6 Reasons to Escape The City – To Hood Canal
If you need a break from the rat race this summer, escape to the quiet, and wild, west side of Hood Canal. Only 2 hours from Seattle and 3 hours from Portland, but a world apart from the hubbub. Here in Brinnon we are 45 minutes from the nearest traffic signal! Besides pure relaxation, vacationers come here in the summer for the crab, shellfish, hiking, kayaking, boating and wildlife. We have 8 vacation rental homes on the water for the perfect beach vacation experience. The peak season is here, so check our availability calendar and book directly with us to avoid the booking fees charged by the big online travel sites.
Here are the top 6 Things to Do at Hood Canal this Summer
1. Go Crabbing
Crab season is June 30 – Sept 3rd in 2018. If you’d like to try crabbing yourself, here are the rules and instructions. And some other handy links depending on your needs:
Local boat launches
McKays in Brinnon for crab gear
Kayak Brinnon for kayak crabbing
2. Go Shellfishing
Hood Canal is known for its oysters and clams. Are there low tides during your stay? Gathering clams and oysters is only practical on most beaches during the daytime on tides lower than 2 feet, although minus tides are better. If you’d like to try shellfishing, bring old tennis shoes, rubber boots, or aqua socks to wear on the beach. Our beaches are full of oysters, the shells are razor sharp and can easily cut, so be careful. Bring a bucket and a rake to get clams. On most beaches you can just rake down to the clams since they are close to the surface. Be sure to fill in your holes. Bring an oyster shucking knife and a pair of gloves. Oysters shells are very sharp so you will want to wear gloves when you open them with a knife. An oyster knife is much different than a regular knife so if you love to eat oysters be sure to bring one along. Bring beach towels or old towels. The towels in the houses are for bathing and not the beach. Don’t forget your shellfish license. You can buy them at the Brinnon store. You can buy an annual license or a 1-3 day license. Everyone has to have one even if you are on private property.
List of Beaches
Rules and Limits
Clam and Oyster season at Public Beaches
Daytime low tides
About our local oysters and clams
If you’d rather just buy some shellfish, you can get them at Taylor Shellfish in Shelton or Hama Hama in Lilliwaup. They often have oysters and clams in Quilcene at Twana Roadhouse or Quilcene Village store. The vacation home kitchens are stocked with cookware and utensils for preparing your meals. Some kitchens will have seasonings, but you should bring your favorites with you. Prepare your dinner then sit outside with your bounty and a beverage and take in the waterfront view, seals, eagles, and the changing tide.
Experience Forest fresh air, vista views from the olympic mountain trails overlooking Hood Canal. Its a hikers paradise with easy to difficult trails to explore for all ages. Bring your camera and check out these local classic waterfall hikes: Rocky Brook Falls, Falls View, and Murhut Falls or check out the Hood Canal Hiking guide from Washington Trails Association.
4. Go Kayaking
Popular launch sites include Pt Whitney, Pleasant Harbor, Seal Rock Campground, Yelviks Boat ramp, Dosewallips State Park, and Triton Cove. Kayak Brinnon provides kayak rentals and tours from Yelviks beach in Brinnon and will deliver kayaks to locations between Quilcene and Potlatch. There is plenty of sealife to view. And, often our local elk herd are present near Dosewallips State Park.
5. Go Boating
Here are some tips and local boating facilities to check out. If you are bringing your own boat and staying at a vacation rental, be sure to ask us where you can park your boat. Some homes may have room, but not all of them. Here is a link to the boat launches. If you don’t have a boat, Narwhal Boats has boats to rent and can outfit you with crab gear!
6. View Wildlife
There are plenty of birds that frequent the tidelands around Hood Canal and along the way on your hikes in Olympic National Forest. Stop off at one of the visitor centers in Quilcene, Brinnon, or Hoodsport to pick up a bird guide. They are an excellent stop for hiking maps and area information. Deer are numerous and Elk can be seen around the Dosewallips State Park. Wildlife information from the Department of Fish and Wildlife can be found Here.