Camas and Washougal are side-by-side cities located in East Clark County, on the Columbia River in southwest Washington. Our community is a part of the Portland-Vancouver metropolitan area and are part of the “Gateway to the Gorge.” We have all of the cultural and shopping advantages of large cities with the added benefit of living in a small, friendly community. Camas and Washougal have a combined population of over 38,000.
Camas is situated in the east Clark County and is home to approximately 23,000 residents and several large, hi-tech manufacturing industries. Camas offers Parks and Recreation programming and an extensive trails system.
Downtown Camas Downtown Camas centers around a unique drive-through downtown core on Northeast Fourth Avenue. The older downtown buildings have been preserved and are utilized by businesses to make this a busy community center. Trees and planter areas on this street make the downtown mall a beautiful and appealing place to visit and shop.
Major Events in Camas Downtown Camas and its surrounding parks play host to numerous events throughout the year. The Mother’s Day Plant Fair & Health and Safety Fair are in downtown Camas on the Saturday before Mother’s Day from 9 am to 4 pm. The CamTown Youth Festival is in mid-June at Crown Park and Camas Days is held the fourth weekend in July. Downtown also celebrates Boo Bash on the Wedensday before Halloween and its “Hometown Holidays” event takes place on the First Friday on December from 5 – 8 pm. For more information on events visit our “Events” page by CLICKING HERE.
Camas Farmers Market The Camas Farmers Market’s opening day will be in June and will go through September. The market will provide local produce, flowers, freshly harvested seasonal produce, pastured meat, eggs or crafted cheese. www.camasfarmersmarket.org
Camas First Fridays Downtown Camas offers many events and gatherings throughout the year. “Camas First Fridays” occur throughout the year on each first Friday of the month. Art exhibits featuring local artists, dining, and themed shopping events that provide fun for all are part of each First Friday line-up. In July, the theme is “Rock ‘n’ Roll Night” which includes a cruise-in with classic and specialty cars along the streets of downtown with Rock ‘n’ Roll music on the streets and in the downtown stores. The First Friday in August brings the “Camas Art and Music LIVE!” theme with fine art and local musicians throughout downtown. December’s event is “Hometown Holidays” with a community tree lighting ceremony, beautifully lit decorations along our main street (4th Ave.), caroling, Santa, and boutique shopping events.
Lacamas Lake & Camas Lily Fields North of downtown Camas is Lacamas Lake that is popular with hiking, fishing and boating enthusiasts. The Lacamas Lake area is noted for the unique and beautiful wild Camas lilies, which grow profusely in this area. The dark blue flower of the Camas lily attracts scores of visitors during its annual blooming season in mid-April. Hiking trails in Lacamas Lake Park cover 312 acres, providing a ringside view of the natural habitat with its wide variety of wildlife.
The Camas Trail System The Camas City parks and trails are open year round for day use only, dawn until dusk. Trails are an important recreation asset to Camas. Many people participate in trail-related activities including hiking, nature walks, in-line skating, and off-road Bicycling. The trails in Camas provide a good start for outdoor walking and bicycling experiences. Lacamas Heritage Trail along Lacamas Lake is a long continuous nature corridor that receives considerable use. Paved and unpaved trails in Lacamas Park and Lacamas Creek Park provide a good outdoor experience that is easily accessible to the public. For more information contact Camas Parks & Recreation at 360-834-5307.
Washougal is in east Clark County and is home to approximately 15,000 residents. Washougal has a brand new state-of-the-art downtown and is home to the Pendleton Woolen Mill and the areas only museum.
Downtown Washougal @ Reflection Plaza Reflection Plaza is located at the center of Washougal’s downtown revitalization. It was completed in the summer of 2007, resulting in a refreshing design that compliments the trendy new downtown core. Already the stage for community activities, the continuance of surrounding buildings to develop and fill with tenants will fill the plaza with visitors year round. Reflection Plaza is located at 17th and B Street.
Major Events in Washougal The City of Washougal hosts a variety of events each year. The Port of Camas/Washougal hosts the Riverside Concert Series. The City of Washougal hosts the Fourth of July Celebration and will be from 4-9:30 pm at William Clark Park. The American Motorcycling Association – Motocross Championship will make a stop at the Washougal MX Park in late July. Washougal’s International Film Festival will take place again in August. . In October Washougal normally hosts a Pumpkin Party in Reflection Plaza. Their Holiday Celebration takes place on the first Saturday of December.
