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A Winter's Day At My Favorite Beach On Lake Washington - Seward Park

Updated on March 15, 2014

A Wintry Day At The Beach on the Lake

Taking in the Wintry landscape, sights and sounds at the beach on a great lake can be every bit as enthralling as a trip to an ocean beach.

Lake Washington sparkles on the eastern shore of Seattle, Washington State's Emerald City - all 34 square miles of it. Lake Washington is second in size to Lake Chelan, within the state, making Washington the only state with three natural lakes.

While the state's largest lake, Lake Chelan, boasts 55 square miles, Lake Washington covers 35, and Ozette Lake has a mere 12 square miles of surface area, according to the US Geological Survey.

One Wintry day I went down to the Seward Park Beach. Seward Park is a natural peninsula that juts northward into the lake, from the western shore near the south end of the lake. From the two maps below you can orient yourself about the locations in which the photographs were taken.

The park is bounded by a 2.5 mile long paved walking path that touches the shoreline all along the perimeter, affording walkers an ever changing vista of the lake and the shores across the water.

Mercer Island rises out the lake's eastern section and runs north and south, parallel to Seward Park. Any which way I looked I was treated with glimpses of perpetually swelling and waving waters, and lush green plants, in hibernation for the 2013 Spring growth yet to come.

I began my day at the south parking lot, snapping some photographs before moving on to the length of the path that faxes the city to the West, and eventually checking out a few paths at the apex of the hill that fills up the penninsula, prior to catching a cool sunset view, with Mt. Rainier in the distance.

all photo credits: I Took All Photographs

Olmstead Brothers Design Seward Park - to be developed on the Bailey Peninsula

Back in 1903 the reknowned landscape architect Olmstead brothers laid out plans for their vision of preserving this remarkable peninsula on Seattle's Lake Washington as a park site.

all photo credits: I Took All Photographs

Map The Location of Seward Park - see its location in the Greater Seattle Region

seward park, seattle, wa

get directions

My Yellow Car Makes Up For The White Sky - I take my sunshine with me

It's really pretty cloudy in the eastern direction I face, but I think I'll soon see sunshine even better than my car.

all photo credits: I Took All Photographs

During Two Hours of Hiking on Park Trails You Get Thirsty - a camelbak water sling is the easiest way to carry it & keep your hands free

Camelbak Products Women's Charm Road Hydration Backpack
Camelbak Products Women's Charm Road Hydration Backpack

Just the right size for "wearing my water" and keeping dry. I've found myself hiking around the trails at the park for two hours at a time.

I like to keep my hands free for using my camera and a walking stick so hands-free hydration is a smart way to go.


Even Winter's Light Creates Stunning Effects - I relish the high contrast views

Every time I visit Seward Park I feel lucky to take in a tremendous variety of viewpoints, contrasting the dark greens of massive old evergreen trees with water and sky.

all photo credits: I Took All Photographs

Some Prefer to Walk Alonside The Paved Path - happy pooches seem to love this place

Sneakers are, by far, the most popular footwear seen in this park, even in Winter. It's evident, though, that hiking boots also make a showing, alongside happy prints of our four-legged friends. The city is a leash-only area, except in the many dog parks where fido can run free in the spacious fenced-in areas.

My Trusty DSLR Took Most of These Pictures

Pentax K10D 10.2MP Digital SLR Camera with Shake Reduction and 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 Lens
Pentax K10D 10.2MP Digital SLR Camera with Shake Reduction and 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 Lens

This is my all time favorite camera. It has a multitude of presets, and lets me make all the decisions when I choose.

The anti-shake function is tops for me, to counter the little right-hand tremor that sometimes plagues me. It is a real winner.

D-LI50 Battery Grip for Pentax K10D/K20D DSLR Camera
D-LI50 Battery Grip for Pentax K10D/K20D DSLR Camera

This battery grip extends the time you can shoot, when you're out and surrounded by great scenery and captivating events. No need to take time out and retrieve a new battery, risking dropping the expired one. It's so much simpler to have the battery grip attached to the camera, for an all day outing.

