San Juan Islands Adventure

 


What: 5 nights/6 days sailing adventure through the San Juan Islands

Where: Start and End in Bellingham, Washington


Travel

Our Trip Begins at 2 PM on Sunday AFTERNOON.

wE MEET IN THE lOBBY OF THE hOTEL bELLWETHER. 

Located at: 1 Bellwether Way Bellingham, WA 98225

There is free underground Parking at the Marina (Under the Hotel Bellwether)

 

Getting to and From Bellingham

  • Bellingham, Washington is about 80 miles North of Seattle. There are several ways to get to Bellingham: 
    • Fly Directly to Bellingham International Airport. This is certainly the easiest option and logistically simplest. Flying in and out of Bellingham can add extra cost though. Alaska Airlines has regular flights, as do smaller regional airlines. 
    • Fly to SeaTac (located 20 minutes south of downtown Seattle). SeaTac is the largest airport with the most options for getting to the Seattle Area. From SeaTac you have several options for getting to Bellingham
      • Rent a car at Seatac and drive to Bellingham. The drive from Seatac to Bellingham can be as short as 2 hours, and as long as 5 (depending on traffic). Once in Bellingham, you can return the rental car at the Bellingham Airport, or park it for free at the Marina where we depart.
      • Take the Bellair Airporter Shuttle Bus from Seatac to Bellingham. About $40.00 dollars each way. This option is easy, but you need to make sure your flights line up with the Shuttle.
      • Take the Bolt Bus from Downtown Seattle. This is a good and relatively cheap option.  The tricky part is that the Bolt Bus leaves from Downtown Seattle instead of Seatac Airport. If you plan on spending a day or two in Seattle (which if time allows is a wonderful idea!) than this is a good option. To get to downtown Seattle from the airport there is a Light Rail train that runs regularly. Fares are between $10- $30
      • Take the Amtrak from Downtown Seattle to Fairhaven (the "old town" of Bellingham).This is my favorite option by far! The train ride from Seattle to Bellingham is relaxing and beautiful. The train leaves from downtown Seattle (King Street Station). Fares range $20-$40.
      • Bellingham has easy options for getting around town. If you are staying in downtown Bellingham, walking/renting a bike is very convenient and easy. Uber, Lyft, and Taxis are also available. 

ACCOMMODATIONS in Bellingham

Bellingham is a wonderful seaside community. It is home to Western Washington University, a strong Marine Industry, and a close proximity and influence from Canada. There are a ton of excellent places to eat, great walking/hiking/biking trails, and wonderful shops, bars, art galleries, and cafes to explore. We recommend that you arrive in Bellingham the Saturday before your trip begins, and depart Bellingham the following Saturday. If you do this, you'll need accommodations for your first Saturday night, and the following Friday evening.

A quick Google, or Expedia search will give you a ton of options for hotels, B&Bs, and motels.  Guests also often choose to stay at Airbnb, which there are plenty.

We always like to suggest staying at the Hotel Bellwether. It's one of only a few waterfront Hotels in Bellingham, and logistically it is really easy for Guests because it's literally next to the Marina where Hopscotch lives. So if your Budget allows, the Hotel Bellwether is a good option too!


 

Schedule and the Three "w"s

We want you to remember your time in the San Juans as one of the most wonderful and relaxing adventures of your life. We have a schedule that we "try" to stick to, but we almost never do entirely! The main reason we don't is because of the three W's...Wind, Weather, and Whales! This usually means that we are having too much fun sailing, watching whales, or enjoying a lazy day on the beach to hurry off to our next stop, so we are flexible and always try to make the best of any situation that comes our way!

 

Please Plan on arriving in Bellingham (or Seattle) one day prior to the BEGINNING of your Charter Date (Sunday at 2:00 pm). We recommend this so that flight and other travel delays do not cause us to start your trip late.

  • Day 1: Sunday 

    • 2:00 PM: Meet in the Lobby of the Hotel Bellwether located at: 1 bellwether Way Bellingham, WA 98225
    • 2:30 PM: After a getting settled and going over a few details we will depart Bellingham and head for Sucia Island State Park!
    • Early Evening: We arrive Sucia and have time to explore, paddle, hike, or just relax and take in the views before dinner.

