The Lopez Walkabout is an annual hike the full length of Lopez Island over a weekend in September. In 2019 we held out 7th Walkabout the weekend of September 21/22. On the Walkabout we stay off the roadways as much as possible crossing public and private (with permission) lands. It is a private event open to members (anyone can be a member - just sign up below.) We hike through woods and pastures in groups over two days. One group does it in one day.
Our hope is that we are able to demonstrate the benefits of trails connecting our island. To that end, in 2018 the route from the Ferry to the Village was opened to the public for a period of 30 days. Property owners and walkers rated this Trail Trial as “strongly positive.” We hope to consolidate the trial into a permanent route in the near future. If you are interested in becoming a Lopez Trails member, please sign up below.
On our first hike, in 2013, just under 30 intrepid hikers started from the Ferry Landing and hiked across private lands, public parks, conservation lands, commercial lands, easements and driveways; through the Village to the School, into Lopez Hill, down Lopez Sound Road (where you can’t drive on it), on roadways and beaches all the way to the southern shore.
And again in 2014 and 2015, around 75 hikers in three groups made the same trek. One group started from the North, a second from the South. They met at the end of the first day by the School and then had a wonderful party and then continued to the finish on the second day. A third group hiked the entire Walkabout route in one day. Rain dampened the numbers in 2016, but not the enthusiasm. We had our usual numbers again in 2017 and 2018.
The Walkabout is one approach to demonstrating the benefits of a network of interconnecting trails on Lopez. We hope that over time, residents will come to accept access thru private and other properties for the purpose of walking, biking, and riding throughout Lopez. Many other countries allow this access. We think Lopez is an ideal place to build trails for our community to share.