Deception Pass State Park

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About Deception Pass State Park

Wow, where to start? Deception Pass is so chock-full of things to do that this is truly a difficult decision. Located along the coast of Northwest Washington, this state park offers…(deep breath)...rugged sea cliffs, old-growth forests, sweeping sand dunes, expansive shorelines, unique wildlife, mountains, islands, and sunsets you wouldn’t believe, not to mention boating, fishing, hiking, swimming, diving, kayaking, clamming, crabbing, mountain biking and sailboarding, phew! And that’s not even close to all of it. When you pay a visit to Deception Pass State Park, you’ll have your pick from 167 tent sites or 143 RV sites, which is good because you’re going to need more than just one day to explore all its wonders. You can even make reservations online or by phone, how convenient is that? So start planning your visit today, you’re going to need all the time you can get!

Campgrounds in Deception Pass

Bowman Bay Campground
David
David: 1.5 hrs from Seattle. Bowman Bay was my childhood family's favorite campground, and for good reason....
Deception Pass Group Campground
Sandra
Sandra: Beware the proximity to the Naval Airstation: you may be startled by very loud engine noise...
Cranberry Lake Campground
Yanick
Yanick: Earplugs are a must! The nearby naval air station runs maneuvers frequently... those jets are LOUD. I...
Quarry Pond Campground
Stone-skippers will feel right at home at Quarry Pond Campground. Located near the most quaint...
Deception Pass Cabins
Fancy a romantic getaway with your own private cabin? Head to the Ben Ure Cabin at Deception Pass, and...

Photos

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Deception Pass
hipcamper
June 5th, 2015
Deception Pass
hipcamper
June 5th, 2015
Deception Pass
hipcamper
June 5th, 2015
Deception Pass
hipcamper
June 5th, 2015
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Deception Pass
Deception Pass
Deception Pass

8 Reviews

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Hipcamper David

1.5 hrs from Seattle. Bowman Bay was my childhood family's favorite campground, and for good reason. Set in old growth forest with water-view campsites, it's one of Washington's most pristine, tranquil parks. With only 20 campsites it always feels intimate even when full. Hot showers are in the clean bathrooms.

Relaxing trails take off on either side of the bay. One of which goes to Rosario Beach, where the picture at the top of this page was taken, not Bowman Bay. The cabins in the picture are nowhere near the campground. It's a .7 mile hike, perfect to watch the sunset and return before nightfall.
Cons: Sometimes jets from the Whidbey Island Airbase fly over at night. Locals call it the Sound of Freedom. Reservations a must.

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Hipcamper Sandra

Beware the proximity to the Naval Airstation: you may be startled by very loud engine noise periodically, which sometimes last a while (repeated take off & landing practice). Growler airplanes are LOUD!

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Hipcamper Jill

Deception pass is one of the most incredible spots in greater Seattle area. The camping was very private and quiet. I wouldn't recommend this site for people looking to swim and get sun. But I highly recommend this site for a gorgeous, PNW treasure in a private, wooded camping ground.

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Hipcamper Ash

RV camp at Deception pass lower loop. It's awesome - close to beaches, shaded. Clean, well maintained.

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Hipcamper Adrienne

There is lots of beach access for shore fishing and this area is very picturesque.

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Hipcamper chris

Check the naval base training schedule. The two days we camped we -- and this is no exaggeration -- we could not speak across a picnic table for the 4 hours (until 1am) that the jets were overhead.

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Hipcamper Yanick

Earplugs are a must! The nearby naval air station runs maneuvers frequently... those jets are LOUD. I was fortunate to not have many jets fly over in the middle of the night, but the evening was intense.

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History of Deception Pass State Park

The human history of the park dates back thousands of years, when the first people settled in the areas now known as Cornet Bay, Bowman Bay, and Rosario. Eventually, the land was settled by the Samish and the Swinomish. They lived on the land until the early 1900s.

During his Northwest coastal explorations, Captain George Vancouver became the first European to identify the area near Whidbey Island as a passage, which he named Deception Pass. A 1923 act of Congress designated the property for public recreation purposes. In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built roads, trails, buildings, and bridges to develop the park.

The name Deception Pass derived from Captain Vancouver's realization that what he had mistaken for a peninsula was actually an island. He named that island Whidbey in honor of his assistant, Joseph Whidbey, who was at his side when Vancouver realized the mistake. The captain named the inlet at which he was anchored Deception Pass to commemorate the error.