About the Book
Maxwelton Beach buttresses the south shore of Useless Bay looking across Admiralty Inlet to an unobstructed panorama of the Olympic Mountains. The broad sands inspired a park that attracts families throughout the year. Rafts of driftwood line the shore, a jumble of logs that shift with the tides and the storms. Ocean-going ships parade past, reminders that the water is an extension of the Pacific Ocean.
The location was appealing enough to be the site of one of Whidbey Island?s original villages, and a port of sorts from a time before ferries and docks. As the island grew, boats found friendlier docks and the busy town of Maxwelton became a refuge for vacations and retirements. Playfully noisy families define the summer. Quiet individuals seeking solitude define the winter.
Since the glaciers retreated, the shoreline has been the destination for birds and fish, who disregard property markers. Wander the sand for curious arrivals delivered by the waves. Visit at sunset for colors and dramas in the light reflected off clouds that travelled thousands of miles to finally reach North America.
My few visits spread across twelve months are one small slice of a very long story, yet more than a single Saturday visit and therefore tell more of a tale. Visit it yourself and know that there is much more for you to see than I have shown. I hope you enjoy it all.
These photos are part of an extended series of Twelve Month chronicles on Whidbey Island.
In addition to being a nature photographer, Tom Trimbath is the author of the series of nature essays Twelve Months at Barclay Lake, Twelve Months at Lake Valhalla, and Twelve Months at Merritt Lake, and the cultural essay Just Keep Pedaling (stories learned from bicycling across America). He is also the author of Dream. Invest. Live., a description of his frugal approach to personal finance. Recently he wrote two more books: a scifi novel, Firewatcher; and a book about tea, Kettle Pot Cup.