Early winter birding on Puget Sound

Kitsap County residents can ring in the new year by joining the Port Townsend Marine Science Center for an early winter bird migration cruise to Protection Island or south toward Port Ludlow, weather depending, on Monday, December 31st.

The three-hour trip leaves from Port Townsend’s Point Hudson Marina at 1 p.m. This boat expedition, in collaboration with Puget Sound Express, is a great way to spend New Year’s Eve with family and friends. Cruises are aboard a comfortable, enclosed, heated motor-yacht.

“Our New Year’s Eve cruise is an annual tradition for many people giving everyone a chance to see lots of birds and wildlife. Since we have naturalists from the PTMSC on board, they’re familiar with local bird populations and marine mammals, providing excellent commentary,” said Anne Murphy, executive director for the PTMSC. “It’s a fun trip for all ages.”

The trip offers the opportunity for an idyllic natural science adventure, enabling people to gain a better understanding of Puget Sound's marine ecosystems and interrelationships which abound in these waters. If the weather is good, the cruise will go to Protection Island — a National Wildlife Refuge located at the mouth of Discovery Bay — or it may head south toward Port Ludlow to remain in protected waters if the weather is rough.

The New Year’s Eve cruise departs from Hudson Point Marina, in downtown Port Townsend, leaving at 1 p.m. and returning at 4 p.m. on Dec. 31st. Tickets are $55 per person ($50 for members of the PTMSC, Burke Museum, Audubon or the Washington Ornithological Society). Proceeds from the trip help to fund PTMSC programs.

Trips may include an additional stop at the Kilisut Harbor/Mystery Bay area (between Marrowstone and Indian Islands). On-board refreshments are available. For reservations, please call the Port Townsend Marine Science Center at (360) 385-5582 or 1 (800) 566-3932 or e-mail at for additional information.


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