What to do outdoors on Whidbey

Dear Whidbey, we love eating and drinking with you, and we delight in your cultural riches, but usually we’re here for one thing and one thing only: all things outside.

Feet & Wheels

Whidbey offers a delightful respite from the ruggedness of Washington’s North Cascades and the peninsula’s Olympics. If you’re completing the Cascade Loop or a through-drive of Highway 20 (gateway to some of the most spectacular alpine terrain in North America), you’ll find Whidbey’s coastal hills, dells, and beach walks a dreamy change of scene and pace. Close to the treehouses, and accessible from a community trail that leaves right from our driveway, the dramatic bluffs of Possession Point State Park are a short walk away and offer spectacular views north to Mt. Baker and back across Possession Sound.

Ebey’s Landing Historical Preserve, just seven minutes from Coupeville and 30 minutes from the treehouses, offers the best of PNW coastal topography and stunning views. A moderate 6-mile hike starts from a parking lot that opens on a panorama of the island’s interior farmlands, with glimpses of Mt. Rainier, the North Cascades, and Mt. Baker. The views across the sound to Port Townsend and the ethereal Olympics beyond become more vivid as you hike past the old Ebey homesite and then traverse a spectacular bluff above the channel. After a gentle couple miles, the trail takes a few switchbacks down to the beach. Take time to look for shells and sea life – gray whales migrate through the strait in March, April, and May, and Orcas can be seen in the cold waters of the sound from April to September. A sandy stroll down the beach, followed by a short ascent at the edge of the pastureland, will return you to your original outbound trail. This family-friendly excursion offers immense rewards without immense effort and should find a spot of every Whidbey itinerary.


Wind & Water

Fisherfolks rejoice! Lagoon Point County Park just outside Greenbank and Fort Casey State Park close to Coupeville are favored beach fishing spots for Pink Salmon and hatchery Coho. Deer Lake, 12 minutes from the treehouses, and Lone Lake, 20 minutes away, are stocked with largemouth bass and trout for the freshwater fishermen.

Double Bluff Beach near Freeland is one of the best clamming spots on the island. First-timers can learn the ropes from the friendly long-timers at Sound Water Stewards through a Digging for Dinner clamming class. But if the wind is whipping, Double Bluff pulls double duty as the island’s best kiteboarding spot.

A gentler way onto the water awaits in Langley at Whidbey Island Kayaking, which offers kayak and SUP rentals and a range of guided tours.

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