Community Environment Government

Penrose Point State Park closed until mid-May

Posted on January 18th, 2023 By:

Penrose Point State Park has closed until at least May 15 for sewage system upgrades.

The campground, where most of the work is taking place, was shut down at the beginning of the year. Washington State Parks closed the rest of the 237-acre park, which fronts Mayo Cove and Carr Inlet, on Monday, said Assistant Area Manager Olyvia Buday.

The project also will prohibit a March and April shellfish season.

No toilets in Penrose

The state had to close the entire park because there are no restroom facilities. Holes and trenches create a safety hazard, Buday said.

“We are hoping we can open on May 15,” Buday said. “That’s the ideal timeline, provided everything goes perfectly smoothly exactly the way we want everything to go. That’s the hopeful plan.”

Picnic tables at Penrose Point State Park.

Penrose Point State Park boasts 2 miles of shoreline on Delano Cove and Carr Inlet.

Initial bidding on the project occurred in February 2021, with an estimated cost range of $365,000 to $410,000. The expected cost bumped to $620,000 to $690,000 during a rebid in October. CLS Septics of Ravensdale, King County, won the contract and began work Monday.

“We originally had this septic project planned for last year,” Buday said. “It kept getting set back with equipment ordering and parts. I was at a meeting last week and said when are we going to start this thing? They said next week.”

Kopachuck also to close

Signs posted at the park over the last week warned of the closure. The State Parks website reads: “Penrose Point State Park campground is CLOSED effective January 3, 2023, and the entire park will be CLOSED starting the night of January 15, 2023, until further notice.

Sunrise behind Mount Rainier and Carr Inlet from Penrose Point State Park.

Sunrise behind Mount Rainier and Carr Inlet from Penrose Point State Park.

Penrose is 21 miles from Gig Harbor, a 40-minute drive across the Purdy Bridge onto Key Peninsula.

Another nearby state park, Kopachuck, is expected to close early this year for a $7.6 million renovation. Parks officials had hoped to wrap up permitting by the end of the year and advertise for bids. The 280-acre site 6 miles west of downtown Gig Harbor is across Carr Inlet from Penrose.

“The Kopachuck project does not have an anticipated start date yet and likely won’t for a while,” said State Parks spokeswoman Sarah Dettmer. “We cannot move forward and send the project out to bid until we have final approval from Pierce County.”

“We are still working through Pierce County permitting,” added the Parks’ Brian Yearout. “Still several months out, unfortunately.”