There are over 170 islands in the San Juan Archipelago of Washington State, but only four of them are served by the Washington ferry system. Yellow Island is a popular attraction for birders, walkers, and nature lovers. It can be reached by boat or kayak.
In 1947, Lewis and Elizabeth Dodd bought the island, and were determined to live in the style of Thoreau, relying on self-sufficiency and cultivating their own garden and orchard. Their home still stands, and makes a pleasant addition to the landscape, since it is made almost entirely from driftwood.
Today, that home is the Nature Conservancy caretaker’s cottage. The Nature Conservancy bought the Island from the Dodd/Hall family in 1979, and for the last 17 years, Phil Green has been its sole occupant.
There are over 50 species of wildflowers on the island for walkers to enjoy. To keep the island beautiful, there is no camping or dogs allowed, and if you bring your lunch on the trip, you will need to consume it on your boat.
If you would like assistance in arranging such a boat excursion, please mention it to your Harrison House Suites concierge when making your plans. There are boats departing Friday Harbor and Roche Harbor, but accommodations must be made in advance.
Yellow Island is a fantastic half day trip for your stay on San Juan Island – be sure to bring your binoculars and cameras!