Most Pierce County area trails including trails in and near Tacoma, are open. While most Pierce County area parks are closed, you can go to the TRAILS for solo recreation such as walking. Note that playgrounds, bathrooms, and other amenities remain closed. Parking is also still closed at many places but not all.
I have provided links to official sites so you can confirm details before you head out. This information was current as of 5/4, but things do change. You are asked to use social distancing at any trail you access.
If you have strong feelings about what should be open or closed please contact your elected officials. I am absolutely not in charge of any of that. For information on Washington State’s phased reopening you can see the official state site here. Thanks.
Pierce County/Tacoma and Nearby
Pierce County Parks
Note that this refers to parks operated by Pierce County Parks, but that doesn’t mean every park in the county, as some are operated by the other municipalities on this list. I know that’s a bit confusing.
From their site:
Pierce County will restore public use of parks with protocols and guidelines to keep the public safe. Park and trailhead parking lots will open May 5, while Chambers Creek Regional Park will open earlier – on May 1. Parks outdoor spaces will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.
Restrooms will remain closed at all parks and trailheads. Additional protocols have been created to promote respectful use including limiting travel, shortened stays, and social distancing measures. Recreation Centers, playgrounds, picnic shelters and fields at athletic complexes will remain closed.
These services align with Governor Jay Inslee’s announcement, authorizing increased access to public lands for outdoor recreational outings for families.
You are asked to limit travel, the length of your stay, and contact with others, and to observe protocols while on the trail. More on all of that here.
From their site:
Parks & trails remain open for walking, running, and enjoying nature but please remember that they are great places to be for solitary recreation, not group activities. If it’s crowded choose another trail, beach or go to a different park. Maintain a distance of 6′ from others. Note that parking, playgrounds, restrooms, and other amenities remain closed.
While the governor has reopened fishing and golfing, the Point Defiance Marina and the Meadow Park golf course remain closed while they prepare to reopen.
Trails are open within the following city parks:
Bradley Lake Park
Clarks Creek North
Clarks Creek South
Other trails open for use:
Puyallup Loop Trail
All other amenities including parking and restrooms are closed. Practice social distancing and responsible recreation. More on that here.
Lakewood parks and trails have reopened on a limited basis.
Parks within the city of Lakewood will reopen to the public Tuesday, April 21 on a limited basis.
Park trails and open space areas in all of Lakewood’s 14 parks, as well as the dog park at Fort Steilacoom Park, will now be open from 7 a.m. to sunset.
Restrooms, playgrounds, picnic shelters, sport courts, sport fields and skate parks will remain closed. Group gatherings are not allowed.
Parking lots at Harry Todd Park, American Lake Park, Wards Lake Park and Springbrook Park will also remain closed to vehicles, however walk in access is allowed.
The front gate and parking lots at Fort Steilacoom Park will be open to allow cars to park in an effort to limit the impact on the surrounding neighborhoods. Please be aware of social distancing when parking in these areas.
The American Lake boat launch will open each day. Daily launch fees apply or you can use your annual pass, however, please note, no annual passes will be sold until further notice. (View the state Department of Fish and Wildlife website for most up to date information on regulations around fishing in light of the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order.)
If you choose to visit a city park, please adhere to the following health guidance tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More on that here.
In keeping with current health recommendations, keep plenty of distance between yourself and others walking along the trails. To keep our kids safe and to prevent the potential for spreading the COVID-19 virus, all playground equipment, basketball courts, bathrooms, picnic tables/shelters and the skate park currently are closed, which is why we are recommending you explore our trails instead.
Specifics from their site:
While trails remain open to the public, PenMet Parks is expanding its list of facility closures as part of the community effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.
- Effective immediately, beach access areas, playgrounds, sport courts, and picnic areas are closed to the public.
- The following parks have been closed: Narrows Park, Sunrise Beach, Tacoma DeMolay Sandspit (Bella Bella Beach), Rosedale Park and Courts, Hale Pass Park and Fox Island Fishing Pier.
- The trails at Sehmel Homestead Park remain open, including access to the upper parking lot. Please respect our neighbors by using the main entrance of the park.
- The Cushman Trail remains open.
- Dog Parks will remain open.
- Park restrooms are also closed at this time, we remind you to “Go before you go”.
- PenMet Parks will continue to monitor park usage and activity at all locations to ensure visitors are practicing safe social distancing.
Park trails remain open at Sehmel Homestead Park, McCormick Forrest Park, Rotary Tails and Harbor Family Park for visitors to walk, cycle and enjoy nature.
Mad props to Key Pen for this super handy chart showing what’s open at their parks.
What else? While you are still encouraged to stay close to home, Sumner and Bonney Lake area friends may want to access one of Auburn’s trails. They also have parking open.
Trails and open space with the exception of the trail at Victor falls are open. More information on that as well as fishing updates:
The Allan Yorke Park beach area including the swim area and volleyball court along with the city’s playground equipment, sports courts, skate park, and restrooms remain closed until further notice. Park open space and trails (except for the trail at Victor Falls Park) remain open; however, all users should continue to adhere to social distancing guidelines. More here
Governor Inslee announced that state lands, fishing and hunting will begin reopening on May 5, 2020. Here is a link to information from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife: https://medium.com/@wdfw/frequently-asked-questions-reopening-state-lands-fishing-and-hunting-967a6726fe26.
Although fishing will be open on Lake Tapps, the Allan Yorke Park boat launch is anticipated to reopen on May 23. The most recent update from Cascade Water Alliance states that Lake Tapps is expected to reach recreational levels the week of May 11. Additionally, Pierce County is estimating the opening of the new boat launch at North Lake Tapps Park on May 23.
I am updating my list for South King County now.
As ever, I remind you that I’ve provided links so you can confirm all details before you head out. Policies and openings/closures have been changing fast. Thanks for doing that!