“An easy, pleasant loop through lush forest in Carkeek Park.”
— Sarah Baker
River/Creek · Wildlife
This nice, easy loop takes you on a tour of the best of Carkeek Park. The trails first lead north along the Puget Sound then down to Pipe's Creek. The run then climbs the bluffs on the south side of the park before descending back to the Sound and towards the beach. Make sure to take a little detour to the beach for views of the Olympic Mountains across Puget Sound!
The trail starts at the main parking lot in Carkeek Park. Head north of the picnic area on the North Bluff Trail
. After climbing a couple sets of steps, you'll soon come upon three different viewpoints which allow you to see out to Puget Sound through some tree branches.
Take a right onto the North Meadow Hillclimb
trail and then a quick left onto the Grand Fir Trail
. The trail rolls through a forest of firs and cedars and soon connects to the North Traverse
trail. The trail descends steeply to meet the road. Cross the road and Piper's Creek where you can sometimes see salmon spawning in fall.
Turn left onto Piper's Creek Trail
and follow this wide, well-traveled trail before taking a right onto the South Ridge Trail
. The trail ascends multiple sets of steps up onto the south bluff and then ascends and descends to cross multiple creeks. After the trail crosses the Clay Pit Trail
, the trail descends steeply to the north and ends in the main parking area.
If you have extra time, make sure to check out the beach!