San Juan County
San Juan Island
W. Valley Rd.
Every day Dawn - Dusk
If you’re in the mood for a healthy hill climb with a touch of history, the Mount Young Trail might interest you. The trail starts at the British Camp parking lot and runs directly up Mount Young, the hill over looking Garrison Bay. It’s a fairly short hike but also strenuous, so be prepared to stretch your legs.
The first part of the trail is a forest service road that runs straight up through the young forest surrounding British Camp. After about 10 minutes, walkers break out into the dry meadows that cover the upper hillside. From there it’s a matter of yards to the English cemetery, a small plot surrounded by a picket fence. A handful of graves mark the dead of the British Royal Marine Light Infantry (and one civilian), mostly from the 1860s. While there are some shady places to rest with a few openings to catch glimpses of the bay, the real view is at the top.
From there, prepare to sweat off a few calories: it’s a 1/4-mile climb and steep. The trail zig-zags in and out of forest on switchbacks to the crest, a small plateau on the side of the hill. The hiker’s reward is a sweeping eastern view of the islands, including Henry, Pearl and Spieden Islands. Also visible to the southeast are the Olympics, one of the best views of that range from the San Juans. This is not to mention an eagle's-eye view of San Juan and Garrison Bay.
It is interesting to note that from 1860 to 1872 the Royal Marines enjoyed the view and trail when they were stationed at British camp. One can only wonder how different it was back then.
Take Beaverton Valley Road to West Valley Road until you come to British Camp. Park here and head east out of the parking lot.
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San Juan Islands