Sea Kayak - Burrows & Allan Islands

Launch from Washington park to paddle around Burrows and Allen Islands.

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  • Sea Kayak IV
  • Challenging
  • Mileage: 9.0 nm
  • Elevation Gain: 10 ft

Meet at Washington Park hand-launch beach.  This is in the north east corner of the park.  Drive the main road through Anacortes into Washington Park and follow signs to the beach. Take the turn just before the entrance to the Boat Ramp, as there is a divider separating the two areas, and we want to be able to park near the beach to unload boats. Then move cars to nearby lots, such as by the playgound, as the parking near the beach is for temporary use only. Bathrooms are up the hill from the Boat Ramp or use the "portajohn" by the playground.

Launch time:  10:00 am (to catch tide)

Discuss route:  9:30 am (a meeting to discuss the currents and how to deal with them.  15-20 minutes)

Meeting time:  8:45 am or earlier to allow yourself enough time to prepare

We will launch from Washington park, paddle around the headland, and figure 8 Allen Burrows and Allen Island.  It is a beautiful area and reminds me of the outer coast.

The distance is not so great so we can go at a medium pace and take several breaks.  I like to take time to practice skills such as rescue, rolls, towing, or anything people want to practice.  

Currents are strong on this day, up nearly 4 knots between Burrows and Allen on the afternoon flood.  This is a great opportunity to discuss strategies for dealing with currents, favorable, unfavorable, and sideways.  We will have all of them on this trip.  We will pick our route to take best advantage of them, sneak around them, and hide from them, but will end up paddling against the current at times.

This is winter.  Water and air are cold so dress for immersion.  Bring gloves, hats, and extra layers.   

  • Difficulty: SK-IV
  • Wind: Up to 15kn
  • Waves: Up to 2 ft
  • Route:  Figure 8 around both islands
  • Distance:  9nm
  • Pace:  Medium

Winter conditions are variable.  We will go in forecast winds up to 15 knots and waves up to 2ft.  If conditions are rougher than that we will back off to paddling around Fox island (12nm) or a loop in Lake Washington.

This trip is a new leader run trip, mentored by Brian High.


Burrows & Allan Islands

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

These seven essentials plus The Ten Essentials are required on all sea kayaking trips.  All but the whistle and clothing should be provided with any kayak rental.

  1. Floatation in both ends of the kayak
  2. U.S. Coast Guard approved Personal Flotation Device (PFD)
  3. Paddle
  4. Spray skirt
  5. Bilge pump with floatation
  6. Self-rescue paddle float
  7. Waterproof whistle
  8. Appropriate clothing for the conditions encountered seasonally
Trip Reports