Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Campground Review: Dosewallips State Park Brinnon, WA

I drove north from the Columbia River to Olympia, WA where Camping Buddy Becky was visiting her parents.  After picking her up we drove the Tank north up scenic Highway 101 along the western side of the Puget Sound about 90 miles to Dosewallips State Park.  Dosewallips is derived from "Dos-wail-opsh", the name of a Twana Indian who legend says was turned into a mountain, forming ther source of the Dosewallips River which runs through the park.

The beautiful Dosewallips River.
The park has three separate camping areas, 40 full hook-up sites, a tent-only campground and another 100 no-hookup sites that are located adjacent to the Dosewallips River.

The Tank's full-service site in Dosewallips State Park.
Here's the Dosewallips data sheet:


Hookups:                                 20, 30 & 50 amp, water
Fire ring:                                  yes
Water Access:                         yes
Dump station:                          yes
WiFi:                                       no (a sign said yes but we couldn’t detect it)
Level sites:                              yes
Laundry:                                  no
Store:                                      just campground items and ice cream
Pool:                                        no
Shade:                                     yes
Verizon reception:                    4g, 2 out of 4 bars
Millenicom reception:               2 out of 4 bars
Cost:                                      $45/night for out-of-staters with hookups

The park extends on both sides of Highway 101 with camping on the west side of 101 and a beach fronting the Puget Sound on the east side.  At low tide the waterfront becomes a rich source of oysters and clams for residents and park goers.

Open season!

Oyster hunters with Puget Sound in the background.
There were two geocaches in the park and Camping Buddy Becky's sharp sight found both of them although we had to re-look for the first one after we realized the park extended to the east of 101 and there was a footbridge across the river.  Dosewallips State Park has 5500 feet of salt water shoreline and 5400 feet of freshwater shoreline (the Dosewallips River).  Salmon run up the river during their breeding season and there are steel head trout in it year around.  The park has 6 miles of trails through the pine forest surrounding it and we hiked most of them during our geocache hunt.  The trails and the grounds of the park themselves are extremely well maintained with grounds crew working on the landscaping both days we were there.

We greatly enjoyed our short stay at Dosewallips State Park.  Of all the state park systems I've stayed in over the last 13 months Washington's was the first to charge out of state campers more than state residents to camp, or maybe I just don't remember encountering the up-charge before.  At $45/night it's somewhat of a "premium" camping experience but Dosewallips State Park is really a beautiful campground.

Thanks for reading!