SUP Adventure Tour on Blake Island
Journey to an island on Puget Sound within sight of downtown Seattle with rich cultural and marine history. Tucked between the Kitsap Pensinsula and Bainbridge and Vashon Islands, Blake Island has epic views of Mt Rainier, the Olympic Mountains and passing ship and ferry traffic.
About the Area
Our Blake Island SUP trip takes you to the birthplace of Chief Seattle or Chief Si’ahl who witnessed as a boy Captain Vancouver’s arrival in 1792. Blake was later named for a member of the Wilkes Expedition in 1841. The island was also known for its bootleggers during the Prohibition era.
Mostly forested, the island has a walking trail around the island and untouched Salish Sea beaches you can explore at low tide. The three campsites each face different directions with distant views of Seattle, narrow Rich Passage and Olympic Mountains or southwards down the Colvos Passage alongside Vashon Island. You’ll see deer, bald eagles, raccoons and marine life such as harbor seals, marine birdlife and otters.
The only development on Blake area a small marina and the Salish style longhouse of Tillicum Village which provides a salmon dinner and traditional Salish dances.
Day 1 – We’ll pick a route that fits the group’s skill level and our weather conditions. There’s several approaches to the island from 1.5 miles to longer. En route we’ll discuss hands-on navigation, boating right of way, how to read weather and the water to make the best paddling decisions. We’ll also cover skills for open water paddling.
Once on the island, we’ll set up camp, relax and explore the mostly forested island and it’s empty beaches. Evening includes a campfire under the stars while watching ferries pass by.
Day 2 – After breakfast, we’ll determine if we want to pursue a morning beach walk or island paddle, then check our tides and weather, pack up and paddle back to our put-in. Alternatively, we can stay much of the day then head back late afternoon.
Skill Prerequisites: Intermediate
You have taken my SUP Basics 2 class and/or have proven experience standing in bumps from boat wakes and/or wind. You can paddle mostly straight for 1 mile, can fall and get back on easily in conditions. You can paddle up wind, in side-winds and can paddle over small waves while standing.
If you’re bringing your own board, I require no shorter than 12′-6″ in length to allow for speed and space to store gear. My rental boards include 14′ and 18′ boards.
“I’ve had many SUP, surfing (and beyond) lessons world-wide but I haven’t found an expert in the area that compares to Rob’s level of quality experience, competency and teaching skills. Rob emphasizes safety first and caters to each individuals personal learning style in delivering quality instruction to paddlers of all levels. He truly went above and beyond and has set the bar extremely high for a business model that I hope to mirror. I will definitely return to him for further training.”
“Rob is an expert in SUP and offers even more relevant training and helpful information because of his background in kayaking. His skill, knowledge and expertise exceeded my expectations. He presented the information and training in a very clear and concise manner; adding many various tips throughout his instruction. Rob is encouraging, patient and practical – all very important traits when teaching a subject. The course more than met my needs – I learned a lot and as a beginner – I have a lot to learn. I will continue to turn to him as my ‘go to’ resource in all matters SUP. I’m extremely glad I chose Salmon Bay Paddle and Rob for my first professional training in SUP. I felt safe and confident with him the whole time.”