Distance: 5.6 miles RT
Elevation Gain: 260 feet
Description: This unique hike climbs to the top of a high bluff on the edge of Whidbey Island, and then snakes down the sandy face to the beach for the return trip. Down below the bluff is a lagoon, a great place to look for birds. Kids will enjoy this hike for the wide-ranging views of the water, the beach to play on, and the exhilaration of hiking on the bluff. I recommend against taking smaller children, as a slip and fall could be scary. Likewise, if children or parents struggle with vertigo, you should consider staying on the beach, or sticking to the part of the bluff that stays lower near the parking lot. This hike is a good choice for any time of year, but is especially nice in the winter and spring, before higher mountain trails are melted out.
Directions: There are two trailheads for this hike; I’ll describe the one at the beach, which allows for the shorter hike for children. (To find directions for the other trailhead, see WTA’s description.) You can either take the ferry over to the island from Mukilteo, or drive west and south from Hwy 20 and Anacortes. From the ferry: Take the ferry from Mukilteo to Clinton, and drive on SR 525 north up toward Hwy 20. Stay on Hwy 20 through Coupeville, then turn left on S. Ebey Road. Keep left where the road turns into Ebey’s Landing Road. Wind down to the water’s edge, and you’ll reach the beachside parking area. From the north, take Hwy 20 west from Burlington toward Anacortes. Before you get to Anacortes, take the left turn where Hwy 20 splits off to the south toward Deception Pass SP and Whidbey Island. Continue on Hwy 20 southbound until you’re almost to Coupeville; turn right onto S. Ebey Road. Follow the directions above from that point. You’ll need a Discover Pass to park at this trailhead.