8 Ways to Have an Outdoor Adventure on Fidalgo Island

Fidalgo Island has great spots for an outdoor adventure – any time of the year! Go exploring in the forests, along the trails, or out along the water.

Hike or bike the Tommy Thompson trail – it’s an accessible paved trail with minimal elevation gains. There are incredible views, art, and interpretive signage along this 3.3-mile route. The trail goes through town and along a former railroad trestle, crossing Fidalgo Bay in view of Mt. Baker. If you want to travel along a specific portion of the trail, here’s a breakdown of mileage: from 11th St. to 22nd St. is 0.6 miles, from 22nd St. to 34th St. is 0.7 miles, from 34th St. to the RV Park is 1.0 miles,from the RV Park to trestle is 0.6 miles and then across the trestle is 0.4 miles.

Hiking Path at Heart LakeBuy a trail map of the Anacortes Community Forest Lands ($10) and hike the trails at Cranberry Lake, Heart Lake, Whistle Lake, Mount Erie and Sugarloaf Mountain.  Mountain bikers will find miles of trails (check trail markers for allowed routes) in the 2,800-acre Anacortes Community Forestlands.  Whistle Lake Area is beautiful in every season. There are Pacific Madrone trees, native flowers and berries, and lots of bird watching opportunities. Heart Lake trails welcome hikers, equestrians and mountain bikers alike. Be sure to share the trail and keep your eyes open (there are some specifically for hikers only).

Hike the 3/4 mile trail in Sharpe Park (off Rosario Rd) up to a magnificent water and islands view.  Sharpe Park and Montgomery-Duban Headlands is a county-owned park abutting private property and the Fidalgo Island side of Deception Pass State Park. The classic Northwest shoreline forest is laced with trails, both of the family-friendly variety and some more suited to serious hikers. An easy hike offers a window into a lush low wetland followed by expansive views of the San Juan Islands from a dramatic bluff.

Watching the sunset at Sares Head Viewpoint is probably Anacortes’s best kept secret. It offers 180 degree views which include Whidbey Island, the Olympic Peninsula, Olympic Mountains, the San Juan Islands, and Victoria, Canada in far the distance. Be sure to stay on the Sares Head trail. As you get close, the waters of Rosario Strait will peek through the trees and the trail will head up onto a large bald rock face. This is Sares Head. Near the top is a bench, but there are plenty of spots to sit or have a picnic while you wait for the sun to set.

Play a round of golf, or play tennis at one of our public courts (at school locations). Create a friendly baseball/softball game at Alton Daniels field (14th and H Avenue). Outdoor team sports get all ages active! Swinomish Golf Links is an 18 hole Par 72 course. It offers open tree lined fairways, approachable greens, and many elevation changes. Plus, some of the most incredible views in the Pacific Northwest. Golf instruction is available for any level, with custom fitting studio sessions, custom individual performance lessons, overnight stay & play packages, and more.

Explore the nine-hole disc golf course (a challenging short par-3 course with many obstacles) at Rotary Park, located at 701 T Ave near Cap Sante Marina. For a course map click here (if you click on the baskets it will show you a picture of the hole). The course features a kiosk at the beginning of the trail showing both a map and hole distances. It is a heavily wooded course with beach access and views of Mt Baker and the sound. Keep an eye out for blackberry bushes and other hikers!

Stroll the docks at Cap Sante Marina and hike the trail around the marina to Rotary Park. There’s several benches and a covered picnic area. Food always tastes better when you have sunshine and a good view of boat traffic!  Seafarers’ Memorial Park, on the south side of Cap Sante Marina, has a pebble beach and picnic areas. On the north end of the marina, are large grassy areas. There’s also Rotary Park, which connects to the 37-acre Cap Sante Park.

Washington Park - Sunset BeachDrive, bike or walk the scenic Loop Road at Washington Park, or hike the parks’ trails (map available).  This dramatic 200-acre peninsula, Anacortes’s most popular park, offers beaches, playgrounds, a boat launch, evidence of past glacial activity, a leisurely two-mile walking and driving loop, miles of woodland trails, overnight camping, and inspiring vistas at every curve. Overnight camping area consisting of 68 campsites for RVs and tents, with restrooms, showers and laundry facilities. Only about 41 of the 200 acres are developed. A 2.3 mile paved road runs through the entire park for use by cars, joggers, bicyclists and walkers. For information about any park amenities, please call 360-293-1918. Fidalgo Island’s most western spot – Juniper Point – is another great place to catch the sunset. The view includes Burrows Channel, Burrows Island, Rosario Strait and the San Juan Islands. Getting here does require a bit of hiking through 220-acres of woods. For a very short hike see if the parking spot near trail 515 is open. There is one bench at Juniper Point, and lots of space to find a spot to sit.

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