Bainbridge Island, WA 98110
An easy route with a challenging finish, the main trail through Gazzam Lake Nature Preserve meanders through second-growth forest on Bainbridge Island, plunging down its finish at a small, scenic section of rocky beach.
Formerly an old road bed, the trail begins as a flat path through mossy forests of redcedar, salal, and one or two small tallgrass fields. These meadows are being reclaimed from the invasive scotch broom plant, thanks to local community efforts.
A third of a mile down the old road, it forks, and you can continue on the old road, or take the righthand branch and enjoy a slightly longer route. Both trails meet up at a junction, for a lollipop loop option, take one on the way to the beach, and one on the way back.
Either way, the greenery of the forest surrounds you. Listen for birdcalls and look for other trail users – equestrians use this trail occasionally, though the route down to the beach is hiker-only.
Arrive at a junction. To your right is Gazzam Lake, where waterfowl and other birds make their home. Listen for their calls as you turn left if you came from the main road (straight ahead if you came from the other trail). Keep the lake on your right, and don’t fret – you’ll get to take a closer look soon.