Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Guided tours
No
Backcountry camping
No
Lodging
No
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Shark Reef Sanctuary is an exceptional option for a short hike and picnic area on Lopez Island. The trip from the trailhead down to the waterfront and back is just 0.5 miles each way, and the elevation gain is minimal, so the trail is suitable for all ages. Once you've made it to the shoreline you'll have superb panoramic views to the west. On a clear day you will see all of the following in clockwise order from east to west: the North Cascades National Park peaks; Mount Rainier; the Olympic Peninsula with the Olympic Mountains in Olympic National Park; Deadman Island, which will be covered in seals; Victoria Island; and Friday Harbor with the San Juan Islands National Monument. It's quite the view, so be sure to pack a meal and a blanket so that you can stay a while to soak it all in. 

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Sunset views. Wildlife viewing.

Cons

Private land cuts the access from extending past Deadman Island.

Features

Vault toilet
Wildlife
Whale watching
Family friendly
Geologically significant
Big vistas
Wildflowers
Bird watching
Lighthouse
Tide pools

Location

Field Guide

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