Ruby Beach Hike
Washington has no shortage of incredible beaches, and the endless coastline is always a treat to explore. Ruby Beach is an example of the scenery that makes the Pacific Northwest what it is: dramatic sea, rocky beaches strewn with driftwood, peculiar rock formations jutting out of the water. This beach walk is a go-to for locals and is often frequented by visitors as well. It’s only 1.6km in length and involves almost no elevation gain, making it a nice pick for adventurers of all levels.
Ruby Beach tends to be somewhat busy, so try visiting in the mornings or midweek if possible. Additionally, plan to arrive as the tide goes out so you’re not trapped by high tide at the creek crossing.
The trailhead for Ruby Beach is off the Ruby Beach parking loop.
|When to do|
Out and back
Ruby Beach Hike
Ruby Beach Trail Description
Could you ever choose a favorite beach in Washington? Ruby Beach is up there for many locals and visitors alike. There are few coastlines with better views than this one, and you can walk for as long as you like. The beach is also popular with runners, picnickers, and families.
Note that there is a creek you’ll need to cross to complete the entire trail, and this becomes impassable in high tide. We recommend checking out the tide charts on the day you plan to visit and aiming to arrive as the tide is going out. This gives you the most time to enjoy all areas of the beach before high tide may make certain parts more difficult to access.
Ruby Beach is a very popular destination, so if you prefer some solitude, try visiting in the middle of the week, early in the morning, or later in the evening. The beach is rocky, so good footwear can be helpful.
Begin from the trailhead. The path travels north along the shoreline. Note that the creek you’ll cross is early on in the hike, so planning to arrive back here before the high tide is recommended.
Wander up the shore, admiring towering sea stacks, driftwood piles, and the lapping waves. Take a look at the stones and rocks, which are polished and multicoloured.
There is an excellent lagoon on the beach for stone skipping. Kids will love the tide pools, which often have small crabs scuttling around. If you go further down the beach, you can usually break away from the crowds a bit.
When you’re ready, stroll back down the beach and return to where you parked.
The great Pacific is the feature of this hike. The wild, untamed-feeling shores of Washington are some of the best places to enjoy the ocean and the west coast ecosystem that thrives around it. Gaze out to sea and enjoy feeling more connected with nature here.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Ruby Beach known for?
Ruby Beach is known for the reddish sand that occasionally gathers on the shore and the large rock islands known as sea stacks. It’s one of the most well-known beaches in the state.
Should I go to Rialto Beach or Ruby Beach?
Ruby Beach is a much easier hike than Rialto Beach, so choose according to your desired difficulty level. Both are worth visiting.
Can you swim at Ruby Beach?
You don’t go to Ruby Beach to swim. Being a PNW beach, expect cool, misty weather and very cold waters. Come to hike, enjoy the tide pools, and watch for whales swimming by.
Prepare for a misty, potentially rainy day. This is the PNW, after all!
Try this to prepare for the hike up Rialto Beach.
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