It’s August in the Pacific Northwest. In England, they’re setting heat records. In Hawaii, warm tropical breezes kiss the swaying palm trees. In Anacortes, Washington we have fog.

Rather than the sunny summer cruise to Port Townsend that I was expecting, we travelled for four hours in this…

With under a quarter mile of visibility, we spent a lot of time peering through the haze looking for other boats. I also got a lot of practice reading radar. At least the wind was light and the seas calm.

As my Boat Guru says, “With a working radar, AIS and a current insurance policy, your chances of survival are somewhat elevated.”

As we approached Port Townsend, the fog magically lifted, as fog will do. One minute, it’s cold, damp and dark. The next, it’s instant sunshine.

After tying up Impromptu at the Point Hudson marina and eating a bite of lunch, we set out on foot to have a look at Fort Worden State Park. We returned to the marina via the beach – about 3.5 miles in all.

As we headed uphill to the fort, we passed little Chetzemoka Park. Besides the garden-like upper bit, the park provides access to the beach.

Like other forts, housing at Fort Worden was organized by rank. Commanding Officer? Nicest house. Junior officers? Nice duplexes. Enlisted men? Barracks.

You’ll see a lot of these in the forts built to guard the waters of Puget Sound: bunkers coupled with gun emplacements. The guns are long gone, but the bunkers remain, providing endless hours of make believe and adventure for kids staying in the park’s campgrounds.

Lest we forget that it wasn’t all parade ground marching and whores in town.

After poking around a small part of this large park, we returned to the marina via the beach. See any fog? Me neither.

We took a walk around Port Townsend’s old town the next morning. There are really great old buildings here, lots of cast iron fronts. It’s nice to see more of them being restored. This painted advertising was in the front of a building under renovation.

This old waterfront cannery seems to have been converted into a private residence. I love the doorway.


  1. Love it. Thanks so much for the trip and the pictures! I know Fort Worden pretty well – actually I stayed there for three nights last summer. My friends’ friends were at Port Hudson, living on their boat!

    And Larry and I and family sometimes went to Fort Worden and stayed between Christmas and New Years. Great place for kids too.

    1. Those big old officers’ houses are just begging for family gatherings. We’ve talked about renting one for a gathering with friends – someday post-virus.

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