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As weather warms this weekend, enjoy our local waterfalls –
Take precautions, as the waters are still very cold!

The scenic beauty and diverse ecosystems on display at Deschutes Falls Park will once again be available for the public’s enjoyment after its scheduled fall reopening. Photo credit: Steve Bloom, The Olympian, taken July 13, 2017.

As Thurston County weather warms, here are waterfalls, rivers and saltwater destinations

Excerpt from The Olympian via Yahoo!:

As the Olympia area is on track to see temperatures in the 80’s over Mother’s Day weekend, now is the perfect time to plan a local getaway to a peaceful spot in nature near the water. Some time near the water could be ideal for more than just enjoying a relaxing afternoon. It could be good for your health, too.

In fact, studies have found a positive correlation between lakes, rivers, oceans and other blue spaces – and mental health. That’s good news for residents in the Olympia-Lacey-Tumwater area, which is surrounded by a range of natural water features.

In the Yelm Area

Deschutes Falls Park

25005 Bald Hill Rd. SE, Yelm, WA 98597 9am-dusk daily

Situated in a rural part of the county but still a reasonable drive for a visit is Deschutes Falls Park in Yelm. Parts of the pathway to the 25-foot waterfall in this 155 acres of mixed habitat is fairly underdeveloped and there are steep grades, so proper footwear is essential. There are also a plethora of native plants, a 70-foot canyon and a 400-foot gorge, as well as natural rock monoliths and an historic log cabin. To reach the waterfall, which you can view from a railed deck, follow the main path from the parking lot for about one-quarter of a mile. Veer to the right at the bottom of the hill when the path splits. To reach the park, starting from the SR 510 and SR 507 intersection at Yelm, take Bald Hill Rd. SE 15 miles until you reach the park entrance, where there is a parking lot.

Read more about more Thurston parks.


  • Editor’s note: Saturday, May 6th was the last official measurement of any precipitation at Olympia Regional Airport, although a few places in Thurston County experienced a brief shower Monday night. With virtually no rain in the long-range forecast and a stretch of significantly warmer weather coming, mid-May could be near record dry here.

Posted by Steve on May 11, 2023 at 10:27 am | Permalink

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