Living in the Seattle area means having access to nature, even by bus. There are blueberry farms you can ride to, hiking trails, and recently I discovered a campground with a bus stop at the entrance.
King County’s Tolt MacDonald Park is unlike any campground I’ve experienced. It’s very close to the Seattle area, and just outside the city limits of Carnation. From the campsite it’s a 13 minute walk to the grocery store, complete with Starbucks. I wouldn’t be surprised if pizza delivery was available.
Many of the camp sites aren’t surrounded by trees, with the benefit of having grass-covered camp sites (dirt-free camping!) and the drawback of losing some privacy, though some sites are surrounded by shoulder-high plants and others can be made private with strategic tent placement. There’s a huge grass area perfect for kite flying or a game of Frisbee, and a wooden suspension bridge over the Snoqualmie river to more camp sites. On the far side of this pedestrian-only bridge you’ll find more tent camp sites, yurts, old log cabin style shelters, and a shipping container that’s been converted into a cabin. The river has a rocky beach and a few places for fishing. There are also hiking trails, and although I came across many mountain bikes, it was still nice for hiking.
The 224 leaves Redmond Transit Center at Bay 5, and arrives at NE 40th St. at the south end of Carnation. Walk 0.4 miles West to the camp entrance. There aren’t any weekend buses to Tolt MacDonald, but there are six weekday buses in each direction. A well-organized camper could leave after work on a Friday, and only miss a little work Monday morning. Google tells me the trip from downtown Seattle takes around 1.5 hours.