Cruising in the NorthwestThings to Do and Places to SeeWaggoner eNews

The beautiful cruising waters of South Puget Sound, south of The Narrows, has so much to offer Pacific Northwest boaters, with its 10 Washington State Parks with saltwater access, secluded anchorages, and large full-service marinas. Some of our favorite South Sound places to visit don’t fit in any of these categories. They are small privately owned marinas – a rare commodity nowadays – sprinkled throughout the area. They don’t have the amenities and attractions today’s larger marinas offer but what they lack is made up with:

  • Friendly personal service
  • Solitude
  • Down home feel and comfort of community marinas
  • A glimpse into the past when there were far more up and down Puget Sound, and many are historical sites.

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South Puget Sound’s Quaint Marinas

Lakebay Marina & Resort

In Carr Inlet, located in tiny May Cove is where you’ll find Lakebay Marina & Resort. The marina once serviced the Mosquito Fleet that operated in Puget Sound from 1850’s to 1930’s.

In October 2012, Mark Scott purchased the dilapidated marina with plans of upgrading and restoring it as a boating destination. The marina was in major disrepair, but a number of the renovations have been completed with more work in the planning stage.

Amenities & Attractions

  • 150-feet guest moorage, 30-amp power, fuel dock (gas only), water, restrooms, small general store, Wi-Fi.
  • Café featuring breakfast, burgers and fresh seafood.
  • The café has become popular with the local community.
  • Open mike night on Saturday evenings.

Longbranch Improvement Club float at marina.

Longbranch Improvement Club Marina

Located in Filucy Bay on the Key Peninsula is where you’ll find Longbranch Improvement Club Marina. The marina is popular with yacht clubs. It is said, the only thing to do in Filucy Bay is to relax.

The Longbranch Improvement Club was formed in 1921 for the betterment of the community. Moorage income supports public service projects.

Amenities & Attractions

  • 760-feet of side tie on a first-come, first-served basis, although advance notification for groups is requested.
  • 30-amp power, ice, garbage drop, Wi-Fi, and sani-cans.
  • On the dock is a large covered social and potluck area with storm curtains, barbecues, tables, chairs, and book exchange.

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Fair Harbor Marina

Located in Case Inlet behind Reach Island, known as Treasure Island by locals, is beautiful Fair Harbor Marina a small, quiet and well-maintained boating facility. This delightful spot owned and operated for the last 27 years by Vern and Susan Nelson, and is indeed a fair harbor in a well-protected secluded bay.

Amenities & Attractions

  • 350-feet of guest moorage, 30-amp power, water, gasoline only, and clean restrooms and showers.
  • A small store out on the dock offers a small selection of provisions, fishing supplies, and collectibles.
  • The pier is lined with hanging flower baskets, and the air is filled with the wonderful fragrance of the assortments of flowers on the well-maintained grounds.
  • The marina’s outdoor pavilion is a popular venue for yacht clubs and weddings.
  • Complimentary transportation to Lakeland Village Golf Course.

Jarrell's Cove Marina

Jarrell’s Cove Marina

Located in a tiny well-protected cove on the north end of Hartstene Island, well maintained Jarrell’s Cove Marina (800 362-8823) is owned and operated by Gary and Lorna Hink. Open seven days a week from Memorial Day to Labor Day. In the winter the store is closed, and fuel is available by appointment.

Amenities & Attractions

  • Limited guest moorage, fuel, propane, 30-amp power, water, restrooms, showers, laundry, and pumpout.
  • The upland area has three RV site picnic sites on two tree-shaded grass benches overlooking the cove and marina.
  • The marina’s convenience store is the only store on the island, and it has a selection of dry goods, dairy, frozen foods, snacks, wine, beer, fishing tackle and sno-cones.

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Boston Harbor Marina

Located between Dofflmyer Point and Dover Point, Boston Harbor Marina reminds visitors how small, privately owned marinas once served local communities throughout Puget Sound. The marina office and convenience store are housed in a building built in the 1920’s on pilings over the water.

Longtime neighbors and owners Kevin and Cam Foster-Keddie recently purchased the facility and plan to maintain its neighborhood charm.

Amenities & Attractions

  • 300-feet of guest moorage, 20-amp power, water, fuel, and Wi-Fi.
  • There are a sandy beach and kayak rentals.
  • The small store offers include groceries, locally caught salmon, crabs, and shellfish. The self-serve soft ice cream machine is a community favorite.
  • The outdoor deck with its scenic view and picnic tables serves as a community gathering place.
  • Friday night barbecues during the summer and excellent Sunday brunch (Jul.-Aug.)

 

~Deane Hislop

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  • Tim Jones

    I moved my boat to south sound about a year ago, April. Moored up at Boston Harbor Marina until the winter storm damaged the floats and finger piers. Looking forward to moving back there, once repaired. I also like Longbranch Improvement Club Marina, however, a bunch of us were booted out of there last June when a yacht club came in claiming all the available moorage. Their brochure says first come first served. Some who were booted had paid for their slip. Some miffed boaters that day. The harbormaster needs to review the marina’s reservation policy and update their printed brochures and web information. Great view of Rainier from there. Lakebay Marina is next on my list to visit. South sound is okay, that coming from me, having lived in San Juan County 40 years. Will say the boaters in south sound are in general pretty inconsiderate. Pretty good probability you are going to get waked in the anchorages.