Dungeness Spit is a 5.5-mile (8.9 km) long sand spit jutting out from the northern edge of the Olympic Peninsula in northeastern Clallam County, Washington, USA, into the Strait of Juan de Fuca. It is the longest natural sand spit in the United States. The body of water it encloses is called Dungeness Bay. The Dungeness Spit is entirely within the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge and home of the Dungeness Lighthouse. Its land area, according to the United States Census Bureau, is 1,271,454 square meters (0.4909 sq mi, or 314.18 acres). The lighthouse once was run by United States Coast Guard, but since an automatic light was installed, it has been run by the "New Dungeness Lighthouse Organization". The spit is open to the public year around.
It was first found by Europeans during the Spanish 1790 Quimper expedition. The name "Dungeness" comes from the Dungeness headland in England. The spit was named by explorer George Vancouver in 1792, who wrote: "The low sandy point of land, which from its great resemblance to Dungeness in the British Channel, I called New Dungeness."
In December 2001 a heavy winter storm forced water over the spit. The next morning the spit was broken in three places, and vehicles supplying the lighthouse were not able to traverse the spit for about a month.
- U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Dungeness Bay
- Phillips, James W. (1971). Washington State Place Names. University of Washington Press. ISBN 0-295-95158-3.
- Dungeness Spit: Block 2000, Census Tract 9816, Clallam County, Washington United States Census Bureau
- US Fish & Wildlife - Dungeness NWR
- New Dungeness Lighthouse