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Old 12-11-2016, 10:03 AM   #1
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Need a scenic site close to Seattle

With The Trailer getting outfitted and all that, it's time to start thinking about where our first trip will be later this month. I'd like to find a fairly scenic place close enough to Seattle that I won't freak out over driving it too far for our first trip.

Heck if I know how far will be comfortable, but lots farther than the super boring KOA that's 10 mins from our house. They have a great view - of the Amazon warehouse across the street. Um yeah, not staying there.

Chances are by then I won't be that good at backing it up , so if the place had pull-through spots that would be great. Full hookups. And yes, I know it'll probably be raining, but that's okay. I have a really good, super long raincoat.

Also, for those that have left from the Seattle area (we're near Southcenter, if that helps), about how long does it take you to reach the WA coast for camping?

Good campground suggestions for along the WA coast would be great as well.

Thanks much folks!
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Old 12-11-2016, 10:08 AM   #2
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I know NOTHING about this park, but on FiberglassRV they're planning a gathering next September at Dash Point State Park, which I understand is 25 miles south of Seattle... somewhere. Maybe you'd like to check out that park for your quick get-away.

"Some sites have full services, Water, electric, & sewer. Dump station at park. Flush toilets, showers. Beach access."
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Old 12-11-2016, 10:14 AM   #3
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Here are four sites that might help.

RV Park Reviews - Trusted Reviews of Campgrounds & RV Parks
https://www.campendium.com/
ALL US AND CANADA CAMPGROUNDS LOCATOR: STATE PARKS NATIONAL PARKS FORESTS MORE california oregon washington new york pennsylvania more
Campsite Photos, Camping Pictures, and Campground Reviews - campsitephotos.com

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Old 12-11-2016, 10:31 AM   #4
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I know NOTHING about this park, but on FiberglassRV they're planning a gathering next September at Dash Point State Park, which I understand is 25 miles south of Seattle... somewhere. Maybe you'd like to check out that park for your quick get-away.
Thanks - less than 25 mins from my house! Yeah, that would be a close drive. Barely have time to warm up the engine.
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Old 12-11-2016, 05:05 PM   #5
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We stayed there on a rainy windy weekend a couple years ago--we had a back in site but I remember some pull throughs...

Nothing fancy but nice walk down the trails to the beach area..

Are they open year round??
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Old 12-11-2016, 10:45 PM   #6
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I'd like to offer a fellow newbies opinion. Not about where to go, more about what to do.

Offseason camping at a probably less than full site close to home, where you can arrive with plenty of time to set up sounds like a perfect time to practice backing in rather than pulling through.

We are purposely planning many short distance trips (one with multiple stops) this summer just to practice setting up and packing up. Everywhere we camped last year we made note of easy sites to back into. We even took a couple trips just to scout sites. (We're a little excited about the new camper.)

Good luck on your shake down cruise!

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Old 12-12-2016, 09:28 AM   #7
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Following up on Jim's helpful opinions (post 6) this is what we found helpful on our first time towing trip. We went to full service private camp grounds rather than public parks. I talked to the campground when booking sites and asked for a site that would be easy to back into. The campground people were very helpful and pointed us to the easiest back-in site they had. We didn't wimp out with a drive thru site because we wanted to learn how to back-in. We embraced being newbies. We also took towing lessons from a driving school before venturing out.

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Old 12-12-2016, 10:23 AM   #8
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On the coast and a (relatively) short drive from Seattle (probably 3 hours from Southcenter if you're towing), we like Grayland Beach State Park. Stay in the new section -- the loops closest to the beach. Most sites are back-in but they're EASY back-in sites because of the campground layout. There are also a few pull-throughs but they're not very private.

This time of year some campsites there are closed altogether because they get partially flooded. But the rest are fine and it's a very nice park -- one of our first stays when Toto was new.

Another nice park (in the off-season) not too far from you is Belfair State Park. Probably a 90-minute drive from Southcenter assuming you loop through Tacoma. It's prettier than Dash Point -- but admittedly a longer drive. And that Narrows Bridge toll is a bit higher when you have more axles.
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Old 12-12-2016, 10:31 AM   #9
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I would suggest finding an empty parking lot on the way (probably not a mall one at this time of the year) and practise reversing 90° repetitively to get the practice in. Heck, first try just reversing in a straight line too. Remember, backing in to the left (drivers side) is WAY easier as you have a better sightline in that mirror. Do it for a while, then come back later to practise again. Reversing into a campsite just the one time, really is not that much practice, but I agree with others who said it is worth doing for the experience.

Learning to reverse well is quite valuable, to your sanity at campsites, as well as speeding the process along. As a side note, it can also earn you more money, as my son makes about $4k/year ($2/hr) because I taught him how to do so, and the company he works for greatly values this skill, and he pulls equipment trailers all the time, working for a seismic company.
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Old 12-12-2016, 11:17 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drpaddle View Post
On the coast and a (relatively) short drive from Seattle (probably 3 hours from Southcenter if you're towing), we like Grayland Beach State Park. Stay in the new section -- the loops closest to the beach. Most sites are back-in but they're EASY back-in sites because of the campground layout. There are also a few pull-throughs but they're not very private.

