Kitsap Memorial Park
Kitsap Memorial Park is a tiny Washington State Park hidden between the main land and the Olympic Peninsula. It’s not a large state park, but it boasts access to Hood Canal and is a great stop on the long drive to the mountains. One huge bonus is they have a free parking spot for the bathrooms (15 minutes max), which is huge as there isn’t many bathroom pit stops on the long drive.
The park is split in two, with one side the group area, the other has a small campground, cabin rentals and the beach access. This area also has a great playground for working the whines out of kids. Trail wise there isn’t a lot (only about 1.5 miles total), but the trail down to the water is well worth the stop.
The trail down from the top is steep, but easily walked, with a sturdy hand rail for coming back up. There is a bench at the bottom for people to enjoy the views.
At the bottom a set of concrete stairs, with handrails, leads down to the water. The Hood Canal doesn’t have a beach, but rather a rocky shore littered with shells from sea birds having enjoyed dinner. Not something one walks, but rather enjoys. The view of the Hood Canal bridge down the water is pleasant as well.
It’s mostly just a nice place to sit and enjoy the views. On sunny days the Olympic Mountains are visible across the water, and that leads one to get back in the truck and get moving. However, in winter, it’s easy to simply linger a bit more.