Category Archives: San Juan Islands

Lime Kiln State Park

Lime Kiln State Park is a must-see stop for every whale enthusiast visiting San Juan Island. It is also known as the “whale-watching park” and is one of the best places in the world to watch for orca whales from shore. Due to the steep underwater topography, salmon and other prey fish are driven right up against the shore, and hungry orcas will sometimes approach to within 10 feet of… Read More »

Farmer’s Markets

Summer in the San Juan Islands is a time when the locals celebrate the rich bounty this region has to offer. Provisioning for your charter gives you a chance to indulge in flavorful, locally grown produce and other foods, and to immerse yourself in the rural culture of the islands. Each island has its own unique market where you can purchase locally grown foods and unique gifts. If you depart… Read More »

Forts Casey, Flagler, and Worden

During the late 19th century, military officials were concerned that hostile fleets may gain access to the Puget Sound, which housed the Bremerton Naval Yard and large cities such including Seattle, Tacoma, and Everett. It was believed that the most likely entrance from the sea into the Puget Sound would be Admirality Inlet. In order to protect the vulnerable inlet, three forts were constructed: Fort Worden, near Port Townsend, Fort… Read More »

Deception Pass State Park

Deception Pass is probably the most scenic pass in all of the San Juans, and it draws thousands of tourists every year. Seeing it from the water, however, isn’t something that many people get the chance to do, but you certainly can during your charter! During ebb and flood tides, currents through the narrow strait can reach up to 8 knots and may result in whirlpools, standing waves, and roiling… Read More »

Anacortes

Visitors to the San Juan Islands may be familiar with Anacortes because it is the city from which all of the San Juan Island Ferries depart, but there is a lot to enjoy in and around the city that can be easily missed by the ferry passengers. Although you can easily drive to Anacortes from the mainland, it is actually located on an island in Skagit County called Fidalgo, and… Read More »

Transient Vs. Resident Orcas

One of the biggest draws for tourists to the San Juan Islands are the orca whales (Orcinus orca) that frequent local waters. Most people are familiar with the appearance of orcas: their tall, triangular dorsal fins, grey saddle patches, and white eye spots are obviously identifiable characteristics. These charismatic marine mammals are not only entertaining to watch, but there is much more to them than meets the eye. Did you… Read More »

View Unique Art at San Juan Island Sculpture Park

The Pacific Northwest is rich with art of all forms, and one of the best places to see some of the local talent is the San Juan Islands Sculpture Park. Located just outside of Roche Harbor along the San Juan Transit route, the sculpture park features over 20 acres of outdoor art and houses 130 sculptures. Many of the sculptures were made by famous artists from the United States and… Read More »

Bird Watching on San Juan Island

Did you know that San Juan Island is one of the best bird watching areas in all of Washington State? Due to the large volume of water flushing through the Strait of Georgia and Haro Strait with each tidal change, the Salish Sea is an incredibly rich environment and is home to over 200 species of both resident and migrating birds. During the summer, rhinoceros auklets, tufted puffins, and pigeon… Read More »

Spencer Spit State Park

Spencer Spit, located on Lopez Island, is a 138-acre marine and camping park, and is a popular stopping point for charter guests. It is named for the lagoon-enclosing sand spit that characterizes the park. Historically, the area was used by Native Americans as a productive spot for crabbing, clamming, and fishing. The spit was homesteaded in the 1800’s by the Troxell family, and was eventually sold to the Spencers, who… Read More »

Harbor Porpoises

Harbor porpoises, one of the smallest members of Cetacea, have been a rare sight in the Salish Sea until recently. They were common in our inland waters through the 1950’s, but had virtually disappeared by the early 1970’s due to fishing activities, increased vessel noise, and industrial pollution. Why they have made a comeback recently is unknown, but several factors, including declines in local gill-net fisheries as well as ongoing… Read More »