Having grown up in the East Bay and Sacramento, California, living so very close to so much water is relatively new for me. I am still sometimes caught off guard when I wind down Blakely Avenue and almost drop into Eagle Harbor. Or when I am touring around, looking at houses and boom, I come to the edge of a cliff to find Manzanita Bay. You can’t get very far around here without running into the water, which, well, I must admit, is pretty great.
But, with the hustle and bustle of daily life, which includes family, work, sports, errands, we constantly have to remind ourselves to head out to the water, to make the time to enjoy it. My kids love going to Fay Bainbridge Park on the north end of the island. They love to collect sticks and rocks and dig for clams at low tide.I love to watch them run around while I gaze at Seattle and try and spy bald eagles.The setting is truly amazing.And when we are there, I wonder why we can’t get there more.
Lytle Beach is another beach well worth exploring. Being on the southern end of the island, it is usually more sunny and warmer than waterfront spots on the north end. Folks that live near by have great beach access and the beach has lots of interesting shells and rocks for inspection and collection. While there, you can enjoy the view of Rich Passage and watch the Bremerton Ferry wind its way to and fro. And, on a clear day, which we have had a string of lately, Mt. Rainier is ever-present.
The other night, taking advantage of the lengthening days, we headed out to Hawley Cove Park out at Wing Point, very near the ferry terminal.From the parking area you can walk (my kids like to run because it is downhill) on an easy, path down to the water.Once there, you can access the beach and have a front row seat when the ferry docks.It is kind of cool to be digging in the sand and look up and see the ferry right there, like it appeared out of nowhere.
My husband is great at getting the kids out and about and he and our youngest especially like to fish. An easy spot with kids is Point White Dock out at Crystal Springs. The dock is convenient to fish from and there is a rocky beach to explore where you can find very large, very colorful sea stars or starfish. I haven’t seen any fish come home, but they have had fun catching and releasing the small fish they have reeled in.
So, join us, throw caution to the wind and clean that bathroom next weekend. Hit the beach, hit the trails, remember to take advantage of all the island has to offer.