3 Scenic Hiking Trails Surround The Small Town Of Shelton, Washington
A common myth surrounding Washington State is the belief that it rains almost all the time here. In reality, whether or not the weather ruins your outdoor plans depends on where you are visiting. If your travels take you west of Seattle to the town of Shelton, you can expect a bit more water falling from the sky than you might be used to. But all of that extra water means you can expect the woods surrounding the town to be a bit more beautiful than you’re used to as well. So when you want to get out and enjoy it all, but don’t want to stray too far from where you’re staying, here are three fantastic trails you can get to in 10 minutes or less.
The Lake Isabella State Park Loop is an easy trail for all.
Exactly 10 minutes from downtown Shelton is Lake Isabella State Park. It is a nice, mostly flat area to the south, where you will find a bunch of paths that wander across fields and through shady groves of trees. If you walk all of them it will take you about three hours to get back to your vehicle, but you’ll probably lose track of time with all that scenery to look at.
The lovely blue of Lake Isabella beckons.
If you stick to the outside looping trail you’ll get to see it all: wide meadows, sturdy trees, and the crystal blue of the lake. You might also get to see some birds or other local wildlife. And you’re encouraged to bring your four-legged friends along, as long as they can stay on a leash. (We don’t want to be chasing after them when they spot a squirrel, now do we?)
The Huff and Puff Park Loop sounds tougher than it is.
With a name like Huff and Puff, you would think hiking this 2.5-mile loop would be physically exhausting. In fact, it is often lauded as a rather easy hike, and the liberal sprinkling of wood chips on the trail makes for an extra-cushy stroll through the green trees. The paths are wide and well-maintained, so whether you’re walking or running you won’t have trouble keeping your momentum around other people on the trail.
Come for the trails, stay for the tails.
You can also bring your puppers on this stroll through nature if they stay on a leash. There’s a frisbee golf course near the parking area, and while dogs and frisbees do normally get along, we don’t want them interrupting someone’s game with their spectacular fetching skills.
Goldsborough Creek Trail is the toughest of the three trails.
With a distance of 1.4 miles, the trail running alongside Goldsborough Creek is technically the shortest of the trails on this list, but its steep climb makes it a bit more challenging. As they say, though, the higher the hike, the more scenic the sights. And that is definitely true in this case.
Part of this trail is private property, but that doesn’t mean you can’t hike there.
Part of this area is what is known as a "working forest", meaning it is cultivated by a private landowner for business purposes. They reached an agreement with local officials to keep the trail open to the public, so you can still walk alongside the gentle waters of Goldsborough Creek. Just stay on the marked paths and obey all signs so the trail can be kept open to others visiting after you.
Keep your eyes peeled for migrating fish.
Goldsborough Creek is part of the migratory path for many of Washington’s finest fish, including cutthroat trout and Pacific lamprey. So if you go during their migrating season you could spot them leaping through the air as they make their way to Oakland Bay. And once again, the trail is dog-on-leash friendly, so your furry family members can enjoy the scenery right beside you.
Have you hiked any of these trails before? We’d love to know how your trip went and which one is your favorite, so please tell us in the comments!
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Lake Isabella State Park, 700-768 W Delight Park Rd, Shelton, WA 98584, USA
3600 N Shelton Springs Rd, Shelton, WA 98584, USA
26 W Hulbert Rd, Shelton, WA 98584, USA