Penrose Point State Park
A bald eagle sits on a seaweed-covered rock while kids peer into the glassy waters of Mayo Cove, pointing out sea stars and crabs. Welcome to life at Penrose Point State Park.
At low tide, this Puget Sound park is a clam and oyster bonanza in season. Crabbing and saltwater fishing are also popular here. Catch a glimpse of majestic Mount Rainier to the east; the enormous mountain seems to be floating on air.
As the tide comes up, beachgoers retreat to the grassy knoll above Carr Inlet and the forest beyond. Trails are rife with Douglas-fir, western red cedar, red alder, Pacific madrone and big-leaf maple and highlight an abundant understory of ferns, huckleberry and trillium.
After your hike or bike ride, wind down at a campfire and enjoy a shellfish feast or game of horseshoes, then pitch your tent in a shaded campsite. Boaters may sleep in the comfort of their vessels mooring along the dock or on a buoy.
Penrose Point State Park is a richly forested, 237-acre marine and camping park on the shores of Puget Sound. The park has nearly 2 miles of saltwater frontage on Mayo Cove and Carr Inlet.
Discover Pass: A Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to state parks for day use. For more information about the Discover Pass and exemptions, please visit the Discover Pass web page.
Use our interactive ADA recreation map to search for other state parks with ADA amenities and facilities.
Picnic & day-use facilities
The park has two picnic shelters without electricity and 60 unsheltered picnic tables. All are first come, first served. A spacious day-use area at the beach features a large lawn, picnic tables, braziers, a small picnic shelter and a restroom.
- 2.5 miles of hiking trails
Water activities & features
- 158 feet of dock
- 270 feet of moorage
- Oyster harvesting
- Personal watercraft use
Other activities & features
- Beach exploration
- Bird watching
- Fire circles (3)
- Horseshoe pits (2)
- Wildlife viewing
A self-guided interpretive trail called A Touch of Nature was built by Eagle Scouts in 1982 and renovated by a second group of Eagle Scouts in 1991. The trail is located in the day-use area, and extends for 0.2 mile.
Junior Ranger Programs are held on Saturday's during the summer. Check with park staff for a list of Junior Ranger Programs and specific times.
- The park has no lifeguard and no designated swim area.
- A recreational license is required for fishing and shellfish harvesting at Washington state parks. For regulations, fishing season information or to purchase a recreational license, visit the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.
- Volleyball can be played on the lawn in the day-use area, but visitors must bring their own free-standing volleyball sets.
- Bay Lake, a popular trout fishing lake, is located a mile from the park. A boat launch is available there, but parking requires a Discover Pass or a Department of Fish and Wildlife Vehicle Access Pass.
- Printable park brochure (PDF).
Located Pierce County on Puget Sound, Penrose Point provides 158 feet of dock. A picnic area with tables, braziers and a fire ring with benches are located near the dock. A short trail leads uphill to a small picnic shelter, visitor parking lot, campground and public restrooms. The nearest public boat launch is located in the town of Home, three miles from the park.
The park also provides 270 feet of moorage, eight moorage buoys. Moorage fees are charged year round for mooring at docks, floats and buoys from 1 p.m. to 8 a.m. daily and annual permits are available. For more information, call (360) 902-8844.
Penrose Point State Park is a public marina with an accessible pumpout. The facility is open in the summer 24 hours a day, except for extreme low tides. This facility has a floating dock available year around. You will encounter a EMP Sani-Sailor pumpout at this facility. A slip is available for pumpout usage. Access to this pumpout is limited to vessels with a length of no more than 30 feet. There is a stationary pumpout. The stationary pumpout is located on the dock. This facility has a Porta-Potty dump station. The Portao-Potty dump station is located on the dock, next to the pumpout.
Latitude: 47° 15' 30.31" (47.25842)
Longitude: 122° 45' 10.13" (-122.75281)
The camp provides 82 standard campsites one hiker/biker site, one site, one dump station and three restrooms (two with showers). The campground is in the woods, and all sites are shady or partly shady. None of the campsites are on the water, but the beach is only a short walk away. Typical campsites accommodate a vehicle or combination of up to 35 feet. A few sites can handle longer vehicles or combinations, but the campground roadways are narrow and winding.
Reservations for camping are available May 15 through Sept. 15 and can be made up to 9 months in advance. Camping is available on a first-come, first-serve basis September 14 thought May 14.
Check-in time is 2:30 p.m.
Check-out time is 1 p.m.
The park offers a group camp which accommodates 20 to 50 people in tents or RVs. Facilities include a shelter with three picnic tables, a fire ring with benches, water and a vault toilet. Restrooms with flush toilets are located nearby in the day-use area. Restrooms with showers are located on the campground. A dump station is located near the park entrance. Fees vary with size of the group. Reservation for the group camp are available year-round.
Reservations & fees
Services & supplies
Firewood is available for purchase at the park through out the summer.
Large stumps with springboard notches can be seen in the park, evidence of early logging activity. The community played an important role in the development of Penrose Point. The park was initially created out of a swamp, now the day-use area.
The name honors Dr. Stephen Penrose, a Pennsylvania native who served as president of Whitman College in Walla Walla from 1884 to 1934. For many years, Dr. Penrose and his family spent their summers vacationing on what is now park property. A prominent church and educational leader in the Northwest, Dr. Penrose was a firm believer in outdoor recreation for children.