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West Hylebos State Park
In the city of Federal Way, WA.


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West Hylebos State Park

West Hylebos Wetlands State Park is a 68-acre day-use park outstanding for its wetland vegetation and rare plants. More than 110 species of birds and 62 varieties of plants populate the park. The park also features ponds and sinkholes.

Location:
West Hylebos is located in King County between south 348th and southwest 356th Street; 1st Avenue South and Pacific Highway South (Hwy. 99). The park is in the incorporated city of Federal Way.

Acreage:
Approximately 68 acres.

Acquired:
The park was acquired in five parcels; the first in 1981 and the last in 1987.

Historical Background:
The park and its one-mile nature trail are the work of Francis and Ilene Marckx. Their home is adjacent to the park.

Facilities:
None

Of Special Interest:
In this park, a nature trail, most of it on a wood path plankway, loops through a forest and bog at the headwaters of Hylebos Creek. The park is known for its ecological significance and rare bird and plant life.
Signposts on the nature trail identify more than 50 different plants. Other interpretive signs explain natural phenomena.

Activities:
Trails
1 mi. Hiking Trails

Other
Bird Watching
Interpretive Activities
Wildlife Viewing

Featured Creatures
Mammals
Chipmunks
Coyotes
Minks
Raccoons
Squirrels
Weasels

Birds
Crows or Ravens
Doves or Pigeons
Ducks
Eagles
Geese
Grouse
Gulls
Hawks
Herons
Hummingbirds
Jays
Ospreys
Owls
Snipes
Woodpeckers
Wrens

Fish & Sea Life
Salmon

Environmental Features
Physical Features
Sinkholes, a foot or so in diameter at the surface and over 20 feet deep, are viewable from side platforms along the trail. Also visible from these platforms are glacial erratics, drumlins, and the sticky black sediments deposited by the ice sheet that covered the area over 12,000 years ago.
One section of the park showcases "living fossils" -- trees like coast redwood, ginkgo and giant sequoia, planted in the park as examples of the forests that covered the region some 30 million years ago.
There is 25-30 inches of annual rainfall.

Plant Life
Cedar
Douglas Fir
Hemlock
Spruce
Alder
Apple
Ash
Maple
Rhododendron
Rose
Berries
Ferns
Moss or Lichens

Driving Directions:
Located in the city of Federal Way, Wash., in the region of Puget Sound.

From I-5:
Take exit 142B (SR 299, Federal Way) 1.6 miles south of Federal Way, and head west on S. 348th St. to Pacific Hwy., 0.2 mile. Continue west on S. 348th for 0.8 mile, and watch for 4th Ave., a hard-to-spot, single-lane road to the south just east of a power substation. Turn south onto 4th, and in two blocks turn east at a sign into a small gravel parking lot.

Comments:

Piter rates West Hylebos as: 5; Excellent

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Courtesy of Washington State Park and Recreation Commission

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