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Maury Island Natural Area

About the park

Located on the southeast shore of Maury Island on lands formerly operated as a sand and gravel mine, the Maury Island Natural Area is now a 275-acre park. The park contains madrone forests and habitat that supports endangered species such as Chinook salmon, orca, and bull trout.

The site’s nearly one mile of shoreline is the longest undeveloped stretch of Puget Sound shoreline in King County. When combined with the nearby 320-acre Maury Island Marine Park, the two parks represent the largest public holding of protected marine shoreline in all of Puget Sound.

A beach with bluffs in the background and seagulls flying in a clear sky


The park can be reached from Seattle by the Fauntleroy-Vashon ferry and from Tacoma by the Point Defiance-Tahlequah ferry. Once on Maury Island, head south on Dockton Road SW, east on SW 260th St. 


There is a 21-vehicle gravel parking lot, with four equestrian trailer sites, located off SW 260th St.

Park history

Local activists and environmental groups fought plans for mine expansion and advocated for public acquisition of the site, which was purchased in December 2010. Acquisition funding came from the King County Conservation Futures Tax, Washington State Department of Ecology ASARCO Settlement fund, and an amendment to CalPortland’s existing royalty agreement for another mining site. In addition, community groups including Forterra, People For Puget Sound, Preserve Our Islands, Vashon-Maury Island Land Trust, and Washington Environmental Council began a fundraising campaign to help ensure the site would be protected and cared for in perpetuity.

Due to previous mining activity and the site's location within the historic Tacoma Smelter plume, plans for land reclamation and soil remediation have been an integral part of site management planning. In 2013, King County entered into an Agreed Order with Department of Ecology to develop an action plan to clean up contaminated soil on the site. This action plan was finalized in 2019, and King County has been implementing the contaminated soil cleanup in phases since then. Please refer to the Phased Cleanup Plan Map for details.

Future soil cleanup phases

As of November 2022, Phases 1 and 2 of the contaminated soil cleanup have been completed, including capping the trails, capping the former skeet range to create a parking area, and restoring six acres with native vegetation. To complete the cleanup, approximately ten more acres will be restored with native vegetation in phases every three years until complete (estimated to be complete in 2030). The next phase is tentatively scheduled for Q4 2024.

To formalize implementation of this cleanup, in February and March 2024, King County and Department of Ecology will be amending the 2013 Agreed Order for contaminated soil cleanup to include the schedule for implementation of the cleanup. As part of this amendment process, Department of Ecology will be sending out a Public Notice soliciting public comment. However, since multiple phases of the cleanup have already been voluntarily completed by King County, this agreed order amendment process is primarily a formality to ensure the cleanup meets the requirements in the state’s Model Toxic Controls Act.

Site management plan

The Friends of Maury Island Marine Park (FOMP) have offered to serve in a planning advisory role to assist King County’s efforts to finalize the Site Management Plan for the Maury Island Natural Area. This management plan covers all future use of the natural area, not just the plans for cleanup. A draft was prepared in 2013 but could not be finalized until the details of the cleanup were decided.  Now that the details for the cleanup are known, Parks staff will work with FOMP to finalize the management plan.