Deadman Bay on the Westside of San Juan Island got its ominous name from the isle’s turbulent past as a smuggler’s haven. In the late 1880, Ben Ure and his motley crew, smuggled illegal Chinese laborers in burlap sacks – to avoid detection from US Customs – from Canada to the US. When Customs came into sight, he threw the immigrants overboard. Some didn’t make it. The current washed them up at Deadman Bay.
Today the beautiful crescent shaped bay with the best tide pools on the island, is a popular rest stop for kayakers, day hikers and beach combers alike. Visitors can often observe whales, otters, seals and seabirds.
~ Photo courtesy of Don Price.