Bayview State Park: Simple Setup, Spectacular Sunset

We just had one of those weekends where we didn’t travel very far from home, but still felt like we were truly getting away.

Skagit Valley is just an hour and a half or so north of Seattle.  Its most famous claim-to-fame is the Tulip Festival that takes place every spring.  The rural area is also spotted with adorably charming small towns, pastoral view after pastoral view, and its situated where one can take in the water to the west and Cascades to the east, including Mount Baker, all in one spot.

In need of a fall getaway, we made the quick trip to see what staying in a state park cabin, with a toddler, might be like.

Bayview State Park: Simple Set up, Spectacular Sunset |

Bayview State Park (also in the town of Bayview) is located on Padilla Bay with views of the larger town of Anacortes as well as the San Juan Islands.  It’s a small state park made up of mostly cabins, campgrounds and RV spots, but it’s quiet, and it has an incredible beach.

Bayview State Park: Simple Set up, Spectacular Sunset |

You’ll hear much more about our trip, from the food we ate to the hikes and other adventures we got into, but I just love how we started off our weekend.

For one, we were relieved to learn it clearly doesn’t take nearly as long to setup “camp” at a cabin as it does when tents are involved.  We also had a better plan: One person works while the other gives full attention to Bergen (2 years old).  Then switch.  No more thinking we can both set things up and “keep an eye on” the little guy.  It just doesn’t work and it’s not worth the time we think we would save.

In what felt like no time, our beds were set, chairs and supplies were out, and food was organized (you’ll see we didn’t need much).  And then, we were munching on appetizers, enjoying refreshments, and making our way to witness sunset on the bay.

Bayview State Park: Simple Set up, Spectacular Sunset |

In addition to rocks, Bergen has now added sticks to his collection habits, so you might imagine he was quite pleased at the selection.  He was so content here, just wanting to explore and gather treasure after treasure.

Bayview State Park: Simple Set up, Spectacular Sunset |

Skagit Valley is also known as an incredible place for bird watchers.  Here we had our first of many great blue heron sightings throughout the weekend.

Bayview State Park: Simple Set up, Spectacular Sunset |

Usually after awhile I’m told to quit it with all the picture taking, but this time, Slaed understood because every time we looked out, the sky had changed, and was showing us something a little different.

Bayview State Park: Simple Set up, Spectacular Sunset |

Where can YOU get away without traveling too far? Share your favorite destination, even if it’s just down the street!  

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10 thoughts on “Bayview State Park: Simple Setup, Spectacular Sunset

  1. We really like the Interpretive Center at the the nearby Padilla Bay National Estuarine Reserve. It’s free! I didn’t know Bayview had cabins. I’ll have to check those out!

    • We did too, Jennifer! We stopped in on Saturday…Bergen loved the hands-on room, and checking out all the fish in the aquarium area. They even had a apple pressing class for older kids–such a neat place!

  2. Pingback: Wanna Be Birdwatchers on Skagit Valley, WA’s Padilla Bay Shore Trail | Wild Tales of...

  3. Pingback: Camping at Bay View - Washington State Parks - Adventure Awaits

  4. What was “staying in a state park cabin, with a toddler” like? I have a 2.5 year old that I’d love to do such a trip (and more) with, so I would love to hear your thoughts, tips, ideas. Wonderful blog, by the way. I made my way here via a Washington State Parks facebook share.

    • Thanks so much for stopping by! I plan on doing another post about our sleeping setup–so I’ll try to get that out soon. I think it’ll help.
      We found it to be a great alternative/compromise to regular tent camping–of course a lot warmer since the cabins are heated. The cabin is tiny, but more than adequate since we mostly just used it for sleeping. There is a bunk bed, but Bergen still sleeps in a crib (our travel crib is the “Go Crib”), which fit in the front corner. We then added a sheet to partition him off so he felt like he had his own space (what he’s used to at home).
      Both nights, we put him down at his regular bedtime & enjoyed the campfire outside the cabin for a while & then could sneak in without disturbing him.
      Feel free to email me with more questions (or ask here) and be on the lookout for posts with photos & more explanation! -Kate

  5. Pingback: Washington’s State Park Accommodations: Inside our Bay View State Park Cabin | Wild Tales of...

  6. Pingback: You Asked, We Answered. Best Washington State Parks with Cabins

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