Vivitar Wired Remote Shutter Release for Canon EOS and Digital Pentax and Samsung Cameras
Vivitar Wired Remote Shutter Release for Canon EOS and Digital Pentax and Samsung Cameras

For me, the shutter release is invaluable! It means I can set up the camera for a time set, and simply press the trigger, without causing the least movement in the camera, meaning nice sharp intricate shots.

New 32GB Micro Class 10 SD SDHC High Speed Zectron Digital Camera Memory Card FOR Pentax K10D digital Camera Camcorder Video SD Secure Digital Card
New 32GB Micro Class 10 SD SDHC High Speed Zectron Digital Camera Memory Card FOR Pentax K10D digital Camera Camcorder Video SD Secure Digital Card

Having spare memory cards makes it very convenient. I never run out of space, so I'm free to shoot as many shots as it takes, to get the perfect ones.


Trees on The Hill Are Inspiring - even on a Wintry Day

Spending some quiet Winter time out at the park is awe inspiring, especially when I glance up and up at the tallest trees. Bending my neck back, and gazing upwards, it's easy to forget that under my feet lies a paved path, and I can lose myself in the mystery of growth.

Every So Often A Path Leads Up The Hill - a turn of the glance spots a new path

One of the features I most like about Seward Park is that around the entire peninsula there are paths leading up the hillside, each one taking a slightly different direction, and offering its own unique perspective.

People Always Congregate Around Water - yes, that's a boy with rolled-up pants in the water

Since the sun was out, and the cove is sheltered, kids were quick to get in the water. It made me shiver.

Gravelly Beach At The North Edge - lots of footprints in this deep gravelly beach strip

Even the sound of my footsteps in the deep deep gravel along the north edge of the park was happy-making. Looking North across the lake from here one sees the first Lake Washington Floating Bridge. You'll see it in the video below.

all photo credits: I Took All Photographs

Some Of The Forest Trees Are In Bloom - spritely blooms punctuate the greens

Even The Hillside Roots Are Beautiful - I get lost in looking at them

Getting to see this slice of how the roots live underground is one of the treats of spending a day at this local park.

all photo credits: I Took All Photographs

Late Winter Leaves Above The Lake - after a mild Winter new green tips pop out

I find these airy leafy branches as exciting as Spring bulbs.

Even The Bark is Resplendent - just above the beach

What I like about a day at Seward Park Beach is that beauty is to be found at every turn. I feel like I imprinted on gargantuan evergreen trees, and can't seem to get enough of the sight of them.

A Winter Walk On The Park's West Side - it has a fishing pier and swimming float to the left

Walking on the western side of the park,heading northward around a couple bends brings one to the swimming platform that can be reached only by swimming. The fishing pier is tiny, but I like to walk out on it because it's fun to be surrounded by water, even in the Winter.

The Waterfront Trees Are Delightful - the bark holds its own story

I'm fascinated by the trees in the park. These massive deciduous trees line the south shore, near the parking lot. I looped back here just in time to get some wonderful late day photos.

The Beautiful Close of Day Picture - one of the ways I find nourishment

Seward Park's south side is situated just right to catch splendid reflections of Mt. Rainier in a calm Winter lake.

all photo credits: I Took All Photographs

My Pentax Q is My Second Favorite Digital Camera - it's a snap to use and easy to carry

They say that the biggest cause of poor photography is no photography, because we usually leave our cameras at home. With a Pentax Q, and the versatile leather case, below, it's easy to grab this camera as I go out the door.

Pentax 02 Standard Zoom Lens for Pentax Q
Pentax 02 Standard Zoom Lens for Pentax Q

This is the next lens I plan to get. It's still tiny, won't take up much room, but it has features that make it a must have.

Pentax 03 Fish-Eye Lens for Pentax Q
Pentax 03 Fish-Eye Lens for Pentax Q

The next lens I plan to get after the zoom lens. Fish eye lenses give a special perspective we can't get any other way. And it's a good deal too!

