Boatin’ and Hikin’ on Sucia Island

Sucia Island
May 1, 2015
Many thanks to Laura of the blog “Riveted” for sharing some of her story and pictures of travel through the outer islands of the San Juan archipelago. Sucia and Stuart Islands are water access only parks! Are you an avid boater with some tales to tell about your marine state parks destinations? Tell us about it and share your stories at our Share Your Story Portal!

This morning we decided we’d seen enough of Stuart Island (even though we really hadn’t) and we headed for Sucia Island.

(It’s possible we were also thinking about trying to watch House of Cards, and we were getting very poor cellular and data service in Reid Harbor). We headed toward Fossil Bay on Sucia. It was so beautiful out (and really calm in Reid Harbor). It was a bit rougher outside the harbor, but still not bad (and not the 3-5 foot waves predicted…more like 2-3 foot).

We decided to moor in Shallow Bay at Sucia Island, since we hadn’t been there before. Here we are:

Shallow Bay at Sucia Island

We took the dinghy to shore and walked across to check out Echo Bay. We usually stay at Fossil Bay, and have never even seen Echo Bay before. It’s big, pretty, and looks like it’s ready to party in the summertime. There was only one (very large yacht-style) boat out there today though:
Large Yacht on Echo Bay

From there, we took a nice 4 mile hike out to Ewing Cove and back. THIS HIKE!! I took way too many photos to show you how pretty it was, so I’ll just stop talking and show you:
Ewing Cove 1
Ewing Cove 2
The trail! It’s just like this…the whole way. Love it.
Ewing Cove trail
Ewing Cove cliff
The trail ends at Ewing Cove where there’s a nice rocky beach with tons of driftwood, and a marsh of nearby frogs singing some very loud frog songs.
Ewing Cove rocky beach
When we returned to Shallow Bay, the wind had picked up a bit, but unlike predicted, it was out of the west and straight into the bay. It wasn’t terrible, but we decided to stick with the original plan and head over to Fossil Bay for the night.

Mt. Baker looks nice as we are about to round the corner into Fossil Bay:

Mt. Baker on the water
Here’s our hike (and a good overview of what Sucia Island looks like if you’re unfamiliar with it). Shallow bay is there on the west side, Echo Bay just across that bit of land to the east, and Fossil Bay is down at the bottom of the map. (If you click to enlarge the image, you’ll see that clearly this satellite image was taken in the summer, when every single mooring buoy is occupied by a boat. As this moment, there is one boat in Echo Bay and two other boats here in Fossil Bay. On a clear, sunny, and even warmish Saturday…on the last day of February).
Hike path


Laura and her family see lots of great state park destinations in their travels around the San Juan Islands.
Read more of this and other great travel stories at their blog, “Riveted.”

Are you an avid boater? Do you have your own tales of sails or canoe or even kayak trips at your Washington State Parks?
Tell us about them at our Share Your Story Portal!