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Upright Head Preserve

Puget Sound and Islands


Puget Sound and Islands -- San Juan Islands
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1.2 miles, roundtrip


Gain: 300 ft.
Highest Point: 195 ft.


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Parking Pass/Entry Fee


A relaxing walk through land once slated for a housing development, the trail around Upright Head Preserve is an easy hike where one can watch ferries travel from one island to the next while waiting for their own. Remnants of roads and utilities make up part of the trail, with the rest on narrow dirt paths through the dense forest.

Begin by walking up Penny Lane, which is paved but closed to traffic. The road heads uphill and soon becomes a wide, graveled path. An interpretive sign with a trail map is located at the top of the hill. Notice utility boxes and fire hydrants resting among the tall hemlock and cedar trees.

After walking for 0.3 miles, spy a rock cairn on the left and turn here, heading into the woods on a dirt trail. A short walk uphill leads you to your first viewpoint. Next, follow the trail downhill through thick salal shrubs and find the next viewpoint near the water after 0.1 miles.

Return to the trail and continue for a few hundred feet, turning left when you reach the wider trail. A short walk down this trail brings you to the final viewpoint, featuring views of Mount Baker and nearby islands through the coastal madrone trees. Return the way you came, it's a half-mile walk back to the trailhead. 


Upright Head Preserve

Map & Directions

Co-ordinates: 48.5688, -122.8846 Open map in new window


Puget Sound and Islands -- San Juan Islands

San Juan County Land Bank, Upright Head Preserve

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Guidebooks & Maps

Day Hiking: The San Juans & Gulf Islands: National Parks / Anacortes / Victoria by Craig Romano (The Mountaineers)

San Juan County Land Bank

Upright Head Preserve (

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Getting There

Take the Washington State ferry from Anacortes to Lopez Island (reservations strongly recommended). Upon exiting ferry onto Ferry Road, drive .1 mile, then turn left into the ferry parking area next to the holding lanes. There is some room to park along the road as well. Trailhead is located on the west side of Ferry Road, on Penny Lane. Porta potties are located at the end of the parking lot.

Parking Pass/Entry Fee


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Upright Head Preserve

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