Hiking · Local Adventures

Local Adventures: Outer Loop Trail

The boys and I decided to finish the trail system at Rhododendron Park outside of Coupeville. It was a cloudy day, but not hot or cold. So a good spring hiking day for getting in a few local miles. We parked in the large lot behind the ball fields (accessed off of Patmore Road, turn off Hwy 20 near OLF and stay straight on the road. Keep an eye out though, the park marker isn’t big and can be missed.) After our last visit doing the Rhodie Road Trail, we decided to do the boundary trails, that go around the park.

From the parking lot head for the very obvious trailhead. This is Ballpark Trail. We hiked along the trail, ignoring a trail to the left (that trail takes you back to the ball fields, and can be used to make a loop).

At about 2 tenths of a mile, we took a right onto the Boundary Trail. This section of trail is about .6 tenths of a mile long. It wanders thru a more open section of forest, and right now the rhody bushes are coming into bloom, lighting up the woods.

You may hear Navy jets while hiking here, OLF does touch and go practice nearby, but also the jets fly out from the main field, miles away, over Coupeville and the prairie. As well, if you hear shooting don’t worry, one of the best gun ranges is just a bit away. But honestly, it is usually very quiet here, but be forewarned.

In bloom.

Getting ready to open.

Walker and Alistaire ahead of me. We went hiking as part of homeschooling. Worked for me. I let them wander ahead, and listened to them chatter.

We turned onto the Campground Trail, and followed as it wound thru the woods, passing thru the shuttered campground. This section was .25 of a mile long.

We came out to the parking lot off of Park Road and crossed the road by a wooden trail kiosk that was bare. This trail is Grandpa’s Legacy.

Pass a junction .2 tenths of a mile later (Mike’s Shortcut) and stay on the main trail. The junction shoots you to the Rhodie Road Trail.

This trail wound thru many types of forest. Some open and well lit, with rhody flowering, Evergreen Huckleberries, Red Huckleberries, Salal, Oregon Grape, and ferns. Other sections were dark and gloomy, over grown and full of dead and or dying trees. Still, hiking is better than not.

The boys wanted to finish the loop by turning left onto Timber Road Trail. We had gone about .45 tenths on Grandpa’s Legacy. This trail cuts across towards Rhodie Road Trail and is about .15 tenths of a mile long. It drops you out onto the road, take a short stroll to the left, up the road, to find a trail to the right, marked with cement bollards. This is the Ballpark Trail, that you started on. Pass the Boundary Trail and complete the loop, back out at the parking area. Our loop was around 2.1 miles long, with minimal elevation gain. However, the trail tread is challenging for some – a lot of exposed roots, and small trees down across the trail you must step over.

There are options for adding a bit more to the hike.

Parking and use of the park is free. Dogs are required to be leashed.


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