San Juan County High Point Trip Report

Mount Constitution (2,407 ft)

Date: November 16, 2002
Author: Bob Bolton

We got on the 8:50 AM ferry in Anacortes, WA bound for Orcas Island. It was a very windy day, the sky alternated between low racing clouds and brilliant sun breaks. As we neared Orcas, however, we could see that Mount Constitution was shrouded with clouds that seemed unwilling to disappear during the sun breaks, and of course we were hoping to experience John Roper's quote "The most magnificent marine view in the US". In hopes that the warming day and more frequent sun breaks might finally remove those clouds, we were in no hurry to make the drive to the summit. Among other activities, we enjoyed lunch at Café Olga before finally giving up and heading for the mountain.

The summit had thick, fast-moving fog and was anything but an enticing place to spend time admiring the non-existent "great marine view". I got the requisite GPS photo and we headed back to the ferry. While waiting in line, there was time for a little browsing at the local gift shops, and for some photos of the setting sun, which cast a pink hue on the fast-dwindling clouds. Sure enough, when we stopped at the Lopez Island terminal and could see north to where the mountain was, the radio towers' lights glowed brightly in the night sky. The next trip to the San Juans will involve much more time for those enchanting islands, and will definitely be in good weather!

GPS-based coordinates using NAD27 CONUS datum: (48.67780°N, 122.82989°W)