Saturday, January 25, 2014

No. 235 Smith Island Trail, Everett

Spencer Island
 4th St SE Everett, WA 98205
 Smith Island Trail : 2.6 miles
 Terrain: Soft, unstable ground, gravel and bridges

Smith Island Trail

Spencer Island lies in the heart of the Snohomish River Estuary, an ecosystem formed by mixing a freshwater system (the Snohomish River) and a saltwater system (Port Gardner Bay). It is one of the best places in the Snohomish River Estuary to view waterfowl and shorebirds such as ducks, heron, hawks and bald eagles. If you watch your steps you might see some small and larger mammals such as river otters and deer. On clear days the snow capped tops of the cascade mountain range and Mount Baker are visible to the east and to the north. The island is co-owned by Snohomish County and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. Snohomish County owns the south half of the island, while WDFW owns the north half. There is limited parking available for Spencer Island visitors and you have two main options. Park underneath to I-5 overpass by the Langus Riverfront trail or continue driving on the gravel road for another 1000 feet and you will see a small parking lot off to the right. Both sites have limited parking and when it is hunting season or a nice day expect them to fill up fast. Continue east along the gravel levy road for a 1/4 mile, cross over Jackknife bridge. Once on the other side depending on the tide and water level you can access a short boardwalk that offers up some nice views of the cascades and the teaming wildlife. The roof of an old abandoned barn is still visible. The barn came crashing down in a 2006 windstorm. There is a sign posted on the bridge that points which areas are county and state owned and where hunting is permitted. To start out on the 2.6 mile Smith Island Trail head south from Jackknife Bridge. The trail runs atop of a levy that surrounds Spencer Island. To make the loop stay to the right and this will take you along the southern end of the island and back north along the Ebey Slough to the Cross Island Trail which is your return. The trail for the most part is unimproved and soft and squishy from the natural vegetation. The Cross Island Trail is better maintained and has more gravel. After recent rainfall expect the trail to be very muddy and slippery.

Spencer Island Boardwalk
SSpencer Island Boardwalk 
Spencer Island Boardwalk Smith Island Trail Steamboat Slough Cross Island Bridge Blue Heron Spencer Island Blue Heron Spencer Island


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