Alert for dog walkers, equestrians, runners, hikers, mountain bikers, and other regular users of Island Center Forest: from Oct. 16 to 31, the 200 acres of public land will be the site of an annual limited deer-hunting season when no other access to the forestland will be permitted.
The brief Island Center Forest hunting season, during the second half of October, coincides with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) designated modern firearm hunting season, when all firearms can be used, except rifles. This limited hunt replaces what was the state’s established five-month-long hunting season in Island Center Forest.
Formerly owned and managed by Washington Department of Natural Resources, Island Center Forest is the only public land on Vashon Island where deer hunting has been allowed. The state transferred ownership of the forest to King County in 2004, and an agreement to continue a limited annual deer-hunting season was a part of the ownership transfer.
Vashon Island’s largest public open space, Island Center Forest and Natural Area has nine miles of trails that are shared by hikers, mountain bikers, runners and equestrians. King County Parks manages the land in collaboration with community partners who make up the Friends of Island Center Forest, a diverse group that includes the Vashon Forest Stewards, Vashon-Maury Island Horse Association, Vashon Sportsmen’s Club, Vashon-Maury Island Land Trust, Vashon-Maury Island Audubon, outdoor enthusiasts and other community members.
More information about the Island Center Forest deer hunt is available by contacting David Kimmett, firstname.lastname@example.org.