed a major invasive species removal to English holly growing there.

DNR's Upright Channel, a popular day-use recreation site on Lopez Island, includes trails, beach access and a picnic area. Photo: DNR

DNR’s Upright Channel, a popular day-use recreation site on Lopez Island, includes trails, beach access and a picnic area. Photo: DNR

The project, coordinated by DNR’s recreation and silviculture programs, will help provide access to the site for visitors to enjoy for years to come.

DNR’s silviculture (tree planting) program manages DNR forest landscapes, for products and ecosystem services, such as wildlife habitat and water quality.

Rob Crawford, a crew supervisor with Washington Conservation Corps, helps to remove holly from Upright Channel. Photo: DNR

Rob Crawford, a crew supervisor with Washington Conservation Corps, helps to remove holly from Upright Channel. Photo: DNR

This project follows efforts from DNR’s dedicated volunteers. Upright Channel work party volunteers have helped to remove rotting railroad ties, trim vegetation and do general site clean-up to the beach-access site.

Upright Channel is a 20-acre day-use park, which includes trails, beach access and a picnic area.

For more information, visit DNR’s recreation Web page.

To stay in the loop about all things DNR, sign up for all of our e-newsletters.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

Get out and enjoy DNR-managed land this weekend

February 20, 2015
Lummi Island NRCA by Jason Goldstein/DNR

Lummi Island NRCA by Jason Goldstein/DNR

 

Mild winter weather and the sunshine over Presidents Day weekend is making February feel like the beginning of spring. With more than 2.2 million acres of state trust land open for recreation and public access opportunities, the possibilities are endless. The Lummi Island Natural Resource Conservation Area (NRCA), pictured above, is a 661-acre conservation area in northern Puget Sound. It includes forested shorelines with steep, rocky headlands, a forest dominated by old growth Douglas-fir, and a small marine park available for boaters. To find information on this and other sites, including any temporary closures, visit our recreation page.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

Rec alert: Temporary Monday – Thursday closure at McLane Creek for trail improvements

February 18, 2015
McLane Creek Washington Conservation Corps

Washington Conservation Corps (WCC) crews work on the boardwalk at McLane Creek. Photo: DNR

McLane Creek, a popular Capitol State Forest day-use site, will be closed Monday through Thursday for about three weeks as DNR staff and Washington Conservation Corps (WCC) crews are hard at work strengthening structures and improving trails there.

Aquatic Land Enhancement Account (ALEA) grants from the Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office (RCO) are funding these improvements, which will maintain access to this well-loved site for years to come.

McLane Creek

McLane Creek is a popular day-use site in the Capitol State Forest. Photo: DNR

We apologize for the inconvenience, and hope you will take time to visit other Capitol State Forest sites. During this time, McLane Creek is still open Fridays and weekends.

Before heading out, please check what sites are open and closed on DNR’s Web page.

We invite you to stay connected through DNR’s Recreation News e-newsletter.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

DNR honors volunteer stewardship

February 15, 2015

This week our friends the in the northeast region and partners at the Okanogan Valley Chapter of Back Country Horsemen of Washington lost a dear volunteer, David Swanberg.

Cold Springs, Loomis State Forest, Okanogan County

Loomis State Forest, near Loomis, offers many recreation opportunities in DNR’s Northeast Region. Photo: DNR

David dedicated much of his time caring for DNR trails, including those in the Loomis State Forest.

We honor David’s stewardship and the contributions so many volunteers make to maintain our state’s public lands and trails.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with DNR

February 13, 2015

This year, make lasting memories with quality time together at one of our most-loved recreation sites.

A gorgeous view from Tiger Mountain NRCA. Photo DNR

A gorgeous view from Tiger Mountain NRCA. Photo DNR

Tiger Summit, Tiger Mountain State Forest, near Issaquah
Tiger Mountain is a unique, multi-use destination located close to Seattle. It offers exciting mountain bike trails, diverse hiking experiences, paragliding launches and horseback riding opportunities.

DNR staff, Evergreen Mountain Bike Alliance, and volunteers created new mountain bike trails in 2012 and have continued to add more since.

