The Location: Patos Island is one of Washington State’s San Juan Islands, and located in the archipelago’s northwest corner, in Georgia Strait.
The Activity: Kayaking
The small island of Patos (and its surrounding islets) is a rugged state park accessible only by boat. Despite possessing beautiful sandstone beaches, a primitive campground complete with a picnic site and composting toilet, and an active lighthouse that guides vessels between Canada and the U.S., the island sees very few visitors. For intrepid kayakers seeking solitude, it doesn’t get any better than this. Expect a five-mile paddle NNW of Orcas Island. Tim Thomsen of San Juan Kayak Expeditions is a great resource, and rents double sea kayaks for self-guided trips.
What Else to Do: Stay overnight (three nights maximum) or just stop in for a picnic. Saltwater fishing and clam digging are also in play, as is hiking the island’s 1.5-mile loop trail. Come April through June for the best wildflowers.
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