Located near Mossyrock, Washington, is this large state park with a silly name. It’s not really silly, as it was renamed from Mayfield Lake State Park to Ike Kinswa in honor of a local indian chief. This place is out of the way from anything. You’ll really have to make a conscious decision to visit this park. It’s not hard to find, but I know if it wasn’t part of our project, we would have never taken the time to get here. Anyways, enough of the simpleton banter! What did we find? The first thing we found was the sunshine, since that was everywhere when we visited. That’s not helpful to you is it?
This place has the largest picnic zone we have seen yet. It can definitely accommodate a throbbing crowd of people. Thankfully we were there in early spring so there was all of about 10 other people in the whole park. Ample grassland for both the frisbee throwing people and the football group at the same time. As with many of the state parks we have visited, this place probably gets pretty packed in the height of summer. Also I would recommend this park in fall time as there are absolutely tons of deciduous trees.
It’s a unique park as it is situated at the river entrance to the lake. It is annoying that the trail following upstream isn’t close enough to the river to keep a view of it while you’re walking. On the plus side, if you take a spur trail you’ll be secluded from others and you could have a hot steamy make out session with your partner. Although you would have to worry about the boaters on the river, so you may need to put on your exhibitionist side to do this.
The scenery here is wonderful, but like I mentioned it needs to be summer or fall to get the full explosion of impressiveness. It was just alittle to brown and barren without the leaves when we were there. Maybe that is your thing though… brown and boring. HEY! I don’t judge! The river is a beauty though, and kept us engaged during our visit. Also it should be noted that this is a calm river, not a raging rapid of death type of place. Think soul soothing instead of heart attack, that would keep your mental pictures correct.
Before we left we took a quick drive into the camping zone. It appears to be well maintained and has great privacy in the individual campsites. They aren’t open and sitting right on top of each other. There is also a trail along the lake from here. The real surprise though, came in the way of wildlife; we met a deer on the road, and clearly he was used to humans as he just stopped and stared at us like we were the weirdos. The other thought that passed my mind was that he was likely playing scout for some vicious birds. Thankfully the birds didn’t get the message as our car was not pooped on.
Conclusion: 4 out of 5. However, if you have kids, this place will easily be 5 as it is just super kid friendly. The roped off swimming area and playground would be a happy wonderland to any child. You’d likely be making a lasting memory for them here. And for boaters this place is probably at the top of their list.