Yelm Map

View Larger Map

About Yelm, Washington

Welcome to City of Yelm, Washington located in beautiful Thurston County and often referred to as the Pride of the Prairie.  Yelm has is surrounded by natural beauty and has spectacular views of Mount Rainier and the Cascade Mountain Range.   Yelm received it’s name from the Coast  Salish Native Indian Language meaning (Shelm) “land of dancing spirits” because of the appearance of shimmering heat rising from the prairie ground.  Yelm has a very strong close community and provides year around activities for young and old. Yelm has seen a significant population growth in the past few years and now has a population of approximately 7,000.  Yelm is considered a bedroom community  where many military families have chosen to live.   The median  household income is approximately $56,500.  The median house/condo is approximately $150,500. Joint Base Lewis-McChord is about 19.44 miles (30 minute commute) from Yelm. 

The Yelm Community Schools is the fourth largest district in Thurston Country with over 650 staff with over 5,400 students.   It covers 192 miles and services the communities of Yelm, Roy, McKenna, Lawrence Lake, Clear Lake (Bald Hills), the Nisqually Indian Reservation, and parts of Lacey.  This district has six elementary schools, two junior high schools, two high schools and one alternative school.  The District’s headquarters are located at 107 First Street North, P. O. Box 476, Yelm, WA  98597.  Phone:  360 458-1900.

The Yelm City Park is about one block long and is located at the corner of SR-507 and Mossman Avenue.  The park hosts a playground area, skateboard park, covered facilities, picnic tables, and a kitchen. This is an active park year round with events such as Family Fun Day, car shows, Christmas in the Park, Prairie Days, Easter Egg Hunt and much more.  Cochrane Park is an eight acre wetland park that includes a  catch and release fish pond.

Yelm has a number of great attractions and get-aways for couples as well as families.  The Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge is an amazing fish and wildlife refuge.  This refuge offers plenty of wildlife to see including whales and birds.  There are extensive boardwalk trails, fishing piers and boat launches.  There is even a great program that is free to youngsters 4 to 11 so that they can become a Junior Refuge Manager.   Wolf Haven is a spectacular habitat area for wolves.  Wolf Haven rescues and provides a home for wolves that have been displaced.  This is a great opportunity to see these beautiful animals safely in a natural setting.  The Point Defiance Zoo and Aquariam is located in Tacoma and is a 45 minute drive.  This zoo is committed ensuring that health of the animal as well as providing a fun, safe and educational experience to one and all who visit them.  They offer year round activities and experiences.  Yelm is considered one of the gateways to Mount Rainier National Park, a rainforest and offers breath taking views of glaciers and meadows.  For those who are adventurous, one can climb to the summit or one can simply sit at the rustic historic building enjoying the peace and quiet of the surrounding area.

Make sure to preview Homes for Sale in Yelm & the surround communities! What a nice place to call Home!

Welcome to Yelm, Washington


46°56′29″N 122°36′23″W
Approximately 15 miles SSW of JBLM


Approximately 6848 (2010 Census)

Housing costs

Apartment rental cost (median): No data
Home rental cost (median): No data
Home purchase price (median): No data

Helpful Contact Information

Public Safety

Law Enforcement

Yelm Police Department
(360) 458-3188


Providence St. Peter Hospital
(360) 491-9480


Water Service

Electricity Service

Natural Gas Service

Waste and Recycling Service