Parks and Beaches

Northwest Paddling Festival

The Northwest Paddling Festival is the largest event of its kind in the Pacific Northwest. It is held at Lake Sammamish State Park in Issaquah in early May and features all types of watercrafts from sea kayaking to stand-up paddling. This festival brings sports retailers, manufacturers and athletes together in one location.

During the course of the two-day celebration of paddle sports, attendees can demo boats, take kayak tours, attend seminars and check out the latest in gear and accessories from the more than 60 paddle sports businesses.

We had attended this festival last year and had fun trying various canoes in the lake. So we made it a point to keep a track of the event this year too. And we attended it this year again as it makes a good start for summer.

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Lake Sammamish State Park is a 512-acre day-use park with 6,858-feet of waterfront on Lake Sammamish.

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For expert paddlers or those looking to try sea kayaking or stand-up paddling for the first time, this is a place to be to get started for a summer on the water.

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There is a nominal fee for the day to demo the watercrafts and we spent about 4 hours of the Saturday afternoon there.

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There were various paddle sports retailers, manufacturers and athletes together in one location. We could shop, compare and browse the best in paddle sports brands side-by-side.

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It was a sunny day and the colorful kayaks looked lovely in the bright sun.

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Even all the other gear was so colorful that I couldn’t stop taking the pictures.

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I did demo the sit on top and inflatable kayaks this time.

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My husband and I also enjoyed their tandem kayaks together.

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Lake Sammamish is 7 miles long and 1.5 miles wide.

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We stayed beyond 5:00 PM when officially the festival ends and the retailers pack all their kayaks and prepare to leave. We roamed for a while, clicked few pictures and headed on our way back home. This was a wonderful start of summer.

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Saint Edward State Park

Blast from the Past!

Come Travel Along

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In a fine winter weekend the sun was shining out and we decided to drive to this park. It is a beautiful setting in nature with its fresh air, trees and moss. There is also a gorgeous old building on the grounds that used to be a Catholic seminary until 1977. There are amazing playgrounds and huge fields for running and tossing a ball. There is also access to Lake Washington shoreline.

We found a quiet sense of peace and solitude in this grand forested setting. We enjoyed the smell of the ferns and trees and just listened to the sounds of nature. There are lots of trails to wonder through the huge forest. I’ve yet to walk any of the trails, but they look fantastic.

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Juanita Beach Park

This is a beautiful and popular park in the area to walk around, have a picnic, or just relax and enjoy the view. We often go to this place over weekends for a relaxing stroll and enjoy the view.

These pictures were taken when we went there last month on a sunny Sunday evening.

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As we parked in the parking area we walked to a grassy area with trees providing shade.

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There were many people relaxing in the sun or walking and kids playing around.

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There is a sandy beach with long walkways stretching out over the water.

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This wooden dock goes out in the water and loops around.

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On one side is the area for boats to come and park. Since there was no boat then; this place was a playground for many ducks.

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We started walking on the dock.

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As this is a family friendly park there were many people with their pets walking in both directions.

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The view is beautiful with plenty of ducks playing in the water.

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We continued on the dock and enjoyed the beautiful view of the sun, the water, the ducks and the houses and trees on the other side.

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As we completed the loop we reached an open playing area for the kids with some rides, benches and picnic tables.

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The sight was lovely with the kids playing, dogs running, people enjoying and ducks dancing in water.

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We stayed there for a while and walked for another loop.

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We enjoyed our evening. I like the wonderful layout of this park and would recommend it as a great place to go and enjoy with family or friends.

 

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These both shots were taken another evening after sunset!

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Hamilton Viewpoint Park

While for one of our picnic at Alki beach we stopped at this park for the spectacular view of the downtown Seattle that it offers. It is a very small park at one end of the Alki Beach and it showcases Seattle’s urban and natural beauty. There are few benches and a beautiful lawn to relax and enjoy the eye-catching view of the downtown Seattle, Elliott Bay, the port and the Cascade Mountains. This is a great spot to take a photo with the Seattle skyline. We also took many pictures of the views. We sat there for a while and stared at the mountains, the shipping lanes, the cruise ships, ferries, cargo ships and all the activity at the port. This park truly offers one of the most picturesque and complete views of Seattle city.

Saint Edward State Park

IMG_4580

On a fine winter weekend the sun was shining out and we decided to drive to this park. It is a beautiful setting in nature with its fresh air, trees and moss. There is also a gorgeous old building on the grounds that used to be a Catholic seminary until 1977. There are amazing playgrounds and huge fields for running and tossing a ball. There is also access to Lake Washington shoreline.

We found a quiet sense of peace and solitude in this grand forested setting. We enjoyed the smell of the ferns and trees and just listened to the sounds of nature. There are lots of trails to wonder through the huge forest. I’ve yet to walk any of the trails, but they look fantastic.