Spend the Day in Awe: Northwest Trek Wildlife Park

Hop aboard a tram and take a narrated tour through forests and meadows teeming with American bison, Roosevelt elk, moose, bighorn sheep, deer and other animals. Stroll along forested and paved pathways past natural exhibits that are home to two growing grizzly bear cubs, two American black bears, a cougar, Canada lynx, bobcats, wolves and foxes. Marvel at the antics of beavers, river otters and other wetlands animals as they splash and explore a wetlands area.

Northwest Trek Wildlife Park near Eatonville is a place to see native Northwest animals and enjoy nature. And all of these experiences are open to every guest with paid admission or membership.

Plus, there’s Kids’ Trek, the half-acre, nature-inspired wonderland for kids, from toddlers through tweens. This playground includes a replica of a hollow tree with nets inside for climbing, a net staircase and three fabulous slides. A toddler zone comes complete with a sand play area and a meandering stream. A “construction zone” enables bigger kids to build forts and other imaginative structures. Kids’ Trek encourages kids to explore nature and learn more about the world around them as they play. Admission to the playground is included in each ticket to the wildlife park.

But Northwest Trek also offers a very wildside for humans who want a bit more adventure. For an extra charge, you can test your mental and physical agility on the Zip Wild complex of thrilling zip line/challenge courses. Or you can climb into a specially equipped Jeep for a premium off-road tour of the 435-acre free-roaming area. This will get you closer than you ever thought possible to bison, elk, mountain goats, moose, bighorn sheep and other animals. Reservations for the Zip Wild courses and Keeper Adventure Tours are available.

For more than four decades, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park has been a leader in the care and conservation of Northwest animals. The animals, adventure and natural setting make the park a must-visit day trip. It’s an easy drive from anywhere in the Puget Sound area. When you enter the tree-lined drive, you just want to say “ahhhh,” slow down a bit and enjoy a day in nature. KRIS SHERMAN

Northwest Trek Wildlife Park

11610 Trek Dr East, Eatonville