With a firm date approaching to pick up Lauryn at Friday Harbor, I noticed a couple of days with very mild tides, so headed to Lopez Island to try my luck at the entrance to Fisherman Bay. Approaching from the NorthWest, rounding the red day marker and the sand spit is pretty easy, even when maneuvering around a departing sailboat. Where most boaters run into trouble is just past the green markers, where a sharp turn to port is required. The entrance opens up to a wide and calm Fisherman Bay, but there is a long, shallow, sand bar blocking the entrance. It extends almost all the way east to the Islands Marine Center dock, so do not turn south until you pass the #8 Red Buoy. This is well charted, but looks confusing when entering for the first time because there are so many boats and mooring buoys covering the entire bay.Once clear of the sand bar, we putzed over to the Lopez Islander Resort and Marina and tied Yes Please up in a slip. The marina has a lot of deferred maintenance and is in need of some TLC. I was surprised by the cost (very high) and lack of services for visiting boaters.
Venturing ashore, we found Lopez Village to be charming and enjoyed bicycling around the island (which is relatively flat). The dog was captivated by the overabundance of bunnies (aka rabbits) that are everywhere and spent most of his time testing my arm strength (and the leash) trying to chase running bunnies. He reports that bunny poop is very tasty and wants to know when we are returning to Lopez.
The Lopez Islander Resort itself is well past its prime. The onsite restaurant, Islander Bar and Grill, advertises itself as “fine dining since 1952”. Our experience is exactly the opposite. Service is glacial (about 45 minutes to get a menu and another hour or so to get served, even on a slow day) and the food was the worst I have ever been served in the San Juan Islands in the 40 years that I have been visiting. The “medium rare” rib-eye steak I was given was pretty much shoe leather, that was nearly impossible to cut with a steak knife, much less chew, with zero seasoning.
We spent two days at the marina, visiting the restaurant several times for breakfast, lunch and dinner and found the food to be universally, very bad. We will be back to Lopez Island, but will skip the Lopez Islander.