Most of Bellingham has a see-but-don’t-touch relationship with the Bay. The water is visible from many locations throughout the city. But visible is different than accessible. For beach access, we have to go either south to the Chuckanuts or north to Birch Bay, with one notable exception—Locust Beach.
Locust Beach offers a waterside playground to anyone who can find parking. Seriously, parking might be the hardest part of your trip. On a sunny day, you might have to leave your car on Marine drive, and walk down Locust Ave. to the waterfront.
When you do reach the water, though, you can roam the beach for a mile in either direction—on sand at lowtide, on rocks at hightide. Keep one eye on the shore, though. On bank, you’ll notice cargo nets hung by some intrepid college students in some very climbable trees.
Locust is a great spot for skimboarding, fishing, kayaking, and rock-skipping. But the favorite local pastime is to wade out onto the sandbar as far as you can at lowtide.
You may be tempted to camp at Locust, but be cautious. There are 2 things that could ruin your trip. The rail line bordering the beach is active every night, and hightide will shrink the beach to a third of its normal size. But, for a day at the beach in Bellingham, Locust can’t be beat!