DECEPTION PASS STATE PARK
Deception Pass State Park is a 4,134-acre marine and camping park with 77,000 feet of saltwater shoreline, and 33,900 feet of freshwater shoreline on three lakes. Rugged cliffs drop to meet the turbulent waters of Deception Pass. The park is outstanding for breath-taking views, old-growth forests and abundant wildlife.
The human history of the park dates back thousands of years, when the first people settled in the areas now known as Cornet Bay, Bowman Bay and Rosario. Eventually, the land was settled by the Samish and the Swinomish. They lived on the land until the early 1900s.
During his Northwest coastal explorations, Captain George Vancouver became the first European to identify the area near Whidbey Island as a passage, which he named "Deception Pass." A 1925 act of Congress designated the property for public recreation purposes. In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built roads, trails, buildings and bridges to develop the park.
The name "Deception Pass" derived from Captain Vancouver's realization that what he had mistaken for a peninsula was actually an island. He named that island "Whidbey" in honor of his assistant, Joseph Whidbey, who was at his side when Vancouver realized the mistake. The captain named the inlet at which he was anchored "Deception Pass" to commemorate the error.
A Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to Washington state parks for day use. For more information about the Discover Pass and exemptions, please visit the Discover Pass web page
The park has 167 tent sites, 143 utility spaces, five hiker/biker sites, two dump stations, seven restrooms (four ADA) and six showers (four ADA).
Camping is at three locations in the park; 18 tent sites and two utility sites are at Bowman Bay, two tent sites and 58 utility sites at Sunrise Resort and 147 tent sites and 83 utility sites are at Cranberry Lake. Maximum site length is 60 feet (may have limited availability).
To reserve a campsite, call (888) CAMPOUT or (888) 226-7688.
Group Accommodations:There are three group camps, all primitive in nature.
Group camp 1 accommodates up to 50 people. It has fire circle, picnic shelter, vault toilet and five tent pads. It provides two adirondack (three-sided) sleeping shelters that combined sleep 16 people.
Group camp 2 accommodates 25 people. It has fire circle, picnic shelter, five picnic tables, and vault toilet. It provides one adirondack shelter that sleeps eight.
Group camp 3 has the same facilities and capacities as group camp 2 with the exception of the picnic shelter.
Fees vary with size of the group. To reserve, call (888) CAMPOUT or (888) 226-7688.
The Cornet Bay launch is open in winter.
The park provides five saltwater and three freshwater boat ramps, plus 710 feet of saltwater dock and 450 feet of freshwater dock. All motors are prohibited on Pass Lake, and only electric motors are allowed on Cranberry Lake.
A daily watercraft launching permit and a trailer dumping permit may be purchased at the park.
Annual permits also may be purchased at State Parks Headquarters in Olympia, at region offices, online, and at parks when staff is available.
The park also offers 1,980 feet of saltwater moorage. A boat pumpout facility is located at Cornet Bay.
Moorage fees are charged year round for mooring at docks, floats and buoys from 1 p.m. to 8 a.m. Daily and annual permits are available. For more information, call (360) 902-8844.