Does your perfect day off involve trees, lawn, sun spots, shade and a clear, turquoise river? Pack your fishing pole, swimsuit and picnic basket, round up your family and friends - or take some much-needed solitude – and head to Schafer State Park.
Schafer offers supreme fishing on the Satsop River, for steelhead, cutthroat trout and salmon. The river also offers calm, shallow wading spots and joyous inner-tube floats.
Spread out that picnic at an outdoor table, or under a tree on the wide lawn. Meander down the 2-mile trail; then take a moment to explore the park’s origins, dating back to 1872. Schafer is a state and national historic site designated by the Washington Heritage Register and National Register of Historic Places. Interpretive exhibits highlight the history of the original homesteaders and area’s logging industry.
Needing more rest and replenishment? Why not make it a multi-day stay? Set up camp in your tent or RV, and wake up early for a morning float or some prime-time angling.
Schafer State Park is a 119-acre camping park on the Satsop River, midway between Olympia and the Pacific Ocean. The park’s impressive buildings are constructed of native stone.
Discover Pass: A Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to state parks for day use. For more information about the Discover Pass and exemptions, please visit the Discover Pass web page.
Two covered picnic shelters in the day-use area are reservable. Reservations can be made online or by calling (888) CAMPOUT or (888) 226-7688.
2 miles of hiking trails
Other activities & deatures
Fire circles (60)
Horseshoe pits (4)
Sheltered fire circles (2)
A series of outdoor exhibits detail the park's natural and cultural history. One exhibit features photos and descriptions of the pioneer settlement by the Schafers, as well as photos of the many company picnics held in the park. The “Life of the River” exhibit explains flooding, geology, fish habitat, and other features at the park.
The Friends of Schafer and Lake Sylvia State Parks host a traditional salmon bake in October and an annual yule log event in December. The park also offers summer lectures, musical performances, and other events every year.
The park has 41 campsites, nine sites have water and electric, twenty seven are standard sites, one primitive site, four walk-in sites, site U1 is ADA only, one dump station, and one restroom with showers. The maximum site length is 40 feet (may have limited availability). Campsites 6-16, 24, 31, 32, the primitive campsite, and the four walk-in sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Utility campsites U-1 through U-9 and standard sites 1-5, 17-23, and 25-30 are available by reservation.
The park provides one group camp that has a campfire ring, vault toilets and picnic tables.
Reservations & fees
Reservations can be made online or by calling 8(88) CAMPOUT or (888) 226-7688. For fee information, check out our camping rates page.
Services & supplies
The park store sells ice, soda, camping essentials, candy, ice cream and other items.
Schafer State Park is a colorful haven created in memory of John and Anna Schafer, who had settled in the area in 1872. Their sons, Peter, Hubert, and Albert, formed the Schafer Bros. Logging Company, which, at its height, was one of the largest lumber and logging companies in the Pacific Northwest. In 1924, Schafer Bros. Logging Company donated the park to the State of Washington. It was the first such donation by a company from the lumber industry. Prior to 1924 the site was the scene of many Schafer family picnics.
From the 1920s to the 1940s, Schafer Bros. Company employees held their annual picnic in the park, with as many as 6,000 people in attendance. Several other local associations also held annual events at the park, including the Farm Bureau, the Scandinavian Central Committee, and Vasa Lodge.
The Satsop River, which runs through the park, has been a popular fishing site for Native Americans for centuries. The river continues to be a productive and popular site for fishing. Since 1909, salmon have been harvested from this location for nearby salmon hatcheries.
In 2010, the park was designated a state and national historic site of statewide significance by its addition to the Washington Heritage Register and National Register of Historic Places.