This time of year some campsites there are closed altogether because they get partially flooded. But the rest are fine and it's a very nice park -- one of our first stays when Toto was new.

Another nice park (in the off-season) not too far from you is Belfair State Park. Probably a 90-minute drive from Southcenter assuming you loop through Tacoma. It's prettier than Dash Point -- but admittedly a longer drive. And that Narrows Bridge toll is a bit higher when you have more axles.
Laura another vote for Grayland Beach State Park . Have stayed there twice now . Last time last Sept . The back in sites are really nice as been said . Pat
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Old 12-12-2016, 11:50 AM   #11
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Laura another vote for Grayland Beach State Park . Have stayed there twice now . Last time last Sept . The back in sites are really nice as been said . Pat
Thanks folks, this is the kind of information I was looking for.

I do plan to do some back up practicing before we take it out camping as the neighbor across the way has offered to take me - gotta figure out where a big, fairly empty lot is around here first (that doesn't have Xmas shoppers in it!). But, I know I won't be confident enough to do a site with tricky backing up. I doubt we'll have the Camper Trolley on by then, but we might - who knows!

I was kind of thinking Deception Pass, but I know the weather can be colder (and icier) near Bellingham. So the two suggestions from Toto are very helpful.
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Old 12-12-2016, 11:52 AM   #12
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.... And that Narrows Bridge toll is a bit higher when you have more axles.
For those with a Good to Go pass, did you know you need to register your trailer's plate as well as your vehicle? I found this out recently. Once we get the plate (tomorrow, hopefully!) it'll get added to my account.
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Old 12-12-2016, 12:14 PM   #13
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Thanks folks, this is the kind of information I was looking for.

I do plan to do some back up practicing before we take it out camping as the neighbor across the way has offered to take me - gotta figure out where a big, fairly empty lot is around here first (that doesn't have Xmas shoppers in it!). But, I know I won't be confident enough to do a site with tricky backing up. I doubt we'll have the Camper Trolley on by then, but we might - who knows!

I was kind of thinking Deception Pass, but I know the weather can be colder (and icier) near Bellingham. So the two suggestions from Toto are very helpful.
Laura , later I will posts a couple of photo's of Grayland .Pat
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Old 12-12-2016, 12:36 PM   #14
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I do not want to hijack someone's thread but feel the information needed is somewhat similar. We are from southern Idaho and have a daughter and son-in-law (with 2 grandkids ages 5 &3) living in Seattle. The past 2 summers we've shared a camping experience with them. In 2015 we stayed at Cape Disappointment (they were in a yurt) and last summer at the base of Mt. Rainier at a private campground Mounthaven (they were in a small cabin). My son-in-law has a cpap machine and requires electricity so we're always on the lookout for a scenic campground for our Escape that includes cabins for our additional crew of 4. Anything come to mind with these parameters?
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Old 12-12-2016, 01:13 PM   #15
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You can search the state parks for yurts and cabins- Grayland Beach is nice, with yurts. Rasar is a nice campground but the cabins are not near the campsite. (Lots of pull throughs in both for the OP.) Bayview (up near Deception Pass) has cabins. I'm not sure how close you can get to Seattle and find yurts or cabins but many of the state parks have them.
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Old 12-12-2016, 03:33 PM   #16
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need a scenic site close to Seattle

Quote:
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Laura , later I will posts a couple of photo's of Grayland .Pat
here Laura a few pics of Grayland State Park Pat
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Old 12-12-2016, 05:25 PM   #17
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i love Grayland it was the first camping place i took my trailer either that or cape disappointment another favorite
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Old 12-12-2016, 05:35 PM   #18
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We love Cape Disappointment State Park at Ilwaco, have spent many a storm-watching fall or winter stay there over the past 4 decades! Since before they had hookups, which all of A loop and part of B loop now have. Since the trees in the campground were so small you could see from one campsite to the next, and from campsite to ocean beaches -- but trees have grown and there is good site privacy now.
Awsome beach walks, for miles and miles. Nice short but somewhat strenuous hike up to the lighthouse.
No pull-through's (that I remember), but the site configuration -- around the spokes of multiple central rings -- makes for pretty easy backing into sites.
About 4 hrs from greater Seattle (although we usually get there down the west coast of the Olympic Peninsula).
Being on the southern end of the Long Beach Peninsula, a favourite Washington resort area (?), if the State Park isn't to your liking, you have a vast array of RV parks from which to storm-watch.
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Old 12-12-2016, 05:41 PM   #19
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i love Grayland it was the first camping place i took my trailer either that or cape disappointment another favorite
Very nice campground . Also a short walk to beach. We found it going home a couple years ago .Pat
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Old 12-12-2016, 05:42 PM   #20
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PS For those who don't know about this resource yet . . .

https://www.campsitephotos.com/

Allows you to get at least some sense of the view of/from each campsite -- provided the campsite is in their listing.

You can see how close any of the sites are to the beach or the beach trail.
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