Walking Ten Miles Round Trip to the New Dungeness Lighthouse

by Debby Jagerman-Dungan
( April 7th, 2014 )

New Dungeness Lighthouse


Several years before we got married, my husband and I went on a car camping trip to Dungeness Spit, located on the Olympic Peninsula in Sequim, Washington. The purpose of this trip was to walk the 5 miles to the New Dungeness Lighthouse located near the end of Dungeness Spit. And walk the 5 miles back to the campground! I loved being able to walk for miles and miles and miles on a beach, hearing the waves and birds, feeling like I was out in the middle of nowhere. Now this would have made another beautiful location for our wedding, but alas I did not think that our guests would have wanted to walk 10 miles on our wedding day.

 

New Dungeness Spit Lighthouse


What is really unique about the New Dungeness Lighthouse is it is one of the very few lighthouses that provide the opportunity to see what it is like to live the life of a Lighthouse Keeper. Yes, if you are up for it, and are a current member of the New Dungeness Light Station Association, you can live the life of a Keeper for a week in much the same isolation as Keepers of the 19th century did. You would be responsible for the operation of the Lighthouse, maintenance, repairs, taking care of the lawn, and giving guided tours to those who have made their way to the lighthouse, like us, who had walked the 5 miles to get there.

 

Lighthouse New Dungeness


In use for the first time on December 14, 1857, the New Dungeness Lighthouse is one of the oldest lighthouses in the Northwest. It was originally 91 feet tall, but due to deterioration over time, and possibly damage from an earthquake, the lighthouse tower was lowered to 63 feet in 1972. It was automated in 1976, although it was the last lighthouse on the West Coast to be manned by the Coast Guard until 1994. It has 74 steps to the top for a nice view.

Located on the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and part of the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge, the six-mile total, flat sandbar of Dungeness Spit is one of the longest natural spits in the world. Be sure to check the tide tables, and plan on at least a 5 hour round trip for walking to the Lighthouse. Access to the lighthouse is also possible by kayak.

 

Dungeness Spit Lighthouse


Now while we did not have our wedding at the New Dungeness Lighthouse, or at one of my favorite places on this planet, the Discovery Park Lighthouse, needless to say we did have the perfect wedding at the Mukilteo Lighthouse!

Sweet Travels!

Some information in this blog obtained from:
New Dungeness Lighthouse
Lighthouse Friends – New Dungeness Lighthouse, WA

2 comments
 

West Point Lighthouse at Discovery Park in Seattle (and almost a Wedding)

by Debby Jagerman-Dungan
( March 27th, 2014 )

West Point Lighthouse Discovery Park Olympic Mountains


On a clear day, while standing at the sandy and rocky tip near the West Point Lighthouse, you can amazingly see three of Washington State’s major mountains and ranges at one time – Mt. Baker to the north, the Olympic Mountains to the west, and Mt. Rainier to the south. With beautiful views like this, it one of my favorite places on this planet.

 

West Point Lighthouse Discovery Park Olympics


Located below Magnolia Bluff at Discovery Park in Seattle, next to the waters of Puget Sound, with beaches on either side of the lighthouse, and hiking in the bluffs above, this would have been a beautiful setting for our wedding. Alas, they do not allow weddings to take place right at the lighthouse, only at a few places in the park above. However, it ended up not mattering much, because where we got married, right next to the Mukilteo Lighthouse, was perfect.

 

West Point Lighthouse Discovery Park Mt. Baker


Construction of the West Point Lighthouse, also known as the Discovery Park Lighthouse, started in July 1881, and by November of the same year, it was operational. At a height of 23 feet, what makes this lighthouse unique is that this was the last lighthouse in the state of Washington to be automated, which did not occur until 1985.

 

West Point Lighthouse Discovery Park Mt. Rainier


Currently part of the City of Seattle Parks and Recreation Department, I love visiting the West Point Lighthouse at Discovery Park because it is close to home, has the hiking trails above, has great views, the water, and of course the lighthouse itself. The photos in this blog were taken on a clear January day a few months ago where my husband and I could see the Olympics (the first two photos), Mt. Baker (the small white spot, in the distance, on the right side of the third picture), and Mt. Rainier (in the distance on the right side of the last picture).

