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Review Highlights
Beautiful view!

I can only imagine the feeling when Lewis and Clark first saw the ocean and said, "Oh, the joy... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
whereintheworld2
,
Iowa
Great view, but a steep walk!

Trail could be called a huff and puff switchback trail up a steel incline to get there from the... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Vicki V
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Reviewed February 8, 2016

We have camped at this beautiful park many times. We enjoy the beach, trails and the bright star-lit sky on clear nights. There are two lighthouses and don't miss the Lewis and Clark Interpretation Center. This is one of our top choices for a relaxing getaway.

Date of experience: April 2015
Thank cyndy w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 8, 2016

This is a lovely area of southern Washington, but not when it's raining. Lewis & Clark arrived during a period of driving rain and it was miserable for them - that's why they called it Cape Disappointment

Date of experience: January 2016
Thank oregongirl12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2016

One must drive down to this south side of the peninsula from Long Beach, WA. It is a spectacular view.

Date of experience: January 2016
Thank MabuhayTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 22, 2015

I allowed way too little time on my vacation to visit this state park. Quite simply, there was much, much more here than meets the eye.

I would have really like to do more hiking here than I did, particularly along the rugged coast at the north end of the park. I got some great looks from the road of fog filled, heavily forested valleys, and I thought I would have plenty of time to get back - but I didn't.

What I did do was take in Fort Canby, the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center and Cape Disappointment Lighthouse. They are all worthwhile places, within a very short distance of each other.

First (because it came first), my great annoyance with this park. The parking area is very small (I'm not complaining about that, just noting it), and I felt I was lucky to get a parking place. I saw people circling the lot many times. I got lucky. Now, Washington State parks are not free. You have to display a purchased pass in your car. At the parking lot, there was an automated kiosk that sold passes. So far, so good. You could get a one day pass for $10 or a one year pass for $30. Since I don't expect to be back in Washington for over a year, I selected a one day pass. The machine said, "You have selected a one year pass. Continue?" I cancelled it and started over. Four times. My options were to buy a one year pass or leave my parking place, maybe never to regain it, and drive back to the park headquarters for my day pass. I bought the year pass and gave it to my daughter in Everett. However, I was irritated.

Up a steep hill from the parking lot, you come first to Fort Canby. This was part of the World War II defenses of the mouth of the Columbia River. It is in somewhat deteriorating condition, but it was fascinating to explore and there was more than adequate signage to explain what it was I was seeing and how the river defenses were supposed to work. The artillery is no longer in place, but you can wander through the casements and imagine the big guns in place. It was spooky in a way, and a great place for someone interested in history.

Up the hill from the fort, almost literally right on top of it, is the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center. I found out I have to pay an additional $5 to get in here, which did not sweeten my mood any. However, I quickly forgot all about it. This museum must be built in some sort of tesseract, because I don't know how they got all the exhibits crammed in there that they did. It is one of the best and most thorough exhibits on the Lewis & Clark expedition I have every seen. But wait, there's more. There are exhibits on the Columbia River entrance, on smuggling, on the dangers of the entrance and the life-saving service, on shipwrecks . . . Before I knew it, I had spent nearly five hours there, and I wasn't done! I finally left only because I wanted to get some walking in before I continued on south.

So I walked up to the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse. This trail was a roller coaster of steep ups and downs and my shins and calves really felt it. I must be getting old. On the way, there is a view of a beautiful little cove. Finally, at the lighthouse, there is a magnificent view of the Columbia River entrance and the wide Pacific. I could easily make out the headlands north of Tillamook away down in Oregon. I watched ships of all descriptions making their way in and out of the river. It was really great. I also got drawn into a political argument with some Californians, which soured my day, but that wasn't the parks fault.

Definitely go here, but buy your Washington parks pass at the park headquarters!

Date of experience: September 2015
2  Thank akbadger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 11, 2015

I live within walking distance of this park and go at least once a week and I am not the kind of person who sticks to the same thing over and over again. That should tell you how much there is to explore at this park. You can take long bike ride or walk on a paved trail. You can hike on a wide well-used trail or get your legs scratched up pushing your way through a little used trail. You can select views of the ocean from up high, on the beach or out on the jetty. Alternately you can select views of Ilwaco or the Columbia River. There are two lighthouses, both quite unique to see and get to. You can sleep in a yurt, a tent, or backpack/bike your way in. There is a wide open ocean beach and a more secluded cove with an ever changing arrangement of driftwood forts. I will never tire of this gem of a place.

Date of experience: December 2015
Thank yogagirl41
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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