Built as a railroad in the late 1800s, this gently-rolling rail-to-trail takes people between Chehalis and South Bend near the Washington coast. Come experience the scenery that greeted people on the Northern Pacific rail line that has since been converted to recreational use!
The Willapa Hills Trail, formally known as Willapa Hills State Park Trail, is a passageway for non-motorized vehicles to make their way between Chehalis and the Willapa Bay area just east of the Pacific Ocean. The trail is 56 miles in total, with 22 between Chehalis and Pe Ell continuously accessible as of early June 2016.
Continuing updates to the trail between Chehalis and Pe Ell make west Lewis County a prime destination for cyclists, horseback riders and day hikers looking for a relatively flat and gently rolling trail excursion. Overseen and patrolled by Washington State Parks, the trail is well-maintained and taken care of.
Passing next to historic farms, through lush wooded areas and alongside the beautiful Chehalis River, the trail is a perfect place to get away from urban life and enjoy the country for awhile. Make an excursion to the coast a possibility and camp out at Rainbow Falls State Park, which offers prime camping along a small waterfall in the Doty area.
Want to ride a horse? Enough clearance exists throughout the trail for horseback riders to enjoy a bit of softer ground while still following the trail’s path.
Using a bicycle? We recommend bikes other than lightweight road bikes for the trail, as most of the trail is finely crushed ballast and gravel. Fat-tire bicycle enthusiasts will love the trail for this reason alone!
The Willapa Hills Trail is maintained and patrolled by Washington State Parks. As such, a Discover Pass is required to utilize trailheads which exist at the following locations:
Pe Ell: Fourth Avenue and Front Street* (Map)
Doty: Meskill Road (Map)
Dryad: Rainbow Falls State Park (Map)
West Lewis County: Ceres Hill Road (Map)
Adna: Dieckman Road* (Map)
Chehalis: Hillburger Road* (Map)
An asterisk denotes the availability of equestrian parking at the trailhead.
For more information on the Willapa Hills Trail, check out Lewis County Community Trails at their website or join the Facebook group for Willapa Hills Trail Fans or visit the State Parks webpage for the trail.