Sweet Travels!

Some information in this blog obtained from:

Lighthouse Friends

3 comments
 

The Mukilteo Lighthouse near Seattle (and a Wedding)

by Debby Jagerman-Dungan
( March 19th, 2014 )

A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you can control it.” John Steinbeck.

I love lighthouses. I am completely fascinated by them. So much so that I visit as many of them as I can when I travel, I write blogs about them, AND I got married at one last summer! The Mukilteo Lighthouse was the location of our grand event. Located about 30 minutes north of Seattle, Washington, next to the ferry landing in Mukilteo, our wedding day was warm and sunny, with a slight breeze. With the background of not only the lighthouse, but also the ferries, the waters of Puget Sound, and Whidbey Island beyond, it was perfect.

Mukilteo Lighthouse Seattle


I wore a lacey silvery-blue dress, my two sisters and my husband’s brother stood beside us, my niece was our flower girl, and many of our guests sat on the grass, some in chairs, and some even on blankets. I made my own brooch bouquet, I wore sandals, and we had four special people say “blessings” to us, one about love from my mom, and the other three based on our common interests of dancing, the outdoors…and travel. Beth Whitman, of Wanderlust and Lipstick, read this blessing to us, followed by the above travel-marriage quote from John Steinbeck:

“As you travel through life together, as you depart down new or familiar roads, whether you get off the beaten path, take the roads less traveled, or visit all the touristy places, may you remember that life is about the journey, not the destination.”

Mukilteo Lighthouse Ferry


Even when a ferry blew its horn right in the middle of my husband’s niece singing “Love Me Tender,” it just made our wedding that much more fun. Our wedding at Mukilteo Lighthouse was perfect.

 

Lighthouse Mukilteo


Mukilteo Lighthouse was built and became operational in 1906, at a cost of $27,000, and is made of fir wood, which is significant because similar lighthouses, Lime Kiln Lighthouse on San Juan Island and Alki Lighthouse in West Seattle, were built of concrete. In 1927 electricity was installed at the Mukilteo Lighthouse, and it became fully automated in 1979. During the days of lightkeepers, “due to its location and amenities, the light station was considered a choice assignment that was often given to keepers as a reward for outstanding service.”

 

Mukilteo Lighthouse Washington


Mukilteo Lighthouse is located in Mukilteo State Park. “Native American Indians [the Snohomish] originally used the land in this area as a site for a camp during the winter months. In fact, Mukilteo is a local Indian word for ‘good place for camping.’” Next to the lighthouse, there are two keepers’ houses, a small museum with exhibits, photographs and information, and a gift shop. In the park there is a beach, picnic grounds, a playground, and a boat launch.

 

Mukilteo Lighthouse


When the Mukilteo Lighthouse began allowing weddings, “according to volunteers, not one of the first hundred performed at the lighthouse was rained on. There was rain before or after, but never on the actual ceremony.” Now I don’t know what number wedding we were, and how many weddings have been rained on after that first hundred, but we did not have a single drop!

 

Mukilteo Lighthouse Views Puget Sound


And when our ceremony was over, our guests got to go into the lighthouse to climb the 36 stairs of the 38-foot tall tower, for not only a tour, but also to see the beautiful views.

I also designed our Thank You cards to include a picture of the Mukilteo Lighthouse.

Sweet Travels!

Information and quotes in the blog from:
Mukilteo Historical Society
Lighthouse Friends-Mukilteo

If you are interested in getting married at Mukilteo Lighthouse, here is the link:

City of Mukilteo

Links to my previous blogs on lighthouses:

Lighthouses of the Oregon Coast

Lighthouses of the San Juan Islands: Patos Island and Turn Point

Lighthouses of the San Juan Islands: Burrows Island, Cattle Point, and Lime Kiln

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