Sunday, June 19, 2011

Day 34 - Reid Harbor, Stuart Island WA - Sunday, June 12, 2011

We awake this morning to find the dozen kayaks heading out before breakfast -- our breakfast -- at first they are all in single file, then the strongest slowly makes it to become the leader of the pack! 

They are all wearing life jackets, and the water is cold.

Soon there is a parade of dinghies bringing all the dogs to shore from their anchoring or mooring buoy places.  Up the hill are nice trails for the dogs to walk.

Our ambitious plan for the day is to hike to the lighthouse at Turn Point.  It is a three mile walk from our dock to the point -- up steep hills in the path and down again.  Then three miles back, both up and down the strenuous trail.

We can do this.

We prepare a light picnic lunch, complete with water bottles and a water dish for Jake, and start up the hill to fill the bottles at the picnic site.

We needn't have bothered with either the water or the dog dish, as we found frequent water stations along the trail.  

We especially enjoyed the view of our boat docked among the others from the vantage point up on the cliff as we began the hike.

Not far along the trail we come to a very steep and rugged path.  

And then the steps!  The steps!  Lots of step!  Many steps!  Oh, the steps!  They go up and they go down!

We press on and soon came to a sign about a Treasure Chest.  A family named Benson started a business of selling shirts, hats, etc., on the honor system.   Take what you want, leave money, or pay on the internet.  

We stop to window shop.  For our convenience (and to keep the entrepreneurs from having to refold each item and repackage) they have a clothesline displaying each item that would be found in the Treasure Chest. While we check for correct sizes, Jake eyes the water dish on the side.  The Benson family has left us paper cups and a fresh cooler of water.  We also enjoy the bench for a rest.

After a time, we continue on and come to the school, which is still used today. 

On the grounds of the school house there is also a museum open all day, unattended, and we see pictures of the teacher for the year 2005, Mrs. Coates, and her five students -- all with the last name of Coates.  Sounds to me like home-schooling in the school house.

Also in the museum is the library, which looks very inviting, and we wish we had time to sit and read a bit.  

There is airplane service to Stuart Island.

We see an automobile that needs work -- I think it has been on the Earth longer than I have.

At last we come to the sign announcing the Turn Point Light Station and we know we are almost there.

We walk on a few more hills -- up and down -- and then we see it.  The Light Station!  A few more feet and we are there.  It is a very nice 360 degree view, as we sit on the steps of the light house and spread our picnic lunch.  The ants found us, but we are faster than they and they don't get the benefit of any crumbs.

I am definitely enjoying the view and especially happy that we have accomplished half of our hike!  Right now I don't want to think about the hills that we have to climb as we do the trek in reverse.  Three more miles......

On the way back to Willie's Tug we take frequent rest stops, and admire the trees, the terrain, and the birds.  One particular bird call sounds to Herb like a ball bearing going bad; however, it sounded quite pleasant to me.   We don't see as many seagulls in the islands as we do in the Laguna Madre area in the Texas Valley, and they don't sound the same.  

After so many years of riding motorcycles and attending almost every BMW-I rally held, and buying a tee shirt or sweat shirt at every one, I planned never to buy another one.

However,  I am drawn to the trusting nature of the Benson family and sure could use another long sleeve tee.  The maroon colored one with the cute bird appeals to me, so I 'try' one on for size.   

Jake takes a rest after drinking  from the Benson's water dish and we hit the trail again.  From here, it is a relatively short walk back to the ramp which leads to the dock, and I hope the tide is high, so it won't be so steep.  I think it must be Wine Time!

Willie of Willie's Tug,
    and Walldog, Willie and Jake

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