For the first time, there's a comprehensive guide to more than 120 Washington state parks.
The book, just published by the state parks department, has hundreds of photos and descriptions of the parks, including park features, amenities and activities. It highlights not only the expected activities like hiking, biking and boating but also some not-so-well-known activities such as paragliding, geocaching and metal detecting.
A special section is devoted to state parks in the San Juan Island Archipelago, a grouping of islands unique to Washington. The San Juan Island section is split into two parts: parks that are accessible by ferry and parks that can be reached only by private or commercial boat.
There is a list of campgrounds, but also, for those who want something a little more, ahem, comfortable, there's a section on “roofed accommodations” for rent at Washington state parks, including cabins, yurts, vacation houses, a fire lookout, and even a castle. Does that pique your curiosity?
The 364-page guide sells for $6 when purchased in person at State Parks headquarters in Tumwater or at one of several dozen state parks (see list here).
It can be purchased online through the parks department, www.parks.state.wa.us, for $13.80 including shipping and handling.