Paddling Thurston Howell, III alias the Swinomish Channel
Paddling Thurston Howell, III or Swinomish Channel or Got Wood?
Heading north from the yachting town of La Conner can be sort of pleasant paddle if the conditions are right.
The Swinomish Channel is nicked named here Thurston Howell, III in honor of the Howell characters on the olden days other tube TV program Gilligan’s Island. The channel can be busy with them that have money to burn on giant ships for the famous three hour tour.
The paddle from the little village on the channel of La Conner is pleasant enough. The tribal side is more or less piles of timber and some woodsy looking stuff. The eastern shore is farm land with a levee that in March featured daffodils in bloom and herons doing their thing as works did their jobs in the fields.
Once north of town there are sandy banks that might be nice on warm days. Good place to hop out and stretch the legs. From atop the bank on the eastern shore where it is public access, the view of the farms and Mt Baker are worth the paddle.
North of the open feeling is the start of “Where there is water, there are houses” eyesores that stretch north to Highway 20 and Paddilla Bay and on to places like Anacortes, and other paddling adventures in the bay. Note the bay to the north of the channel is a giant mud flat like the Goat Island area to the south of the channel that creates Fidalgo Island.