Bainbridge Island Swamp Lake

Last Sunday Barb and I went for a hike on Bainbridge Island. We were meeting friends from the peninsula and as this is about halfway between our homes and them liking the outdoors as much as we did we decided to go on a short hike through the woods to Gazzam Lake.

We planned to leave at 8:30 AM to catch the 9:35 ferry but we were ready to go at 8:20 and left early. We arrived at the ferry dock, paid for our ticket, and were told we were going to be on the 8:45 ferry. Essentially we arrived just a few minutes before it was scheduled to leave and just had to drive onto the ferry and it took off. Excellent timing! The only problem was we were now 50 minutes early to meet our friends.

The directions we had weren’t the best and with our share of mistakes we made a total of four u-turns before we found our way there. We then went back into town to look around some and found something I had never heard of before. It was a self-serve dog wash:


We wandered around a bit then returned to the trailhead to meet our friends. After they arrived we looked at the map before we started hiking. The lake had the symbol for wetlands all around it and I quipped, “It should be called Swamp Lake.”

We took off down the trail and had a pleasant walk through the woods and arrived at where the map and signs indicated Gazzam Lake:


Yup. It’s not much more than a swamp.

Someone else came along and we chatted with her for a while and she told us the lake was usually had a lot more water in it. Perhaps eight or ten feet more. That would have made a difference alright but I’m not sure it change my preferred name of it.

We continued our hike to Close Beach. Except for the haze from the distant forest fires it was much nicer there:



We sat down in the shade on a log with our friends and talked for a long time. We then went into town, found a place to have lunch with them, and talked for another 45 minutes or so.

We left in what we thought was time enough to get back home and have dinner with Max at the usual time but found the line to get on the ferry was 1.2 miles long. That only added an hour so it wasn’t as bad as we thought it might be but still we were late getting home. Next time we’ll budget more time for the return ferry trip if it is on a Sunday afternoon.