Experience the small-town charm and big personality of this picturesque place, nestled amid beautiful countryside and offering a wealth of outdoor fun.
Castle Rock is the ideal destination for those looking to get away from big-city bustle. Come to this serene town, which has only about 2,000 permanent residents. Fill your days with hikes along scenic trails and boat trips on tranquil bodies of water. In the evenings, return to peace and quiet in the town’s pretty historic center.
For an overview of this beautiful town, hike to the top of the rock that gave it its poetic name. This distinctive natural landmark, which resembles a castle, has helped guide travelers on their way through this area for centuries. Castle Rock’s official status as a town dates back to the late 19th century. It is in one of Washington State’s oldest territories.
Visit the Castle Rock Visitor Center to gain insight into the town’s past. Learn about the volcano Mount St. Helens, which wreaked havoc when it erupted in 1980. Today it is one of the area’s scenic highlights, as well as a protected area of geological interest. Find out more about this fascinating feature of the landscape at the Mount St. Helens Science and Learning Center.
Another way to get to know the volcano is by exploring the miles of hiking trails winding all around it. Join a guided hiking tour into the crater of the volcano itself, with a geologist leading the way. Head out by yourself on the gorgeous Hummocks Trail, which leads through forest and meadows and offers striking volcano views.
Follow the trail past Coldwater Lake, a perfect spot for a picnic in gorgeous surroundings, as well as a great location for boating. The still waters are clear and clean, ideal for outdoor swimming.
Drive to Castle Rock from Seattle in less than 2 hours or from Portland in an hour. Come in summer to see the surrounding hills brightly decorated with flowers or in winter to explore by ski instead of on foot.