Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Indian Island, Jefferson County

Google Earth Map showing Indian Island and Marrowstone Island

I had some field work yesterday that included a slope across from Indian Island in Jefferson County. Indian Island wasn't always an island. It was formerly connected to the mainland via a sand and gravel bar. Charles Wilkes called the area Craven Peninsula when he mapped Puget Sound in 1841. A canal was carved through the spit in 1913 to shorten the distance between Oak Bay on the south and Port Townsend to the north. A ferry was operated to get from the mainland to the the island until a high bridge was constructed in 1951. A county road still angles down the slope to the old ferry landing.
Old ferry landing for Indian Island

Bridge to Indian Island.

The Island is almost entirely owned by the U.S. Navy as a weapons depot with loading facilities at the north end of the island. The entrance to the depot is located just past the bridge. The entrance area was a scene of protects during the Iraq War with as many as 37 arrests for trespass and blocking the depot entrance.

Entrance to weapons depot

The road (a state highway) continues past razor wire topped fences along the south end of the island to Marrowstone Island. The entire south end of the island is lined with county park land with great shore access including beaches and back water tidal estuaries. A number very healthy garry oaks are located between the road and Oak Bay. A rare tree and rarer still to see such large oaks in western Washington. A few are the biggest I have seen with the exception of a some in a park in Oak Harbor.

Oak Trees along the south shore of Indian Island

The road continues across a culvert and onto Marrowstone Island.

Tidal area between Marrowstone Island on the right and straight ahead and Indian Island on the left

1 comment:

Bonnie Story said...

Indian Island has some splendid hiking opportunities, clean beaches and lots of fresh air. Here's a post I did on my blog about a favorite place there:

I really enjoy your blog! Thanks, Bonnie