One Photo: The Beach At Pacific Beach State Park

The Beach At Pacific Beach State Park

Pacific Beach State Park sits north if Ocean Shores and is located, obviously, right on the Pacific Ocean. It’s a small state park but the whole area has a lot to offer.

This photo was taken on our first day there, shortly after we arrived. The beach is beautiful and I couldn’t pass up the perspective of these old piers lined up and heading off in the distance.

Our Favorite Things About Pacific Beach, Washington

Our Favorite Things - Pacific Beach

We recently had the pleasure of stopping off at Pacific Beach on a road trip that included the Washington Coast. Here is a look back at Our Favorite Things:

Pacific Beach State Park

We stayed in one of the two yurts available at Pacific Beach State Park. This made for some easy camping because we didn’t have to pack along a tent or anything. The yurt was sturdy, comfortable, and came with a heater, electric light, and slept 4-5. All of us also loved how close to the beach this park put us. It was literally just a two minute walk away.

Windjammer Restaurant & Lounge

Needing a place to eat out at, we took a three minute drive outside the state park and found the Windjammer Restaurant & Lounge. The food was tasty and the service was very friendly. This restaurant sits at the entrance to a local naval station that has been converted into a military resort. The gift shop there was also where we purchased our Pacific Beach souvenir t-shirts. Can’t leave without something like that!

Beach Driving

without a doubt, getting out and driving down the beach was one of the top things about visiting Pacific Beach. Many different spots along the Washington Coast feature this type of access. The nice part about Pacific Beach though is there we saw far fewer other vehicles. Often it felt we were out there all by ourselves.

Emily’s Confections

The morning after our second night in town was made great by the combination of a fresh ocean breeze and beautiful scenery. But it was made perfect with a trip into town, again just minutes away, to Emily’s Confections. We all got fresh made cinnamon rolls and they were delicious. Emily’s Confections also offers soups, sandwiches, and other bites to eat for later in the day. Next time we’re in town, the aim is to try Emily’s for lunch.

The Beach

How could one of the favorite things about a place called Pacific Beach not be the beach? The beaches through the Pacific Beach are long and wide, with plenty of room for everyone who visits them. Even though the area is relatively short, there are several different types of beach. The area closest to the state park is more active and has more people. North from there, you’ll find fewer people. This is a great place to go to have a secluded beach getaway.

Exploring Highway 109 – Ocean Shores to Taholah

Ocean Shores to Taholah Map

The Washington Coast is a very underrated oceanfront experience. While it lacks the constant sunshine and long stretches of pure white sand, it makes up for it in several ways.

You can truly get away from it all on the Washington Coast because there are no huge population centers there. With all of the sparsely settle area, you can go there and be sure to find a place you can call your own.

One of the top destinations on the Washington Coast is Ocean Shores. This popular vacation getaway is not only home to beaches and access to the water of the Pacific Ocean, but also hotels, restaurants, a golf course, boat rentals, an arcade, moped and bicycle rentals, go carts, bumper boats, and more. While there, one of the best things you can do is bust your way out of town and head north on Highway 109.

Washington’s Highway 109 starts in Hoquiam and heads west to the turn off to Ocean Shores, before it turns and follows the coastline north to where it ends in the tiny community of Taholah. There are a number of scenic locations that this road will take you right by and along the way you’ll find plenty of access to the beaches and also some small communities. Taking this highway north and exploring from Ocean Shores to Taholah can be a fun activity, no matter why you came to the beach.

Stage 1: Choices

You have two choices on how to get out to Highway 109 when leaving Ocean Shores. You can head out on the same road you came in on until you reach a tiny community known as Hogan’s Corner, take a left at the stop sign and you’re on your way. If you’re a bit more adventurous and love driving on the beach like me, head out on one of Ocean Shores’ main beach access roads, take a right, and drive up the hard packed sand. Driving on the beach has got to be one of the best parts about the Washington Coast and something that a seasoned road tripper just has to love. About four miles north, and come on, that’s a long time to be beach drivin’, you’ll come to Ocean City where you can take a right and return to the pavement. No matter which route you take, you’ll pass by the Quinault Beach Resort and Casino. This is another fun stop off when in the area but right now its just too much of a distraction from this little road trip.

Stage 2: Quiet Beaches

Leaving Ocean City, you’ll be driving through thick forests and past the occasional campground or RV park. Next up is Copalis Beach, another of the sleepy little beach communities in this area. Griffiths-Priday Ocean State Park is located just north of there and though the parking lot is small, there is a whole lot of protected beach there with trails leading off through the tall grass. North of there, on the other side of the Copalis River, is Copalis State Airport. If what you’re picturing is SeaTac or even a small municipal airport, you’ve got to get those pictures out of your head. Copalis State Airport is merely a stretch of wide open sand that the State of Washington has designated as a public airstrip. It’s not uncommon to pull up there and see small planes landing right on the beach. That right there is reason enough to stop and check it out. Continue on north from there on old 109 and eventually you’ll come to a sign noting “Beach Access” and it’s worth taking. This is a great little beach area, known as Roosevelt Beach, that features a creek flowing right across the sand on your right when you drive in. As you drive south on the sand, the scenery is gorgeous as you have the Pacific Ocean out the passenger window and some colorful cliff walls out the driver’s side. Eventually reach Boone Creek, also flowing across the sand, and that’s the sign to turn around and head back to the highway.

