BREMERTON, WA (January 13, 2021) – A conservation partnership has protected the 20.7-acre Misery Point Preserve on Hood Canal near Seabeck. Great Peninsula Conservancy (GPC), the regional land trust operating in Kitsap, north Mason, and west Pierce counties, received funding from the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program through partnership with the Washington State Department of Ecology. The project was also funded through a grant from the Salmon Recovery Funding Board managed by Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office as well as a grant from the US Navy’s Readiness and Environmental Protection Initiative program.
The property was purchased for $1.8 million from willing landowners at the end of December 2020 and will be actively managed by GPC as a wilderness preserve with future plans for public access.
The Twana name of this point from the Skokomish Tribe is duxʷ’axa∙′dač, meaning the place that is like an arm. “Misery Point” likely took its name from the smallpox epidemic that devastated Native American tribes in the 19th century. While the name remembers a tragic past, today this magnificent lagoon on the western side of Seabeck Bay is a peaceful oasis for the wildlife and nearby residents that call it home.
The preserve’s pristine shoreline boasts feeder bluffs, a rocky beach, and a saltwater lagoon that provide ideal habitat for salmon, birds, and other wildlife. The protection of undeveloped shorelines on Hood Canal is essential for the health of the orca food chain, with particular benefits for forage fish and Hood Canal summer chum.
Passive recreation will be promoted at the new preserve, particularly by kayak, though access inside the lagoon is not currently allowed. In the future, GPC hopes to create a trail to the beach for guided preserve tours and will eventually work to create more public access opportunities through the GPC Lands Labs Program.
Funding for the project also came from Kitsap Audubon Society, Hood Canal Environmental Council, and GPC members.
About Great Peninsula Conservancy
Great Peninsula Conservancy is a nonprofit land trust working to protect the natural habitats, rural landscapes, and open spaces of the Great Peninsula – a region encompassing Kitsap, north Mason, and west Pierce counties, Washington. Great Peninsula Conservancy has protected over 10,500 acres of this spectacular region of west Puget Sound, including magnificent forests, saltwater shorelines, salmon streams, and wildlife-rich estuaries. More at www.greatpeninsula.org.