Local Adventures: Maxwelton Outdoor School

Maxwelton Outdoor School was the work of teachers and local folks on the south end of Whidbey Island, and it has developed into a lush green paradise only a few miles from the Clinton ferry dock, that takes people to Seattle.

The school is 21 years old now, and you can see the changes that have occurred over the years. The school is located on Maxwelton Road, outside of Langley, Washington. While I got to attend as a field trip parent volunteer, the public can use the trails (be respectful and tread lightly of course!). Dogs are not allowed.

Humans helping the salmon to return to the creek is the theme, bringing a healthy forest with it.

While small in size, it doesn’t feel that way when you are enjoying it.

I’ve come to have an appreciation for the massive maple trees, with high canopies.

Native Evergreen Huckleberries in bloom.

Dicentra in bloom, tucked in the understory.

Sun lit paths. It was a hot day (OK, to non-islanders, it was cool I am sure, but it was in the gasp…low 70’s), and the woods were nice to be in.

While not open to the public, the indoor school part is a neat structure, and hosts classes. For a quiet project we did leaf rubbings.


Oyster Mushrooms on downed logs.

Yellowing Oyster Mushrooms.

Swaths of Vanilla Leaf.

An old snag, on the bank of the creek.

Maxwelton Creek, which is a salmon creek, that feeds out to the Salish Sea not far away.

It’s a wonderful place to visit with children, and the trails are walkable by most people (mostly flat), and there is a parking lot as well as on street parking (it’s not a busy road).