It’s June – Time to Get Outdoors!
Posted June 18, 2021 in Special Features
Looking for an excuse to play?
June gives us the perfect opportunity as it’s National Great Outdoors Month.
Here in the Pacific Northwest, we have so many great options for outdoor activity, you can easily find one that matches your age, skill level, or even attitude! Hiking, biking, camping, walking, or just sitting quietly in nature all have great psychological and physical benefits. Keep in mind, many sites offer ADA amenities so the whole family can enjoy. Whether you travel to a site or go right down the block, the trick is to get out the door.
Here are some options to consider for Great Outdoors Month. May sure you check web sites before heading out to see if there are any visitor restrictions.
National Parks in Washington
There are over 400 designated National Parks in the U.S, and three are right here in Washington: Olympic, Mt. Rainer, and North Cascades – all of which offer recreation opportunities for camping, hiking and climbing in some areas.
There are also some National Monuments Trails and Historic Sites worth noting:
San Juan Island National Historical Park, Mount St. Helens Volcanic Monument, and Fort Vancouver, here in Vancouver. All three feature outdoor activities and visitor centers, but check ahead for hours and restrictions.
State Parks in Washington
Our state parks are some of the best in the nation – last year alone saw more than 37 million visitors. That’s 10 million more than 2019 – even with COVID-19 closures. Battleground Lake, Paradise Point, and Reed Island (by boat only) are right here in Clark County. They are especially popular this time of year, and may require a state Discovery Pass for access.
Clark County Parks
We are extremely fortunate to have so many parks in our county. Most are day-use only, but offer a wide array of activities – hiking, biking, swimming. Currently, picnic shelter day use permits are suspended through 2021. There are parking fees at some sites. Our favorites are Captain William Clark right on the Columbia, and Lacamas Regional Park on Round Lake which offers an extensive network of trails – some leading to nearby Heritage Park on Lacamas Lake.
Neighborhood and Off-Leash Dog Parks
You may not have to go far to find an outdoor opportunity. Just go for a walk around the block and you’re likely to run into a local park in your neighborhood. And don’t forget your canine buddy. Most parks require keeping your dog on a leash, but a nonprofit organization, DOGPAW, maintains four off-leash parks in the county. A chance for you to go for a walk with your best friend!
However you decide to observe Great Outdoors Month, let’s get out there and explore the abundance of nature offered in our area!
Want to learn how? Contact us.
Bernie Stea & Debb Janes
Columbian “& Outdoors” Feature Writers