North Kitsap - Short Hikes
Quiet Place Park: This park is about 1/2 mile up Ohio Ave. from downtown Kingston. Perched above Puget Sound it provides several short loop trails through the forest. A bench overlooking a fern bowl provides a restful place to just relax. The walking is easy with level trails and only a gradual elevation gain or loss. Parking is limited so there are rearly more than a few people there at any time.
Kingston North Beach: Kingston’s “North Beach” (aka Saltair Beach) is just north of the ferry terminal. Park in town and walk along the west side of the ferry holding-area and down the sidewalk to stairs which take you to the beach. With easy access it is suitable for a casual stroll with, or without children, to look at marine and bird life or to have a beach picnic. It is possible to walk the 5 miles to Eglon if you watch for really low tides.
The Eglon Trail: The trail extends across WA State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) land from the north end of Parcell's Road (just west of Kingston off of Hwy. 104) for about 1.5 miles before intersecting with the Eglon Road. There is a small parking area at the end of Parcell's Rd. The trail has a gradual decent going north (thus uphill returning) and is frequently used by local residents. There is one short location that has eroded but is passable. It is difficult to locate the intersection with Eglon Rd. unless you know where it is (at the sharp left turn in Hoffman Rd. NE about 9/10 mile from Eglon).
PUD #1 Trails: Located on the west side of Ohio Avenue in Kingston is a deep ravine owned by Kitsap Public Utility District # 1. It is not a park, but the PUD has an agreement with the Great Peninsula Conservancy that allows public use of the trails within the watershed. The main trailhead is just north of 4th St. via a set of stairs.; it can also be reached by going west on 4th St. off of Ohio Ave. The trail then follows "Whisper Creek' through the wooded valley. You can either walk up from town or park by the Quiet Place Park across Ohio Avenue. Be prepared for some mud if it has been rainy.
Carpenter Lake Trail: Located behind Gordon Elementary School, this serene section of wetland is easily accessible to young and old. The trail is wide and gentle as it descends through a wooded area about a quarter mile to the lake-side. A boardwalk takes you over the meadow and bog surrounding Carpenter Lake to a second large and comfortable viewing platform. This is a good place to take photos, do some painting and drawing, or just be still and enjoy this secluded part of Kingston.
Stillwaters Trails: Stillwaters Environmental Center is located close to downtown Kingston at 26059 Barber Cut Off Rd. In addition to offering classes and partnering with other groups and agencies on environmental projects, they welcome visitors to enjoy the trails they have built on their 6-acre property. You can stop at the office to pick up a map and then walk the trails at your leisure. An hour will give you plenty of time to enjoy the trail system. The “Salt Marsh Platform” is a nice destination with a view of, yes, the salt marsh.
Indianola Woodland Preserve: This small woodland preserve is located on the north side of the Indianola Road just opposite Gerald Cliff Avenue. The well-marked loop trail is a mile long. It is narrow primitive trail, steep in places, but well maintained. The trail travels uphill through a mature forest of alder, maple, and fir. It is a delightful place to enjoy the solitude of a fall morning or afternoon in a typical and lovely Northwest woodland.
North Kitsap Heritage Park Nature Walks: NKHP is an 800 acre located between Kingston and Indianola. In addition to an extensive trail system for those who want hikes through a variety of terrain there are also several walks suitable for an easy stroll or for families with small children.
Miller Bay Nature Trail: Starting from the Miller Bay Road entrance go to the left (north) on the path between the two ponds. Once past the lakes the trail goes meanders through the forest until reconnecting with the Spine Line Trail. Turning right will take you back to the parking area after a walk of about 1/2 mile. (note: the trail is not shown on the Park map.)
Cross Country Trail: This approximately 1.5 mile round trip ends at an active beaver pond. Start from the south end of Norman Road (off West Kingston Road). Parking is tight, so be courtious. Walk around the gate and take the old logging road to the first connecting road/trail to the right. As you follow that trail note how different the forest is on the north side, which has been thinned to promote a healther forest, and the south side which was not thinned. Follow the trail until it turns left (south) and becomes a pleasent narrow trail through the forest. It will come out near the east end of the Spine Line Trail. Going right (west) from there will take you to a beaver pond. You can return either by reversing this course or by going east back to the road you started on.
Note: the trail may be muddy after a lot of rain.