Hammersly Inlet is a narrow section of South Puget Sound near Shelton, Washington. From the launch site at Oakland Bay Marina, the currents of Hammersley Inlet are instantly noticeable as you pass a lumber yard on the right. If you time your paddle correctly, the currents offer a quick and exciting passage through the inlet toward Hope Island and Pickering Passage.
Hammersley Inlet offers paddlers a great place to practice their boat handling skills through the eddies and currents that push through the inlet. As you paddle further along the inlet toward Hope Island, the houses are left behind and more wildlife can be spotted along the banks. The inlet offers a spectacular variety of wildlife from curious harbor seals, to jellyfish, cormorants, and even eagles during the fall and winter months. As the inlet opens up, there are often tide rips along the northern side of Steamboat Island that offer paddlers another place to hone their skills and play in the interesting currents. From there, Hope Island offers a great place to have lunch, hike along the long beaches, and wait for the tides to change before heading back.
Knowledge of tides and currents is essential before attempting this paddle. Kayakers should plan to leave the marina during the ebb tide and return on the flood.