Discovering Indian Island

Posted by Teri

Driving into Eastsound for the past 23 years I’ve noticed my view always gravitates to the south toward Indian Island to check out the tide situation. During low tide there are people that look like little ants exploring it. I’ve often thought “I want to do that!”  Then I go about my day of business forget about the little rock.

Indian Island in Fishing Bay, Orcas Island WA

The 1.25 acre island in Fishing Bay is only accessible by foot during low tide.

Well, researching for my recent post on its history kept this curious island lingering in my mind. I made a mental note to check the tide tables and get a closer look.

My son Eric accompanied me one morning as we started out from Eastsound Waterfront Park. The park itself is a wonderful spot to take in the long view down the dramatic fjord of East Sound.

Ochre starfish at Indian Island tidepool, Orcas Island WA

The Ochre Sea Star comes in a variety of colors

We took a leisurely stroll along the emergent sandbar, then skirted the island’s perimeter to examine the many tide pools . Full of color and critters, each was fascinating and worthy of a long stare to notice some of the more subtle sea life.

There’s life on the rock itself too. The knolls are covered with wildflowers and in season, birds nesting. The day we were there we happened upon Canadian Geese nesting. I later found out there were Black Oystercatchers nesting too.  It’s important not to disturb them; these are a sensitive ‘indicator’ species of ‘high concern.’

Indian Island was the first of three Marine Health Observatories in the San Juan Islands. There is important ongoing research being conducted there by scientists and volunteers.

Indian Island is another example of how we’re learning about and caring for our fragile ecosystem in the San Juans. I feel fortunate we’re able to enjoy its beauty and creatures up-close. And I won’t be waiting 23 years to go back!

Looking to enjoy the simple life on beautiful Orcas Island?
Contact T Williams Realty  – we’ll help you find your way home.


Filed under Adventure, Community, Nature

4 Responses to Discovering Indian Island

  1. I’m inspired to go now too. Can’t believe I’ve never been.

    • Teri Williams

      It’s a great place to walk and explore! Careful to watch the tide. You can get stranded out there and I am not fond of wading (or swimming) in cold water:) Let me know about your adventure out when you get a chance to come into town with some time to play!!!

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  3. Even though I grew up there it wasn’t until I was in high school or even later than I finally walked out there – how silly! I loved it. I remember seeing Chocolate Lillies, which were lovely. BUT…wear your boots…it’s a necessity!