Portage Creek Wildlife Reserve

No modern day frills here. Just wild! Portage Creek Wildlife Reserve in Arlington, Wa is a 157 acre nature conserve hiding in an area you just wouldn’t suspect. There is very little signage and minimal evidence of any maintenance. The unkept look actually had a pleasantly inviting appeal.

A portion of this land used to be a peat farm owned by Mr. Gene Ammon. It was used for that purpose until 1978 when Gene decided to preserve and restore the land and waterway back to its original splendor. He called it Amen’s Wildlife Sanctuary. In 1995 Mr. Ammon sold to the county and they in turn expanded the sanctuary by purchasing additional acreage nearby.

Due to the lack of maintenance I found it difficult to navigate too far into the preserve with the tall grass and mud holding me back. The trail is very faint as well, but still defined enough to see the route.

Despite the obstacles, I wandered through the grassy meadows enjoying the plant life and the pleasant sounds of Spring. Even two little gardner snakes came out to say hello and so did a red tail hawk. It all beckoned me to come back again with my boots and a picnic lunch. There is certainly more exploring to do here.


From I-5 or SR-9, take SR-530 to 59th Ave SE and turn south.  Follow 59th St to the park entrance (on the right).

*No dogs allowed on this trail


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