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Deception Pass State Park

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General Information

Description - Deception Pass State Park encompasses over 4,000 acres (including Hoypus Hill and Dugualla acreage) with 77,000 feet of saltwater shoreline and 28,000 feet of freshwater shoreline on Cranberry Pass, Campbell Lakes and Heart Lake. Areas of special interest are the Heart Lake Natural Forest, Hoypus Point Natural Forest and the CCC Interpretive Center at Bowman Bay.

Marine facilities include two docks, 12 moorage floats, 11 mooring buoys, three freshwater and five saltwater boat launch ramps, 12 grounding floats, one swim float, five fishing floats and one fishing dock. In addition, there are three multiple sites on Skagit Island, five primitive campsites on Hope Island, and one boat pump out station at Cornet Bay.

The swimming area covers 300 feet of unguarded beach with a large concession/bathhouse/comfort station building.

Camp facilities include 246 standard sites, five primitive bike/walk-in campsites, nine comfort stations (six main camp, one Bowman Bay and two ELC), a 65-person overnight group camp facility at North Beach with two Adirondack shelters, one kitchen and a vault toilet.

There are eight day use areas (West Beach, North Beach, Cranberry Lake, Cornet Bay, Rosario, Bowman Bay, Heart Lake and Pass Lake) that contain 306 picnic sites, six kitchens, five picnic shelters, 11 comfort stations, six vault toilets and parking for 1,194 vehicles.

Other amenities include an Environmental Learning Center, a concession/bathhouse, a CCC Interpretive Center at Bowman Bay (staffed by volunteers), an amphitheater, 35 miles of hiking trails, 1.5 miles of interpretive trail and an underwater park at Rosario Beach.

Recreation - Activities in the park include camping, group camping, picnicking, swimming, scuba diving, boating, fishing, hiking, interpretation, and ELC camping.

Climate - Washington's climate varies with each region. Deception Pass State Park is located in an area "protected" by surrounding ocean waters and mountain ranges. Temperatures are consistently moderate, rarely topping 80 degrees in the summer and rarely falling below 30 degrees in the winter.

Annual rainfall averages 26 inches, approximately half that of Seattle. In the summer months, and especially during July and August, the park may go for weeks without a cloud in the sky. Snowfalls occur mainly in January and February and usually total only one or two inches. Northeast winds may cause temperature extremes.

Island tides range over 14 feet. The extreme low tide of 4.0 feet to the extreme high tide of over 10 feet.

Location - Deception Pass State Park is located nine miles north of Oak Harbor (or nine miles south of Anacortes) on Fidalgo and Whidbey Islands on State Highway 20, in Island and Skagit Counties.

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
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Filed By: Maria (Seattle, WA)
Number of People Encountered: 50+ ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Definitely make reservations, I think this is the most popular State park in Washington. We lucked out with gorgeous weather in early April and there were campsites available. It's hard to find private campsites, but possible. We had one across the road from Cranberry Lake, just a short walk to Puget Sound and the beach. Very nice and private. Definitely check the Washington State Parks homepage and look at the reservation map. If it says the site has good privay, it does. Most don't, but the setting is still pleasant with lots of trees and many water views. The hiking is great. Take the North Beach Trail and stroll along the beach. Saw several dogs enjoying the beach. You can hike up from the beach to the Deception Pass bridge. Cross the bridge if you aren't afraid of heights. It's very narrow. The bridge staddles Canoe Island. Take the steps down and follow the steep little trails all over the island, especially down to the south end. The views are worth it, and most people stay near the bridge. Also go to the beach on the other side of the park on Puget Sound and follow the sand dunes trails and the boardwalk. The swimming on the north end of Cranberry Lake is good, roped off, especially good for young kids. This park is well worth the trip, the scenery is stunning, but I would recommend going in Spring or Fall to beat the crowds. A good time to go is April, becuase you can also take in the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival along the route to Deception Pass.

More Information

Contact Information:
Deception Pass State Park, 41229 State Route 20 , Oak Harbor, WA, 98277-7924, Phone: 360-675-2417, Fax: 360-675-8991

Additional Information:
The Islands - The Island region includes Whidbey Island, Camano Island, Fidalgo Island and the San Juan Islands. Many islands and islets make up the San Juan Islands, but it's the four main islands, Lopez, Shaw, Orcas and San Juan, that are accessible to visitors.
Washington State Parks - Washington has 149 state parks located around the state.

Washington State Parks - Official Agency Website


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