Ellis Cove Trail is on the west side of Squaxin Park (formerly Priest Point Park). Ellis Cove is a moderately difficult hike, as there are a few steeper dips that have uneven stair switchbacks. This trail will take you out to the water, so you’ll have fantastic views of the cove and of the city, including the Capitol.
We recommend keeping younger kids close to you. There are some sloped drop-offs. Admittedly, our then 3 year old slid 6 feet off the trail. We retrieved him with only a few scrapes and a “that was kinda fun Mom!” I was embarrassed, but a family passing by commiserated that they same thing happened to them 5 minutes ago. If you want a wider trail where the kids can run and get out front, try Priest Point East Trail.
Lots of cool things for the kids to look at. Mushroom foraging is popular in this park. Other hikers will leave painted rocks and fun things along the path for kids to look at.
This trail takes our family a half day to hike. The time is split up evenly between looking at things on the beach and hiking. If you time it out, you could incorporate the farmer’s market or Children’s Hands-on Museum into your day, to get the most out of your trip to Olympia!
- Keep younger kids close by you. There are spots of posion oak and there are some steeper slope drop-offs.
- Know your kids’ limits. You can take the sidewalk along Easy Bay Drive for a flat walk back to the parking lot.
- Save some time for the playground at the end of the hike. Consider incorporating it into imaginative play during your hikes.
- Foodie Alert: Check out Left Bank Pastry on your way in or out. Delicious French Patisserie you won’t want to miss.