 

  • Day 2: Monday

    • After a great breakfast, for those who are interested, Brendan will take you on a hike to check out 70 million year old fossils! 
    • We Depart Sucia around 11 am and head Southwest towards Roche Harbor. Along the way we will sail as much as possible, and go past Speiden Island where we hope to see Mouflon and other crazy exotic animals!
    • We'll arrive in Roche Harbor in the early afternoon and have time to check out the Historic "Resort" and Marina. There are a few special treasures to check out at Roche!
    • We depart Roche in the early evening and head just 20 minutes South to Garrison Bay, also known as English Camp. Garrison Bay has wonderful calm waters for paddling. English camp has a couple of awesome hikes, and plenty of fascinating history to check out!

 

  • Day 3: Tuesday

    • We depart English Camp and head out into Haro Straight. We keep a lookout for Orcas and Humpbacks. The Southern Resident Killer Whales (Orcas) spend a lot of time in the Salmon rich waters off of the West Side of San Juan Island. We'll hopefully see one of the three (J, K, and L) Pods, or perhaps some Transient Killer Whales, or even Humpbacks! We don't always see whales on this day, but we usually see them at some point in our journey! As I like to tell guests: "We can guarantee a possibility of seeing some great whales!"
    • We make our way North to the beautiful and quaint, Stuart Island, where we will anchor in Reid or Prevost Harbor in the early afternoon.
    • The afternoon at Stuart can be spent hiking to the school house and light station (always a favorite!), or just relaxing and paddling the calm waters.

 

  • Day 4: Wednesday 

    • Today we leave Stuart Island in the morning and head for the town of Friday Harbor, on San Juan Island.
    • Arriving in the Early Afternoon, Friday Harbor has something for everyone. Today you are "on your own" for Dinner, and there are plenty of great restaurants! Often guests rent bikes, or mopeds to explore some of the beauty that San Juan has to offer. There are also a number of shops, ice cream stops, and bars to keep everyone happy!
  • Day 5: Thursday 

    • After Breakfast we depart Friday Harbor and head "Through the Islands" towards our eventual stop of Cypress Island.
    • Along the way we will most likely stop at either Jones Island (for some hiking) or Rosario Resort (for some swimming, and/or a tour of the old Hotel/Mansion)
    • We arrive at Cypress island in time for sunset and a great last dinner on board Hopscotch! 
    • Cypress has a ton of incredible hiking trails and beaches to explore

 

  • Day 6: Friday

    • After a breakfast and final stroll on the island we say goodbye to the San Juans and cross back over to Bellingham Bay.
    • We arrive back in Bellingham around noon.

Logistics

  • What to Bring: 
    • We recommend packing like you are going to San Francisco in the Summer Time! Most of the time shorts and a t-shirt or sweatshirt will be perfect. Evenings you may want pants or sweats. We value comfort over style on Hopscotch, and nobody is going to judge you for wearing the same thing twice (or all week!). 
    • Shoes, or barefoot is fine on board. On land, tennis shoes, are usually great. Hiking boots are not really necessary in the San Juans. Flip flops are great for the Islands, but we don't recommend wearing them on board (too many things to get caught on).
    • We have plenty of sunscreen, and extra toiletries on board, but please feel free to bring your own as well!
    • Unfortunately Hair Dryers and Electric (plug in) Razors tend to use a lot of electricity so we try to minimize use of those...but every other day we are at a Marina with shower facilities. 
    • Please bring any Hard Alcohol you wish to consume. We've got you covered on Beer and Wine. But if you have particular Wine/Beer that you would like to bring, please feel free.
  • Other Expenses: Prices include all food (you are responsible for one meal "out on the town" in Friday Harbor), beverages, gear, and supplies. You will need to make travel arrangements to and from Bellingham, Washington (or give us a call and we'll help you out!). Prices do not include any of the following (if you choose to): alcohol, fishing licenses, or crew gratuities. 
  • In the Charter industry, if service was excellent, it is customary to leave a %15-20 Gratuity on the total cost of the Charter. If service was less than excellent, we ask that you speak with us about it.