Dates Of Stay: September 1–3, 2015
Vasa Park, named for nearby Vasa Creek that runs into Lake Sammamish, is on the shore of Lake Sammamish in Bellevue. From the looks of it, it has been around for a long time, and it is owned and operated by the Swedish Club. My first thought on arrival was, “I bet all these ritzy lakeshore homeowners hate Vasa Park.” (Especially the homes that overlook the aging park and the motley crew of RVs inhabiting it.)
The office is the first building when you enter the park. When I arrived in the rain that was not readily apparent, so I opened my window and asked a young park worker where the office was. He advised me it was behind me and to back up. I replied, “I can’t back up.” He queried, “Oh, you don’t know how?” I curtly replied, “No, dear. I am towing a vehicle and may not back up because of that.” Whippersnapper!
The park takes up valuable lakefront acreage, and the views of the lake really cannot be beat. Views of the park, on the other hand, are dominated by the maroon/red color of the shelters, and buildings. Someone got a good deal on some paint.
There is an entry fee for day visitors. Many office parties and corporate events are held there. There is a hall and banquet space directly across the road, which I did not visit, but I hear it is often used for weddings and receptions.
The best sites for large motorhomes are 17 through 22, where there are full hookups with a maximum 30 amp power. Water and wimpier amperage are available across the way for tent and trailer campers, and some of those sites are directly adjacent to W. Lake Sammamish Parkway, which can be noisy. All sites get some road noise, especially during the weekday morning and early evening rush hours. The Seattle Police store official watercraft and rescue equipment across from sites 17 through 22, which lends a sense of security. I was in Site 18. On my last day the visitors At Site 17 left and gave me this awesome view:
If you are considering Vasa Park for a trailer rally, don’t. There is room for maybe 15 rigs, and it would probably be prohibitively expensive to rent the entire place. I’m not sure it would even be possible, as the park generates good revenue from the day visitors and group events.
Don’t be a night owl on the town if you stay at Vasa Park. The chain-link fence gates are locked promptly at 10 PM. Camp hosts live on site, but I would not want to get on their bad side.
That chain-link fence and narrow gate also present a bit of a challenge for longer rigs, especially those towing vehicles. West Lake Sammamish Boulevard consists of only two lanes, and at the entrance to the park there is a concrete median nearby. Use the large drive and turnaround space at the reception hall across the road for a straight shot in and out of the gate.
The park has a dock and a floating dock, a playground for the kiddos, and several meeting and gathering shelters, some with sinks. Picnic tables abound, like over-breeding bunnies. When I visited immediately before Labor Day, it was rainy and there was hint of fall in the air. There were few visitors. I cannot imagine the noise and crowds in the height of summer.
There is a small laundry room consisting of two washers and two dryers, which cost $1.75 each. The restrooms are serviceable but have only one shower, which is free of charge. There are individual garbage cans for site 17 through 22, and many more receptacles are sprinkled throughout the park. There also recycling bins available.
Tammy’s Tip: Request Site 17, which has full hookups (30 amp maximum power) and an unobstructed view of the lake.