Whether you’re touring the South Sound, or basecamping to explore Olympic National Park, Dosewallips State Park makes an ideal destination for touring the wider area, or just relaxing campside, where you’re likely to have more elk for company than fellow campers. Located on the east side of the Olympic Peninsula, approximately 60 miles north of Olympia, this 1,000-acre park rests at the base of glacier-clad peaks where the waves of Hood Canal lap up onto the rocky shore. Here, you can start your day with a hike through a Northwest rainforest, spend your afternoon clamming on the beach, then go for a tasty, fresh-caught meal in one of the local towns or villages. Just be sure to bring your appetite and sense of adventure.
The campground at Dosewallips straddles Highway 101, so you get to choose where you pitch your tent or park your RV: near the Dosewallips River delta on the east side, or in the wide, tree-ringed clearing on the west side. The park offers 75 tent sites and 48 RV and trailer sites with hookups; max length is 40 feet. All campsites are equipped with picnic tables and fire pits, and drinking water, restrooms, and showers are available. There’s also platform tents, cabins, and group sites available. The park has several picnic areas and a kitchen shelter, and ice and firewood are available for purchase. The campground is open year-round, but some services may not be available during the winter months. Seasonal campsite rates range from $12–$50/night.
For recreating in and around Dosewallips, the park offers 5 miles of hiking trails, exceptional bird and wildlife watching, and fishing, clamming and crabbing in the river and sound (recreational licence required). The park does not have its own boat launch, but you can launch from Triton Cove State Park, 7 miles south (launch permit required). For exploring the wider peninsula, the nearby towns of Paulsbo, Bainbridge and Port Townsend feature a variety of eclectic shops and galleries, as well as fantastic bistros and fine dining options. At the top of the peninsula, you can take whale watching cruises out of Port Angeles, or drive into Olympic National Park and head up to Hurricane Ridge for stunning views over the Olympic mountains, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and Canada’s Vancouver Island.