Volunteer: Reef Island Beach Cleanup
Only a short boat ride from Deer Harbor, the Reef Island Preserve feels like a world away, sitting just outside of Deer Harbor as well as the center of the islands' bustling boating lanes. It’s a prominent part of the Wasp Island group, which the Preservation Trust has long regarded as a high-priority area for conservation. The preserve adds to other Preservation Trust-protected areas in the Wasp group, which include the McConnell Preserve and Thompson Conservation Easement (McConnell Island). Other nearby islands are protected by WA State Parks (Jones Island) and The Nature Conservancy (Yellow Island).
Come enjoy some outer-island tranquility and pitch in with spring cleanup on this beautiful preserve, with a focus on the beach since the rest of the island is sensitive habitat. The island is heavily wooded with a rare mixed forest of Douglas fir, seaside juniper, and Garry oak. The forest is punctuated by scattered rocky balds, a small human-cleared meadow near the north end, and a tombolo on the southwest corner. The island is roughly rectangular in shape—about 500 feet across east to west and 1,500 feet north to south—and has nearly a mile of shoreline. It’s partially surrounded by rocky reefs, from which it likely got its name.
Reef Island Land Steward Troy Buckley will lead and Jack Russillo, Volunteer and Outreach Coodinator, will support. Listed start and end times are approximate. SJPT staff plan to launch kayaks from the San Juan County Conservation Land Bank Deer Harbor Waterfront Preserve, although other launch sites in the area include Deer Harbor Marina and Cayou Quay Marina. This event is meant only for participants who will be using human-powered watercraft such as kayaks or canoes, as powerboats can be difficult to maneuver in the currents and reefs around the island.
We are partnering with Shearwater Adventures, who has been kind enough to donate a kayak guide and kayaks to any participants who do not have their own watercraft to get out to Reef Island. Please send Jack an email (email@example.com) if you register and would like to use one of their vessels (free of charge).
Details about when and where to meet, etc., will be emailed to registered participants prior to the event. We'll supply tools and some snacks. Bring your own lunch and water bottle/beverage.
- Date: Friday, March 29, 2024
- Time: 11:00am - 3:00pm
- Location: Reef Island Preserve
- Bring: Sturdy walking shoes for beach and forest trails, gear for water transit (life jacket, sunglasses, etc), water, lunch
- Questions? Email Jack Russillo, SJPT Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator
This event is limited to the first 10 people who sign up. (You can join the waiting list when you sign up if capacity has been reached. If there are cancellations, we will contact the next in line as soon as possible.)
All participants are required to sign an SJPT liability waiver. Please ensure that everyone you register, including yourself, has filled out our online waiver in English or en Español (required as part of the registration process).
Todos los participantes deben firmar una exención de responsabilidad del SJPT. Asegúrese de que todas las personas que registre, incluido usted mismo, hayan completado nuestra exención en línea en inglés o en español (requerido como parte del proceso de registro).
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