Rebels By Bus

Slow Travel With Low Carbon Footprint

Summer in Thurston County

As I write this post, it is 91 degrees.  Summer has arrived in Olympia… it’s time to go to the park, by bus! 

Summer encourages Olympians to seek outdoor adventures.  With that in mind, here are some ideas for trails and parks in the greater Olympia area, and how to get there via Intercity Transit bus.  All Intercity Transit buses (including the Dial-a-Lift vans) have bikes racks, so take your bike to expand your adventures. 

For detailed route and destination information, please go to the Intercity Transit website at: www.intercitytransit.com

Have fun exploring our amazing community! 

PARKS:

Long Lake Park                  2790 Carpenter Road, Lacey                             Route 68

285 feet of lakefront; one of the best swimming beaches in the County.  The park includes picnic shelters, sand volleyball courts, and trails through shadowed woods. 

Yauger Park         3100 Capital Mall Drive, Olympia           Routes 44, 45, 47, 48, 49

40 acre Yauger Park features picnic areas, nature trails, playground equipment, ball fields, horseshoes, skateboard court, and disc (Frisbee) golf course.  Something for everyone! 

Woodland Creek Park        6729 Pacific Avenue SE, Lacey                         Route 67

72 acres of grassy open space, including picnic shelters, restrooms and walking paths.  Youth age 14 and under can fish in the pond for free.

Tumwater Falls Park              110 Deschutes Way, Tumwater           Routes 12 or 13

The park’s natural wonder is the Deschutes River falling 82 feet to Capitol Lake.  This 15 acre park is maintained by the Olympia Tumwater Foundation (www.olytumfoundation.org) and features ½ miles of trails and bridges over the river, picnic areas, lawns, restrooms, and playground equipment. 

Heritage Park Fountain              330 5th Avenue SW    near Olympia Transit Center

This wading and splashing fountain is popular for all ages.  It is located across 5th Avenue from Capitol Lake, within a few blocks of the Olympia Transit Center.  The Fountain does not operate on Wednesday, and has two shut-down periods during each day in order to properly maintain the fountain’s water quality.  There are benches and a grass picnic area. 

TRAILS:

Chehalis-Western Trail (for walking or biking)

This 22 mile trail is the former Chehalis-Western Rail bed, built by the Weyerhaeuser Company to transport logs to Puget Sound.  Access points are numerous, such as:

Chambers Lake              14th Avenue, Lacey                                      Route 64 

Restrooms and picnic tables are located here.  

Martin Way pedestrian overpass                                              Routes 62 A or B

Access from South Sound Mall, or Martin Way 1 ½ blocks west of Sleater Kinney

Olympia-Yelm Highway overpass                            Routes 94, 64, 66, 68 

The overpass is west of the William A. Bush Park (which has playground equipment and picnic area), about two blocks west of the College Street/Rich Road/Olympia Yelm Highway intersection.  This entry point is about 2 ½ miles from the Chambers Lake trailhead. 

Olympia Woodland Trail                                                    Route 60

Access to this fairly new trail is at 1600 Eastside Street SE, at the intersection of Eastside and Wheeler.  The 2.5 mile trail is ADA accessible and features benches, picnic shelter, restrooms and over 12,000 native trees and shrubs.  The trail connects with the Chehalis Western Trail in Lacey.

Yelm-Tenino Trail

This former rail bed 14.5 mile trail connects Yelm, Rainier, and Tenino.  The trail runs parallel to Highway 507.  The trail begins near Yelm City Hall (Intercity Transit Route 94), and ends at Tenino City Park.  The Yelm trail head features picnic tables and trail information. 

For more information about the Chehalis-Western Trail or the Yelm-Tenino Trail, see:  www.co.thurston.wa.us/parks/trail

Additional city parks information can be found at:

Olympia:  www.olympiawa.gov/city-services/parks

Lacey:  www.ci.lacey.wa.us/parks

Tumwater:  www.ci.tumwater.wa.us

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