Samish Bay Overlook

View of Samish Bay from the Samish Overlook and Day-Use Area, managed by DNR. Photo DNR.

Samish Overlook, Blanchard Forest, near Edison
At an elevation of 1,300 feet, Samish Overlook, offers stunning views of the San Juan Islands and Skagit Valley, and provides access for hikers, equestrian riders and mountain bikers to explore the Blanchard Forest Block.

The overlook is also a popular jumping-off spot for hang gliders and paragliders. Each year, an estimated 40,000 visitors come to Samish Overlook to picnic and enjoy the view. Visitors can catch a glimpse of the same view as they move north up the trail to Oyster Dome or east through the Chuckanut Mountains.

Washington State trust lands on the Olympic Peninsula. Photo: DNR

Washington State trust lands on the Olympic Peninsula. Photo: DNR

Coppermine Bottom, Olympic Peninsula
Along the Clearwater River, Coppermine Bottom Campground offers its visitors a secluded and primitive campground to enjoy the Olympic Peninsula.

Many of the sites have access or trails to the river, which is banked with cottonwood trees. The campground also offers visitors a hand-carried boat launching area for fishing.

Tunerville Campground, Pacific Cascade Region, near Naselle
Tunerville campground, located northeast of Naselle in Pacific County, is highly valued among equestrians.

This wooded campground has four camp sites, two spurs for parking, two corrals and one vault toilet.

Before you go, visit DNR’s guide to recreation to keep trips safe and fun. To stay in the know about all things DNR recreation, sign up for DNR Recreation News e-newsletters.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter Join in the DNR Forum

DNR is taking applications for 2015 camp hosts

February 8, 2015

Are you a professional, friendly, and polite person who wishes you could go camping for weeks on end? Do you have a properly insured home, camper or travel trailer that supports comfortable camping in rustic, natural areas? DNR might have just the thing for you!

Merrill Lake

Become a camp host for DNR and enjoy a summer basking in nature. Photo by: DNR

We’re currently taking applications for campground hosts, who help provide a positive, safe, and informative experience for visitors to DNR campgrounds statewide.

Host responsibilities include:

  • Be professional, friendly, and polite when interacting with the public.
  • Provide rules and information and rules to campers and visitors.
  • Register overnight campers.
  • Patrol campground and recreational areas.
  • Regularly inspect campground restrooms, picnic shelters, campsites, campfire pits and boat launch areas.
  • Report vandalism, illegal or abusive behavior.

Pick your site today!

Douglas falls campground

Douglas Falls Campground offers a volunteer camp host site, campsites and a day-use area. Photo: DNR

Douglas Falls Campground, Northeast Region
This 120-acre park site was deeded to DNR by the Stevens County Pomona Grange in 1975. The park offers day use areas, a group shelter with ball fields, a viewing area of Douglas Falls, and walking trails with a foot bridge across Mill Creek.

Starvation Lake Campground

Starvation Lake Campground is located just 15 miles from Colville in Stevens County and is managed by the Washington State Department of Natural Resources. Photo: DNR

Starvation Lake, Northeast Region
A quiet, 15-acre campground adjacent to Starvation Lake. Enjoy this select fishing lake nestled between private and state trust lands within close proximity of the Little Pend Oreille Wildlife Area. Activities in the area include hiking, bicycling, boating, fishing, hunting, bird watching, and other wildlife viewing.

Ahtanum State Forest view

View of Mount Rainier from Ahtanum State Forest. Photo: DNR

Ahtanum Campground, Ahtanum State Forest, Southeast Region
Located in the Ahtanum State Forest and nestled next to the pristine North Fork River, the Ahtanum campground is a highly used recreation area hosting off-road recreation, hiking, and horseback trails during the recreation season. Winter recreation opportunities include snowshoeing, sledding, cross country skiing, and snowmobiling.

Want to apply? Visit DNR’s campground host Web page for more information and a list of available camp host sites.

Follow DNR on: Facebook Fan See us on Flickr Watch us YouTube Follow us on Twitter Follow DNR Fire Twitter

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 262 other followers