Ilwaco is situated in Pacific County on the southern part of Long Beach Island. It’s located right where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean. Like many Pacific Northwest communities, Ilwaco’s past includes logging, timber, and the railroad. The Ilwaco Railway and Navigation Company served the area for over 30 years. Today, Ilwaco and the surrounding area have plenty for dogs to discover. Although it does not have its own veterinary clinic, canine care is just minutes away in nearby Oceanview.
The Black Lake Park is a beautiful spot to spend some quality
time with your four legged companion. This 47-acre natural space sits on the southwest
corner of Black Lake. Clip on your pup’s
leash and follow the trail around the lake. It clocks in at 1.5 miles, but you
can add the side trip of Josh’s Trail for an additional .3 miles. Your pooch
will love cruising through the trees and gazing at the lake as he gets some
exercise. The main area of the park has benches, restrooms, a doggie station,
and picnic facilities. Bring your lunch, water, and some biscuits for your pup
and make a day out of it.
No bones about it, your pup will love hanging out in Ilwaco!
The Port of Ilwaco is not only a marina, it’s also a working fishing village. This area is a pawsome place to wander around with your furry BFF. She’ll get some much needed exercise while also checking out the fishing boats in the harbor. The 2.5-acre Waterfront Park has a pedestrian walkway about a quarter mile long. If you want to pawse for a rest, take a seat on one of the many benches and enjoy the seaside atmosphere. During the summer, this area is home to the Saturday Market and other events. Check the local calendar so your pup can get out and socialize with the community.
Pack some water, snacks, and a leash and venture out onto the Lewis and Clark Discovery Trail. Your pup will feel like a genuine four legged explorer as he walks the path named after the famed discovery duo of the early 19th century. The trail heads north along the beautiful Washington Coast for about 8 miles until it reaches Long Beach. Your pooch will love walking through sand dunes, grasslands, and forest. As you venture north look for some of the trail’s notable landmarks such as the gray whale skeleton, a sculpture of William Clark, and an old ragged tree marking the end of his northward journey. Hike the entire trail or go just as long as your pup’s legs can handle.
Cape Disappointment State Park is anything but disappointing. This gorgeous park showcases the rugged beauty the Pacific Northwest is famous for. Leash up your pup and head over for some outdoor adventure. A variety of trails weave in and out of the park leading through enchanting old growth forests, around freshwater lakes, saltwater marshes and tidelands. Your dog’s nose will be on overdrive as he takes in all the smells. Stop by the beach and let him climb over the driftwood or check out one of the park’s lighthouses. Make no mistake; this place will keep you and your pooch busy for hours.
If your pooch is craving some fun in the sun, then drive 10 minutes north to Long Beach. This nearby community has access to miles and miles of sandy beach. Since the hard packed area of the beach is considered a Washington highway, you can drive right onto the beach and set up for the day. Your pal can romp around, dig in the sand, or chase the waves. Every year this beach hosts the Washington State International Kite Festival. If you happen to visit during the last week of August, your furry BFF will be treated to an extravagant kite flying show. This beach will definitely make your pup’s tail wag!
The Fort Columbia Historical State Park is situated right on the banks of the mighty Columbia River. It’s located in Chinook, less than 15 minutes from Ilwaco. If your dog is a history buff, then he’ll feel right at home in this park. Follow the self-guided interpretive trail and learn all about this late 19th century coastal defense site. You’ll see officers’ homes, artillery batteries, World War II disappearing guns, and much more. After your dog’s history lesson, take a hike through the forested trails or explore one of the park’s secluded beaches. Don’t forget to bring water and clean up bags.