Old fir at Admiralty Inlet Preserve

Old-growth trees with oddly shaped branches are sights to behold at Admiralty Inlet Preserve.

Why It Matters

Old-growth forest, prairie, birds, and stunning views of the Olympic Mountains, Admiralty Inlet, and the beach below are just a few features you can enjoy at Admiralty Inlet Natural Area Preserve, located within Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve.

The 86-acre property includes an amazing old-growth forest and two rare prairies and is full of birds and wildlife. The preserve overlooks over a mile of shoreline on Admiralty Inlet, benefiting marine species like salmon that migrate along its shores. In addition, the two rare prairies (less than 1 percent of Whidbey Island’s prairies remain) both feature golden paintbrush populations, making the preserve one of only 11 sites in the world where this endangered prairie plant occurs naturally.

Admiralty Inlet Natural Area Preserve is home to two rare prairies that feature golden paintbrush, one of only 11 sites in the world where this endangered prairie plant occurs naturally. You can see them in bloom in May.

What you may marvel at the most are the trees! The branches of the old-growth Douglas fir trees twist and turn making their way under and around each other. At over 4 feet in diameter and 250 years old, these trees have weathered many coastal storms. In addition to fir, the forest contains grand fir, western hemlock, Pacific yew, Sitka spruce and red alder trees with most trees over 145 years old. There are lots of snags, providing perfect nesting and feeding areas for all kinds of raptors, owls and songbirds.

There’s a loop trail on the property that is open to the public for walking and nature enjoyment, and a small parking area off Engle Road.

Purchased from Seattle Pacific University in 2005 and 2013, Admiralty Inlet Natural Area Preserve is permanently protected and will remain forever wild.

Get the Admiralty Inlet Preserve Trail Map