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Watershed Park

Olympic Peninsula > Olympia
47.0285, -122.8891 Map & Directions
Length
1.36 miles, roundtrip
Elevation Gain
150 feet
Highest Point
300 feet
Calculated Difficulty About Calculated Difficulty
Easy
The structure-heavy Watershed Park gives visitors an up-close glimpse of the inner workings of a wetland. Photo by Anna Roth. Full-size image
  • Dogs allowed on leash
  • Old growth
  • Good for kids
  • Wildlife
  • Rivers

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None

Discover the area that was the original source of Olympia's drinking water--a delightful little green wetland known as Watershed Park. With thirty structures on the 1.35 mile loop, you can be sure to have an intimate look at the workings of a wetland without getting damp yourself. Continue reading

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Hiking Watershed Park

Discover the area that was the original source of Olympia's drinking water--a delightful little green wetland known as Watershed Park. With thirty structures on the 1.35 mile loop, you can be sure to have an intimate look at the workings of a wetland without getting damp yourself.

Originally the site of nearly all of Olympia's drinking water, this small park now provides a site of retreat for residents. The city operated the waterworks here, and relics are still visible if visitors look carefully. The area was saved in 1955 by the citizens who opposed a logging operation slated for Watershed Park.

The park also boasts the source of Moxlie Creek. This spring, officially named Moxlie Creek Springs Basin, is one of the largest in the region. This accounts for the remarkable wetness in the area -- springs creep and flow around fragrant skunk cabbage and venerable mossy-limbed branches, making its way around and about to create Moxlie Creek.

Beginning from the G. Eldon Marshall Parking area, descend steeply to the quiet creek, finding a sign lauding the people who were instrumental in saving this haven of nature in the city. Hiking clockwise, the trail begins as a relatively flat one, meandering around and over roots and boggy areas.

Where it is not made of wooden structures, the trail is graveled or dirt, but with one or two steep, narrow sections, this is not a place for strollers or wheelchairs. However, those able to navigate a trail by themselves or with a little assistance will love how close to nature this trail brings them.

The way is well-signed, with trails branching off to various pedestrian entrances.

WTA worked here in 2019!

Hike Description Written by
Anna Roth, WTA Staff

Watershed Park

Map & Directions

Trailhead
Co-ordinates: 47.0285, -122.8891 Open in Google Maps

Before You Go

See weather forecast

Parking Pass/Entry Fee

None

WTA Pro Tip: Save a copy of our directions before you leave! App-based driving directions aren't always accurate and data connections may be unreliable as you drive to the trailhead.

Getting There

Parking is on Henderson Boulevard near Interstate 5. The park's trail system can also be accessed from pedestrian entrances on Eastside Street and 22nd Avenue.

More Hike Details

Trailhead

Olympic Peninsula > Olympia

City of Olympia

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Watershed Park

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