Pentax 85226 Q Vintage Leather Case (Brown)
Pentax 85226 Q Vintage Leather Case (Brown)

This is a masterful case. I like that I can unsnap it and leave the top part of the case attached, but dangling out of the way. Then after I take the picture, it's easy to pull the case back up and I normally only fasten one snap while I'm out. Then I can just unsnap it and take impromptu shots. I like that I can zip the memory card out without even taking the case off, merely by unsnapping the right snap.


Lovely Video Tour of Seward Park

This is a phenomenon I've noticed in the past couple weeks - massive numbers of visitors who seem to take a glance and then move on. I wonder - are my first photos wimpy? Please leave your impression, and Thanks!

Your Reflections on My Day at the Lake Washington Beach

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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      An interesting lens, and there seems to be so much to learn.

    • rob-hemphill profile image

      Rob Hemphill 

      5 years ago from Ireland

      Wonderful photographs. The moss and the tree roots is a great image.

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 

      5 years ago

      Beautiful pictures and place. i enjoy your lens.

    • Ben Reed profile image

      Ben Reed 

      5 years ago from Redcar

      Wonderful images - thank you for sharing.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Lake Washington is a sanctuary in the midst of growing urban life. Not only the beautiful parks but the hiking paths, the canoeing around the arboretum, and the streets near the parks that are filled with bicyclists. I often make the drive along the lake instead of fighting the exhaust on I-5

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Some beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      i like lake and also like travel

    • jeffersuan profile image


      5 years ago

      I love Lake Washington! Spent many a winter and summer day there myself!

    • jeffersuan profile image


      5 years ago

      I love Lake Washington! Spent many a winter and summer day there myself!

    • Elis173 profile image


      5 years ago

      Beautiful images, great lens

    • imagelist lm profile image

      imagelist lm 

      5 years ago

      Thanks for the great info...

    • lesliesinclair profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      @IMKZRNU2: Thank you. Thank you. I've been thinking I need to break my decades long hiatus from the coast. Since you live there, I wonder if you spend my time on the beach.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      @Lensmaster...Beautiful Purple Star Lens! Congratulations!

    • IMKZRNU2 profile image


      5 years ago from Pacific Northwest

      I live on the Washington coast and need to head to the Seattle-side more often. Beautiful lens!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Lovely Video Tour of Seward Park, this is nice video. I like this

    • simonwade profile image


      5 years ago

      I like the pics you take, getting close to nature is wonderful. Cheers...

    • jc stone profile image


      5 years ago

      Very nice lens and great photos!

    • PNWtravels profile image

      Vicki Green 

      5 years ago from Wandering the Pacific Northwest USA

      I enjoyed the trip to lovely Seward Park - haven't been there in a couple of years.

    • RitaAnne profile image


      5 years ago

      Nice lake and it's always great to go back to nature :)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      where did you travel ?

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image


      5 years ago

      Great Images

    • Sitabodang LM profile image

      Sitabodang LM 

      5 years ago

      Papier, next time you're in Seward Park or Madrona Park, could you photograph some of the beautiful Madrona Trees? With your camera, I know you could get some wonderful shots of the bark and the branches!

      I'm from Seattle and spent many seasons in both of those parks while I was taking care of children.

    • Kailua-KonaGirl profile image

      June Parker 

      5 years ago from New York

      Looks like a lovely place, though a bit on the too chilly side for me. Thanks for sharing your beautiful photos.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      nice lens, i like it

    • ian-patrick-716 profile image


      5 years ago

      Looks lovely, I'll have to visit one day

    • Ursel001 profile image


      5 years ago

      Great Pictures of of beautiful Lake! I wish I could have been there...

