Featured Northwest Lifestyles Outdoor Activities Washington

Winter Washington RV trek ideas

Caption: Take the RV

Written by Dave Helgeson

Editor’s note: The following article is reprinted with permission from the Northwest RVing Blog hosted by MHRV (Manufactured Housing and Recreational Vehicle) Show Association. For information, go to www.northwestrving.com.

Washington is well known for its many historic and scenic State Parks across the state offering day use areas and campgrounds. What many don’t know is that they also oversee the states Sno-Parks and offer activities like First Day Hikes and Adventure Labs.

Let’s take a look at these lesser-known features of Washington State Parks:

Sno-Parks are parking lots that are kept cleared of snow during the winter months. Most serve as staging areas for winter motorized activities like snowmobiling, tracked ATVs, snow biking and non-winterized sports like dog sledding, snowshoeing, back-country skiing, cross country skiing, snowboarding, fat-tire biking or just good old fashion playing in the snow. There are also designated snow play sno-parks with maintained tubing hills. Currently there are over 120 sno-parks available statewide. Many allow overnight camping and also allow you to park an RV for the day if you want to take the family out to play in the snow.

What better place to retreat after playing in the snow than the warmth of an RV. In addition to somewhere to warm up, you can also enjoy a cup of hot chocolate, a change of clothes and a hot shower. Bring along an outdoor firepit and enjoy roasting S’mores after dinner. Many sno-parks are open through April, long after the snow begins to melt, providing a place to spring camp too. Parking permits are required for all sno-parks. Learn more about the Washington State Parks Winter Recreation program and how to obtain a permit here.

Snow park
Snow park in Washington.

Adventure Labs – Are similar in nature to geocaching which has been taking place in state parks for more than 20 years. Washington State Parks have taken geocaching to the next level with “Adventure Labs”.  According to State Parks, “Adventure Lab is a free location-based digital treasure hunt. It’s fun for all ages and a great activity for social distancing. Designed similar to existing geocaching activities, these Adventures will guide you throughout 10 Washington state parks in Island County as you solve questions using physical features within the landscape. With this new kind of interactive experience, you can safely discover the world around you while touching only your mobile phone.”

man holding smart phone
Adventure Lab

Many of the Island County parks included in the Adventure Lab include year-round campgrounds giving you one more reason to take the family RV camping.

It is our hope that you will take part in one of these lesser known features offered by Washington State Parks with your RV in the weeks and months to come. For more information on Washington State Parks stop by their booth or sit in on one of their seminars at the 2022 Seattle RV Show February 17th – 20th at Lumen Field Event Center.

Author headshot
Dave Helgeson

Author: Dave Helgeson, DaveH@northwestrving.com Dave Helgeson is the MHRV show director. He and his wife love to travel across the west in their RV. Dave writes about all things RVing but loves to share destinations and boondocking advice.