Life Outdoors

Welcome to your next adventure!

The outdoors fits into everyone’s life in unique and personal ways, and we here at WDFW want to foster connections with and appreciation of nature, the wide variety of Washington landscapes, and all forms of outdoor recreation through the Life Outdoors resources below.

Read on for informative blog posts, the Weekender Report of monthly recreational opportunities in your area, links to state and federal lands to explore, and how to share photos of your adventures with us.

We hope to see you in the field and on the water enjoying the Life Outdoors!

Discover recreational opportunities in EasternNorth CentralSouth CentralNorth Puget SoundSouthwest, and Coastal Washington.
 

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Places to explore

There’s something for everyone on your public lands. Check out the state and federal resources below to find public lands and discover a new outdoors adventure. The information below can help those just starting out as well as the seasoned enthusiast find a path to a Life Outdoors.

State lands

Sunrise on hillside at the Quilomene Wildlife Area Unit.

Pass requirements: Discover Pass or Vehicle Access Pass, and hunting and fishing licenses depending on activity

Acreage: More than 1 million acres

Mission: The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife works to preserve, protect and perpetuate fish, wildlife and ecosystems while providing sustainable fish, wildlife, and recreational and commercial opportunities.

Must-see gem:

 

A stream winds through trees

Pass requirements: Discover Pass

Acreage: Roughly 5.6 million acres

Mission: Manage, sustain, and protect the health and productivity of Washington’s lands and waters to meet the needs of present and future generations.

Must-see gems:

A picnic area along the shore with an island in the distance

Pass requirements: Discover Pass and other passes, permits, and fees that vary by site and activity

Acreage: Roughly 120,000 acres

Mission: The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission cares for Washington's most treasured lands, waters, and historic places. State parks connect all Washingtonians to their diverse natural and cultural heritage and provide memorable recreational and educational experiences that enhance their lives.

Must-see gems:

 

Federal lands

A river winds through farmland seen from high above

Pass requirements: America the Beautiful passfederal duck stamp; entry fees vary by site 

Acreage: About 381,000 acres in Washington

Mission: The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people.

Must-see gems:

Mount St. Helens covered in snow

Pass requirements: America the Beautiful passNorthwest Forest Passes 

Acreage: About 9 million acres in Washington

Mission: To sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.

Must-see gem:

Puget Sound with the Cascade mountains in the distance

Pass requirements: America the Beautiful pass; day use and camping fees vary by site

Acreage: More than 438,000 acres in Washington

Mission: The Bureau of Land Management's mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

Must-see gems:

Mount Rainier covered in snow with wildflowers in the foreground

Pass requirements: America the Beautiful pass; day-use and camping fees vary by site 

Acreage: More than 1.8 million acres in Washington

Mission: The National Park Service preserves unimpaired the natural and cultural resources and values of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future generations. The Park Service cooperates with partners to extend the benefits of natural and cultural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout this country and the world.

Must-see gems:

Wild Washington lessons

To provide support for learners in Washington, the WDFW has a new environmental education program called Wild Washington. Parents and educators can explore the variety of wildlife-themed curriculum for elementary, middle school, and high school students.

Wild Washington lessons incorporate disciplines ranging from math and science to art and literature. Lessons align with the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction’s state and national environmental and sustainability learning standards.

The Wild Washington Program also hosts online events periodically throughout the year. Check WDFW's event calendar or Facebook page for more details. Visit WDFW's YouTube channel to watch recorded Wild Washington LIVE! events and visit the Wild Washington Program page for more information.

Share your outdoor adventures for a chance to win outdoor gear!

Send us your best photos of how you spend time outdoors! Your photos may be featured on WDFW’s Facebook and Instagram to celebrate the variety of ways people enjoy outdoor lifestyles and to inspire others to spend time in nature.

Enter our monthly photo contest August-December 2021 for a chance to win a Cabela’s gift card! Each month has a new theme and a new winner.

Participating is simple:

  1. Visit WDFW’s Life Outdoors webpage from now through December 2021 to find out the outdoor recreation theme for the current month.
  2. Submit pictures of you, your friends, or family participating in the month’s featured outdoor recreation theme on WDFW’s website.
  3. When submitting your photo, select #LifeOutdoorsWA in the category section. In the description area, tell us a little about your experience!
  4. On the last Friday of the month, a winner will be selected and featured on WDFW’s Facebook and Instagram. Winners will also be contacted via email to receive their prize.

September's photo themes:

  • WDFW lands with ADA facilities
  • National Public Lands Day

Never miss an opportunity

Enter your email below to receive information on monthly recreational opportunities near you.

Email address