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August 10, 2010

Camping the 50 States: Tent Camping in Washington State

Filed under: Campground Destinations — Tags: — Simos @ 1:10 pm
Mount St. Helens, in Washington state

Mount St. Helens, in Washington state
Photo by: Martyn E. Jones (Stock Exchange)

Where can you see rain forests, mountains, and arid deserts peppered with terrific camp grounds, all situated along a beautiful, pristine frontier?

Well, good news: not all campsites matching this description are down in South America or somewhere around the world! In fact, if you answered Washington state, you’re exactly right!

And that makes Washington the next stop on AllCampgrounds’ 50 States Series, where we’ll begin, as we often do, with tent camping. RV camping is on the horizon for next time!

American Heritage Campground: Owned and operated by the Heck family for generations, American Heritage is one of the best-maintained parks around. Secluded among 25 acres of the region’s iconic Douglas firs, all campsites offer picnic table and fire ring, whether you’re there for tent camping or a visit in the old RV. Open between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends, summer heralds the arrival of daily activities for the whole family, and no matter what’s going on, you can always visit the outdoor swimming pool, paved bicycle course, and 5,000 square foot pole pavilion.

Cape Disappointment State Park: One thing you can say for Washington is that it has some of the most “interesting” park names. Luckily, you won’t be disappointed by this nearly 2,000 acre state park situated on the Long Beach Peninsula. With two full miles of beach on the Pacific Ocean, framed by two historic lighthouses, you can enjoy hiking and camping here all year around. Offering a terrific array of 137 tent camp grounds and 60 full hookup RV sites, it also boasts some unusual lodging: five primitive sites, three cabins, and fourteen yurts! (Yes, yurts!) Reservations are open all year!

Deception Pass State Park: Deception Pass has over 4,000 acres of land to explore, including significant amounts of both fresh and saltwater shore perfect for anglers of all experience levels. Boat rentals are available on the camp grounds, with three freshwater boat ramps and over 700 feet of saltwater dock. Catfish, cod, salmon, trout and others are prevalent, and Deception Pass is one of the only state parks anywhere I know that also encourages crabbing and clamming on its shores.

Howard Miller Steelhead Park: One of the smaller sites we’ve discussed here on AllCampgrounds, Howard Miller Steelhead still has a lot to recommend it! With ten tent sites and about 50 RV sites with various hookups (including three with none at all) you might not expect much from the place – but you can’t forget about the vibrant river rafting scene based out of HMSP. The park hosts literally thousands of private and commercial rafters every year, and has been operating since 1966; so it’s well known in the rafting community, and open year around. Interested in getting a start in rafting? Don’t forget to check out our earlier posts on choosing a raft and basic techniques!

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