Walking Trails at Fisherman Bay Spit Preserve

Fisherman Bay Spit Preserve on Lopez Island
Fisherman Bay Spit Preserve

Fisherman Bay is a calm and protected inlet located near the northern end of Lopez Island. Boaters both love and dread the protected anchoring grounds, as the one-way entrance and exit is well-known for its narrow navigation lines. (Spanning just five feet in some sections at low tide, boaters are strongly encouraged to come and go when the water is at its peak.)

Located at the tip of the entrance is Fisherman Bay Spit Preserve, a 29-acre swatch of open meadows, woodlands, wetlands, and approximately one mile of shoreline. During the spring, the meadows fill with wildflowers. And on clear days, it offers stunning views of Orcas Island’s Turtleback Mountain. Waving to passing boaters can be a favorite pastime as well, though don’t be surprised if the captains are preoccupied with navigating the slim channel.

Roughly one might of trails wind through the preserve, which has just 20 feet of elevation gain — making this the ideal gentle walk for those of all abilities. Just keep in mind that the ecosystems here are very fragile, so you need to always stay on trail.

Looking for a bit more time exploring? Stop at Otis Perkins Day Park when you’re headed to or coming from the preserve. One of the longest beaches on the island, it’s a great place for picnicking and bird watching. 

More Fun Things to do on Lopez Island

Studio 45 Glass on Lopez Island

inside the glass blowing studio
Walking into Studio 45 Glass on Lopez Island is like falling down the rabbit hole with Alice. It’s a world of color, where possibilities are only the beginning and art feels like it is created from thin air.

Tidepooling in the San Juan Islands

Family Looking in Tidepool in the Pacific Northwest. Photo by Zargon Design.
The rocky shorelines that ring the San Juan Islands create a diverse habitat that’s rich with life.