The Pendleton Woolen Mills Pendleton Woolen Mills has a factory in Washougal that weaves wool for Pendleton clothing. Pendleton has operated the mill since 1911 at this location. Tours of the plant are available. Pendleton also operates a factory outlet store at the site. The store is open Monday through Saturday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pendleton Woolen Mills is located off State Highway 14 at the 15th Street exit in Washougal.
The Two Rivers Heritage Museum This museum features over 6000 photographs and 200 oral histories, including pioneering families of East Clark County. There are extensive land records and local family histories including D.L.C. and homesteading information, area maps, genealogy, and old home histories. There are Native American artifacts and antique baskets, art, antiques and memorabilia, plus so much more.
Steamboat Landing Steamboat Landing at the intersection of SR 14 and 15th Streett, provides pedestrian access to several points of interest. Visitors can stroll a boardwalk floating on the Columbia River that leads to an elevated observation deck with vast views of the River, Mt. Hood and Oregon. A peaceful wooded trail provides an alternate short cut to the deck. Visitors can also access the dike trail (used for walkers, bicycles and horses), which leads to Captain William Clark Park at Cotton Wood Beach, and views of the Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge.
The Sandy Swimming Hole The Sandy Swimming Hole, located in the 300 block of Shepherd Rd, has been a popular warm weather spot for both swimmers and kayakers for several years. The large sunny deck accommodates picnics with views of the Washougal River. Restrooms are available for visitor convenience. 300 Black of Shepherd Road.
Captain William Clark Park Captain William Clark Park at Cottonwood Beach is located on property owned by the Port of Camas/Washougal. Clark Park, once known simply as “Cottonwood Beach,” commemorates the historical site where the Corps of Discovery camped for six days while on their journey through this area in 1806. The 85-acre park includes walk paths, paved parking, picnic tables, covered cooking areas, a recognition plaza, three restroom buildings, and replicas of Chinookan canoes and Lewis and Clark’s dugout canoes. A two-mile long dike trail at the north side of the Park and just above the Beach offers a scenic stretch for hiking, jogging, biking, and horseback riding.
Marina Park Marina Park is located on the beautiful Columbia River, 5 miles east of Portland (river mile 121.7), the Port’s Marina Park provides a wonderful view of Mt. Hood and the Marina. There is also a walking path, public restrooms, picnic tables, shade trees, and a deck overlooking the Marina. The facilities include picnic tables, handicap-accessible restrooms, a walking path, BBQ pits, groomed grass, and scenic views. There is also an RV waste station nearby for your convenience.
Parker’s Landing Historical Park may very well be sitting atop the birthplace of Washougal. It all began in 1845 when the first permanent white settler, David C. Parker, staked his claim amidst Chinook-speaking Native Americans and later called it Parkersville. Five years later (1850-1856) 50 settlers claimed land under the Donation Land Claim Act and that same year the Indian War resulted in a mass relocation of Native Americans to the Warm Springs Reservation. Over the next 20 years, several merchants would arrive in Parkersville and purchase over 20 acres of neighboring land, which would later be called Washougal. You can still visit the oldest incorporated community, now known as The Port of Camas/Washougal and Parker’s Landing Historical Park. Launch your boat or go have a picnic under the harbor in the park. Enjoy the historical narratives in the kiosks or head off to a nearby trail.
Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge is located adjacent to Washougal, on 1,049 acres of former Columbia River floodplain, this diked area consists of shallow ponds, marshes, open fields, and riparian woodlands. While providing an important nesting and wintering area for raptors and waterfowl, it is also at a crossroads of migration routes. Birds that move east and west, through the nearly sea level break in the Cascade Mountains created by the Columbia Gorge, mingle with north/south migrant species. Over 200 species of birds have been recorded from this small area including such west-of-the-Cascades rarities as Prairie Falcon, Black-necked Stilt, American Avocet, Burrowing Owl, Loggerhead Shrike, and Sage Thrasher. Click on the link for park hours.
Reed Island State Park Take a short boat trip down the Columbia River to Reed Island, an all-access state park, located 1 mile east of Washougal. Accessible only by boat, Reed Island features picnicking, camping, fishing, hiking, swimming, boating, water skiing, and bird watching. The island also features 10 primitive campsites. Launch your boat at the Port of Camas/Washougal -and take the family for a picnic, join your buddies for some water sports, or grab your fishing pole and binoculars for a little quality time with nature.