Where’s your favorite park?
I bet you think I’m going to say Green Lake, don’t you. Especially those of you that connect with me on Foursquare and see my daily check-ins. But the truth is, I don’t think Green Lake is that special – it’s nice, pleasant to look at, large, but not special. It’s crowded for a start – and its hard to think of a park as special while you’re sharing it with 400 of your closest joggers, dog walkers, longboarders, rollerbladers, cyclists…get the point yet?
So, I don’t always go to just Green Lake Park. Where else can you go in north Seattle, you ask? Well, I’m a huge advocate of Discovery Park in Magnolia. It beats the Green Lake loop with 11.81 miles of walking/hiking trails. That’s a lot of miles. Whenever I’ve been it seems a little less crowded than Green Lake too – but perhaps it has just as many people, spread out over the larger space. I like that Discovery Park has some really closed in, wooded, tiny trails – and then it also has beach and wide open spaces. Great for the dog. The views are amazing, and last time I went I also spotted an enormous owl (and yes, I was actually a little scared of it)! You can go there for a few hours and feel more like you’re on a hike than in a city park, which is really what I’m looking for.
I also venture out a little further than Seattle, north to Richmond Beach in Shoreline (head up Aurora and turn left on 185th). The beach itself isn’t overly huge, but the wildlife you get to see is pretty amazing. I saw this 16-legged sea star on the beach there not too long ago:
And another time I got pretty darn close to this bald eagle:
During the winter months, a large part of the beach is designated “off leash” for the dogs and they love splashing around and running through the sand. Just be sure to keep an eye on them during low tide – the train tracks that run by there aren’t fully fenced around and during low tide a dog can get onto the tracks.
For those looking to take the kids out somewhere fun, Sandel Park in Greenwood is undergoing renovations beginning this week, as reported on the Phinneywood blog. The project should be finished in January and provide a better, more visible place for the kiddos to play, with a wider assortment of play equipment.