Creative photos and essays from the San Juan Islands

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Islet

Islet
Orcas MC trip 2010 053

This speck of land is, I believe, the smallest “treed” island in the county. There are smaller rocks aplenty that poke up their seaweed shaggy heads as the tide recedes, but this ideal islet isn’t prone to tidal influences. Sitting well above sea level, with a fantasy-like ambiance, this little tike is in Moran State Park adrift about half way up Mountain Lake.

In the summer of 1970 two friends and I from Astoria, Oregon arrived here with an aluminum canoe and a fiberglass kayak, launched on the lake and stopped for lunch on this 50 foot long member of the San Juan Island archipelago. You can’t imagine a more idyllic setting; warm afternoon sunshine, a calm fresh-water/evergreen mixer in the air, and cold lake water to chill our soda pop!

Surely someone on Orcas knows of a name for this little guy. An island so sweet deserves a name to elevate it above “just another rock” status. After a simple respite, we were anxious to resume our journey, never having sailed these shores. We set off, much like Lewis and Clark must have done hundreds of times, ready to see what lies beyond the horizon.

Said horizon was only a quarter of a mile away at the head of the lake where we stashed our boats amongst the drift logs in a tiny bay, and continued afoot with our camping gear towards Twin Lakes, two jewels hidden in the forest below Mount Constitution. Before sunset we washed the trail grime off with some high diving from the cliff on the north side of the bigger twin.(see smaller photo) After such a full day of adventure and exploring, I slept one of the richest, deepest sleeps I can remember…EVER!

Moran State Park, I believe the largest of the state parks at 5,250 acres, has five lakes, 30 miles of trails, and the highest peak in the county, Mt. Constitution, at 2,409 feet.

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