Capitol Lake


Capitol Lake trails may be used from 7 a.m. to dusk.

The lake is closed to all public use (e.g., swimming, boating, fishing, wading, etc.) due to New Zealand mudsnails.

Parking is available at 501 5th Avenue SW, Olympia.

Seasonal information: Stickleback life cycle

Each June and July, small stickleback fish return to Capitol Lake and die shortly after successfully spawning.

This natural phenomenon is not related to lake oxygen levels or contamination issues.

Other parks and attractions

Capitol Lake - Deschutes Estuary Restoration Project

After years of scientific study on the best long-term management for Capitol Lake, DES is undertaking a monumental effort called the Deschutes Estuary Restoration Project to remove the 5th Avenue Dam and tide gate to restore 260 acres of estuarine and salt marsh habitat at the mouth of the Deschutes River.

The Capitol Lake - Deschutes Estuary Restoration Project is supported with funding from Washington’s Climate Commitment Act. The CCA supports Washington’s climate action efforts by putting cap-and-invest dollars to work reducing climate pollution, creating jobs, and improving public health. Information about the CCA is available at

Learn more and subscribe to project updates at

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Deschutes Estuary Restoration Project