Stage 3: Beautiful Place to Live

Venturing on north from Roosevelt Beach, your next stop will be Seabrook. If you’d first traveled to this part of the Washington Coast in the early 2000’s or earlier, Seabrook didn’t even exist. Today this adorable little community that sprung up out of nowhere is filled with modern built homes that visually nod back to a simpler time. Drive the streets here and you’ll swear you’re in another part of the country and possibly even in the middle of the last century. Just north from Seabrook is the much older town of Pacific Beach. Here you’ll find a couple of lodging options, some stores, a great bakery, a couple of restaurant options, and Pacific Beach State Park. If you’re itching to get out and drive on the beach again, here’s your chance. On the north end of Pacific Beach, the beach access road gets you down on the sand and you can drive it all the way to the next little town on Highway 109, Moclips. Moclips is home to more lodging options, most of them in the form of vacation rentals. The beach between those two communities is wide open and welcoming with plenty of room for everyone. It isn’t uncommon to go there and find only one or two other cars parked out on the sand. Moclips is also home to the Museum of the North Beach which can be a real fun visit. This part of the coast will either make you not want to leave or at least start planning your return trip.

Stage 4: The Quinault Reservation

Continuing north from Moclips, you’ll be entering the Quinault Reservation. This reservation was founded in 1855 for a native tribe that once freely roamed the entire Olympic Peninsula. It’s a beautiful area that features tall forests and a rocky coastline. A notable place to stop with some incredible scenery is Point Grenville, a former Coast Guard station that was commissioned in 1949 and decommissioned in 1980. Point Grenville is accessible but requires a permit. You can get the permit just north from there in the small town of Taholah. Taholah is a tiny town at the very end of Highway 109 that includes a small seafood processing plant owned by the tribe, and the gorgeous mouth of the Quinault River. Comparing the look of this small reservation town to the communities you’ve driven through on the way there can be quite the eyeopener too. Accessing the clear blue water of the Quinault River can be done right where the water meets the Pacific Ocean. You’ll be amazed at the stunning beach there that features age old driftwood trees scattered across it. This is a very special place on the Washington Coast.

Stage 5: The Return Trip

That trip on Highway 109 from Ocean Shores to Taholah is only about 25 miles long. Depending on what you plan on doing on the way back you could find yourself back in Ocean Shores in as little as a half hour or so. If you didn’t take the chance to drive the beach on the way up though, you should really do it on the way back as it is easily one of the best parts of being in the region. Plus, this gives you the opportunity to stop at any of the cool things you saw on the way north.

If you’re spending any amount of time in Ocean Shores, a drive up to the end of Highway 109 and back could be one of the more fun activities you do while you’re there. Plus, you just may stumble across an area you would rather stay at during your next visit to the beautiful Washington Coast.

A Visit To Pacific Beach State Park

We had the itch and wanted to head to the coast for some fresh ocean air.  Like a lot of people from Washington, I’d been to Ocean Shores a number of times.  I’d always had fun there but this time was looking for something different.

We ended up getting two brand new experiences.  First we chose Pacific Beach State Park, a place I’d never been, then we reserved two nights in one of the new yurts that Washington State Parks has installed at several of their properties.

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I’ll do a post about our yurt excursion later (known in our family as our “yurtscursion”), back to Pacific Beach State Park.

This is a small park for a state park, mainly consisting of RV-friendly spaces.  Some very cool spaces are there too that are literally right next to the beach.  Most of the spaces are close to each other and there is very little in the form of trees and bushes.  It has a very relaxed feel to it though and seems to attract a friendly sort of traveler.

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The real draw to Pacific Beach State Park though is the beach.  It doesn’t matter what spot you have you’re never more than two minutes from the sand.  And being at the beach is all about being out on the beach, right?  The beach there is great for wading, beachcombing, kite flying, sandcastle building, and more.

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The surrounding area has a lot to offer too, with a drive in beach just a mile or so north.  You can drive out on the sand from there all the way to Moclips, a couple miles north.  Moclips is also home to the Museum of the North Beach which can be a fun and educational visit.  Back in Pacific Beach you’ll find a couple of motel/vacation rental/cottage option if the state park isn’t for you.  There’s also the Windjammer Restaurant out on a nearby naval facility, a couple of small grocery/convenient stores, a kite shop, and a bakery.

With the experience we had, I can’t possibly recommend Pacific Beach State Park more highly.