Lopez Sound - James Island - Lopez Island

Lopez Island, Washington

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James Island, located just east of Decatur Island, is a popular state marine park and a worthy destination for a paddle trip. It’s also part of the Cascadia Marine Trail. Lopez Island makes for a good jumping-off point for the island, either from Spencer Spit to the north or from the Hunter Bay dock on the south side of the island. The trip from Hunter Bay is probably the more interesting of the two routes, passing several small islands that are part of the national wildlife refuge system, and avoiding ferry and boat traffic in Thatcher Pass. Advanced paddlers also occasionally make the open and exposed crossing of Rosario Strait to James Island from Anacortes when currents and weather conditions are favorable. From Hunter Bay you’ll pass Crab, Fortress, and Skull Islands, all part of the national wildlife refuge system. While Lopez Bay is protected from currents, winds from the south can funnel across the south end of Lopez Island and create rough conditions here.
San Juan Islands: A Guide to Exploring the Great Outdoors

DESCRIPTION FROM:

San Juan Islands: A Guide to Exploring the Great Outdoors

by Dave Wortmand (Falcon Guides)

James Island, located just east of Decatur Island, is a popular state marine park and a worthy destination for a paddle trip. It’s also part of the Cascadia Marine Trail.

Lopez Island makes for a good jumping-off point for the island, either from Spencer Spit to the north or from the Hunter Bay dock on the south side of the island. The trip from Hunter Bay is probably the more interesting of the two routes, passing several small islands that are part of the national wildlife refuge system, and avoiding ferry and boat traffic in Thatcher Pass. Advanced paddlers also occasionally make the open and exposed crossing of Rosario Strait to James Island from Anacortes when currents and weather conditions are favorable.

From Hunter Bay you’ll pass Crab, Fortress, and Skull Islands, all part of the national wildlife refuge system. While Lopez Bay is protected from currents, winds from the south can funnel across the south end of Lopez Island and create rough conditions here.

© 2005 Dave Wortmand/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Sea Kayaking
Nearby City: Lopez Island
Distance: 12
Skill Level: Moderate to Difficult
Season: Best spring through fall
Driving Directions: Directions to Lopez Sound - James Island - Lopez Island

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Apr 2018