Lighthouse Traverse Trail

Ilwaco, Washington

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Cape Disappointment State Park is a popular vacation destination for families. One can easily spend a delightful week here camping, visiting two lighthouses and an interpretive center, making side trips to Oregon and Long Beach, fishing for salmon, playing in the sand, and hiking the three park trails. Leadbetter Point and Benson Beach are nearby. The best-known trail is the 7-mile Lighthouse Traverse, which takes in the lighthouses at North Head and Cape Disappointment, the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, and Cape Disappointment State Park. As all four destinations can be reached by car, only a determined family out for a challenge will hike the full distance at one time. Leave a car at either end or at one of the attractions along the way, or break up the hike into shorter segments for separate outings. The most interesting segment for children is the ½-mile Discovery Trail from the entrance station of Cape Disappointment State Park to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. The rewards are thrilling surveys over the Columbia bar, the North Jetty, and remnants of old Fort Canby, with magnificent groves of old-growth Sitka spruce along the way.
Best Hikes with Kids: Western Washington & the Cascades

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Best Hikes with Kids: Western Washington & the Cascades

by Joan Burton (The Mountaineers Books)

Cape Disappointment State Park is a popular vacation destination for families. One can easily spend a delightful week here camping, visiting two lighthouses and an interpretive center, making side trips to Oregon and Long Beach, fishing for salmon, playing in the sand, and hiking the three park trails. Leadbetter Point and Benson Beach are nearby. The best-known trail is the 7-mile Lighthouse Traverse, which takes in the lighthouses at North Head and Cape Disappointment, the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, and Cape Disappointment State Park. As all four destinations can be reached by car, only a determined family out for a challenge will hike the full distance at one time. Leave a car at either end or at one of the attractions along the way, or break up the hike into shorter segments for separate outings.

The most interesting segment for children is the ½-mile Discovery Trail from the entrance station of Cape Disappointment State Park to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center. The rewards are thrilling surveys over the Columbia bar, the North Jetty, and remnants of old Fort Canby, with magnificent groves of old-growth Sitka spruce along the way.

©  Joan Burton/The Mountaineers Books. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Ilwaco
Distance: 7
Elevation Gain: 200 feet
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Moderate
Duration: Day hike
Season: Year round
Trailhead Elevation: 10 feet
Top Elevation: 200 feet
Local Contacts: Fort Canby State Park
Local Maps: Cape Disappointment State Park brochure
Driving Directions: Directions to Lighthouse Traverse Trail

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Apr 2018