It had to be someplace different. A place that neither of us had been. Better yet, somewhere we had talked about going but had yet to make it happen. Once there, we should feel like we were away, truly away with ample opportunity for romantic adventure. Lastly, it had to be close enough to allow us to get the most out of our rather short trip. Fortunately there is no shortage of beauty in the Pacific Northwest so I didn’t have to look long before selecting Orcas Island as our destination.
Traveling to the island offered another great opportunity – float planes. Operated by Kenmore Air, this convenient and quick trip by air departs from the waters of Lake Union providing access to several destinations along the San Juan Islands. We’ve often watched them take off from a restaurant table, park or the deck of a boat so the intrigue was already there. I managed to keep the destination a secret which required that the mode of transportation also remain under wraps. On the morning of the trip, we boarded a rather small 7 passenger deHavilland Beaver and departed the waters of Lake Union bound for Orcas Island. Very exciting!
The lady just before our departure from Lake Union.
7-Seat Kenmore Air Float Plane.
Traveling by air along the island chains at such a low altitude offers a very unique vantage point of the Puget Sound. Here are a few pictures to give you a feel:
A shot just after lift-off from Lake Union.
The San Juan Islands from the air.
Landing in Deer Harbor, Orcas Island.
After dropping off the other passengers at Deer Harbor!
We landed at Rosario Resort and Spa. Walked up a dilapidated dock and climbed into a convertible Mazda Miata which I had rented from one of two car rental businesses on the island. A special shout out to Amy Masters who owns Orcas Island Shuttle for taking extra time to point out a few key attractions on the island. She is awesome!
Driving this little beauty was a blast!
A quick shot that turned out quite nice!
During our 2 night stay on the island, we drove to the top of mount constitution, had lunch at a fantastic Thai-inspired outdoor restaurant called The Kitchen, toured the entire island and saw a great concert performed at the Rosario Resort on one of the largest private air organs in existence. We stayed at the Inn at Ship Bay, which was very romantic and featured a restaurant that was arguably the best the island had to offer. That is where we had dinner on Saturday night.
Driving up toward Mount Constitution.
At the top of Mount Constitution, Orcas Island, WA
View from the Inn at Ship Bay Restaurant, Orcas Island, WA.
Perfect afternoon glass of wine at the Inn at Ship Bay.
More beautiful scenery from the Inn at Ship Bay, Orcas Island, WA.
After dinner it was time; the weather was beautiful, the moon was out and it was just Jen and I overlooking the tranquil waters of Ship Bay. As we sat there discussing what a great time we were having, sipping an after-dinner port, I pulled the ring from my pocket, told her I loved her and opened the box. This was no ordinary box – not just because it had an engagement ring in it, but because it also featured a small light that illuminated the ring showing off all of its sparkles despite the moon-lit darkness. I must admit, it was a bit humorous and we both laughed a bit. It was then that I popped the question; fortunately she said yes.
And so it went, the next day we drove down to Doe Bay, sat in a pair of Adirondacks soaking up the sun with a beer in hand. That vision pretty much encapsulates our time on the island. We both feel very fortunate to have such remarkable beauty just a short float plane away.
Doe Bay, Orcas Island, WA.
Maggie brought us home safe and sound!
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