Calling all hiking enthusiasts and nature lovers! Have you added Chehalis River Discovery Trail in Centralia to your must-visit list yet? This hidden gem in Lewis County offers stunning scenery that will inspire you. With miles of scenic trails to walk, this trail is the perfect pet-friendly destination for families looking for a breathtaking walk or a thrilling hike. Take advantage of this unforgettable journey — pack a picnic and head to Chehalis River Discovery Trail in Centralia for an adventure you’ll surely want to add to your hiking rotation. 

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Discover a Scenic Walk in North Centralia

Chehalis River Discovery Trail is a hidden gem nestled amidst the scenic farmlands of north Centralia and the winding banks of the Chehalis River. This 3.5-mile trail is relatively flat and offers breathtaking views. The path is a mix of gravel and concrete, which leads to a grassy trail that continues for the entirety of the walk. It’s an excellent option for those seeking a low-impact, easy jogging trail on the knees.

Chehalis River Discovery Trail
Get outside with your workout and jog or run at Centralia at Chehalis River Discovery Trail. Photo credit: Natosha Burnett

As you embark on the trail, you’ll find several dog poo bag stations thoughtfully placed along the way, each equipped with trashcans for easy disposal. The path to the trail is a short walk towards the end of the road. You will notice a cyclone fence blocking your path. The entrance to the access road is to the right of the cyclone gate. The surrounding fields are active farmlands, so stay on the road and yield to any machinery crossing your path. Make your way toward the picturesque red barn to stop for a sip of water and a history lesson on volunteer efforts to construct and maintain the trail. 

At 0.3 miles in, proceed toward the picturesque red barn. Once you reach the barn, you will find educational signs that will help you and your kids learn more about the surrounding agriculture fields and local wildlife. These signs provide detailed information about the area’s plants, animals, and other exciting features.

Just pass the red barn, and you can go left or right. Follow the trail signs to your right and head north for approximately 1.2 miles and have your breath taken away by the calming sounds of the Chehalis River and the tall canopy of trees created by the largest cottonwood forest remaining along the Chehalis River, and the sound of the rushing water (Keep pets and small children away from the banks’ edge, as it can be unstable). 

Chehalis River Discovery Trail
Enjoy the views in Centralia while hiking the Chehalis River Discovery Trail. Photo credit: Natosha Burnett

Take a Longer Hike Through a Lush Grove of Trees on Discovery Trail

If you want to walk longer, take a left and follow the tree line. Follow the signs into a lush grove of cedar and fir trees. Follow the dirt path until you reach the beautiful bank of the Chehalis River. It’s a peaceful spot to relax and enjoy the view. If you take this route on a hot morning or afternoon, ensure you have sunscreen and water, as you’ll be in the sun most of the way.

Chehalis River Discovery Trail
Beyond a chance to enjoy Lewis County’s great outdoors, find educational opportunities at Chehalis River Discovery Trail. Photo credit: Natosha Burnett

Volunteer Efforts and the Construction of Chehalis River Discovery Trail

Chehalis River Discovery Trail was made accessible to the public in 2006 thanks to volunteers from the City of Centralia, Lewis County Stream Team, the Chehalis River Basin Land Trust, and students from Evaline, Boistfort, and Onalaska schools. Over the years, many volunteers have worked hard to remove and replace trees, transforming the Discover Trail into a comfortable and picturesque path perfect for enjoying the sparkling river.

Chehalis River Discovery Trail
It’s an easy hike in Centralia at Chehalis River Discovery Trail. Photo credit: Natosha Burnett

How to Get to Chehalis River Discovery Trail

Chehalis River Discovery Trail is located at 1545 Goodrich Road in Centralia and is open from dawn until dusk. Free but limited trailhead parking is available near the end of Goodrich Road at the red compost station. Please ensure that you only park in the designated gravel parking spots next to the bathrooms and do not park in any employee parking spots at the compost plant.

Chehalis River Discovery Trail in Centralia is a hidden gem that offers stunning scenery, educational opportunities, and a memorable adventure for hikers of all ages and skill levels. As you embark on your journey, you’ll notice several small trash cans along the trail. While they serve as a convenient way to dispose of your waste, it is crucial to pack out all of your trash to help keep the natural surroundings clean and beautiful. Furthermore, it’s essential to remember that no potable water is available along the way, so be sure to bring enough of your own to stay hydrated throughout your adventure.

This trail is surrounded by private property, so please stay on the designated path and avoid trespassing. Also, keep noise levels to a minimum and be courteous to those you encounter. This will help ensure everyone can enjoy this hidden gem to the fullest.

Don’t miss out on this unforgettable journey, so pack a picnic and head to Chehalis River Discovery Trail in Centralia today!

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