    • ItayaLightbourne profile image

      Itaya Lightbourne 

      5 years ago from Topeka, KS

      I loved seeing parts of the Seattle area that I haven't seen yet. The view of Mt. Rainier reminds me of the commute I did for so many years from Kitsap to Seattle. We would round the bend and see such breath taking views of the mountain. I loved it when 'the mountain was out' for the day and especially at sunrise and sunset! :)

    • Sara Krentz profile image

      Sara Krentz 

      5 years ago from USA

      It's such a beautiful area, and I really enjoyed your lens : )

    • Cynthia Haltom profile image

      Cynthia Haltom 

      5 years ago from Diamondhead

      I lived in Washington State in the tri-cities after hurricane Katrina, but have never had the opportunity to visit the lake. Since my daughter and her family still live in Washington, I will try to visit soon.

    • kathysart profile image


      5 years ago

      What a LOVELY lens. In feel like I have been on a glorious walk and it was such a nice way to start my day. Thank you.

    • artdivision1 lm profile image

      artdivision1 lm 

      5 years ago

      Wow, just beautiful. Wish I was there right now - weather not good here in the UK!

    • EbooksFreeWeekl1 profile image


      5 years ago

      Thanks for sharing such nice nostalgia! Great pictures :)

    • bluelily lm profile image

      bluelily lm 

      5 years ago

      Photographs presented here are extremely beautiful.

    • lesliesinclair profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago

      @anuradhashe: I am especially grateful when this article catches a reader's attention.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      my dream place

    • Fridayonmymind LM profile image

      Fridayonmymind LM 

      5 years ago

      What a beautiful place

    • Fcuk Hub profile image

      Fcuk Hub 

      5 years ago

      Your pictures reminded me I need a holiday badly.

    • Fcuk Hub profile image

      Fcuk Hub 

      5 years ago

      Your pictures reminded me I need a holiday badly.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Washington State is really beautiful. I enjoyed a few days in Kirkland, on lake Washington a few years ago. I'd like to come back and visit more.

    • FallenHalos profile image


      5 years ago

      Upon viewing your site I felt right at home in your forest. Great work. Etheral.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Beautiful pictures.

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 

      5 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      Washington State is beautiful! This lake sounds like a great way to spend a day.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      These are lovely photos. Lake Washington is lovely. I loved the hoot with the ducks and Mt Rainier in the background.

    • pheonix76 profile image


      5 years ago from WNY

      I love this lens -- thanks for sharing your photos and story! I would love to visit Washington State one day soon. :)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I've only been to Washington state once and I was lucky enough to spend a day in the Cascades. The smell is what I remember most - crisp, clean and sweet pine. When I was checking out of my hotel early on the last morning, the hotel staff must have thought I was having some sort of fit. I literally stood in the parking lot just taking great breathfuls of the sweet air that I figured I would never visit again.

    • HSP Connections profile image

      Peter Messerschmidt 

      5 years ago from Port Townsend, WA, USA

      So beautiful and peaceful-- I love the shores of Washington, both fresh water and salt water. Many moons ago I'd sit and look at the lake from the shores in Kirkland-- these days I make my home in Port Townsend and look at the Straits of Juan de Fuca, and walk the local beaches. Thanks for sharing your lovely imagery!

    • Victor243 profile image


      5 years ago from Vietnam

      It is enough to view that the Lake is very beautiful. Thanks for your pictures

    • CampingmanNW profile image


      5 years ago

      Beautiful pictures you have of the Lake. I've been there many times and it is indeed a wonderful place and full of reflections....all right within distance of a major city. Thanks for a fun lens.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      What a day. There are many paths to explore.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Looks lovely and actually warm - our trees will not look like this in Colorado for a couple more months. We just had 10" of snow yesterday still very cold today. So I have some time to wait. Lovely photos.

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 

      5 years ago

      what a beautiful lens...really "imminent"...thx for sharing

    • bushaex profile image

      Stephen Bush 

      5 years ago from Ohio

      I lived in Seattle for a brief period and always thought that local residents often missed the exceptional beauty before their eyes. It helps to have images like these to remind all of us!

    • SheilaMilne profile image


      5 years ago from Kent, UK

      It truly is a beautiful spot. I love the mossy bank and tree roots.


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