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State parks to begin mooring buoy repair project throughout Puget Sound

by Washington State Parks 14 Jul 10:44 PDT
State parks to begin mooring buoy repair project throughout Puget Sound © Washington State Parks

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission will begin contracted mooring buoy repair work in the San Juan Islands beginning Monday, July 12th to repair approximately 60 buoys that are currently unsatisfactory and unusable.

The months-long maintenance project will service salvageable state-owned, public mooring buoys to ensure they are in top condition for boaters.

State Parks has recently assessed its 256 saltwater mooring buoys throughout Western Washington waters and while 53 were found to be initially unserviceable, approximately 203 will be completely replaced with new and improved buoy and anchor systems by late fall. Any buoys that cannot be repaired will be included in a future replacement effort- while also looking at other methods of providing needed tie-up capacity for vessels.

State Parks staff, in collaboration with groups such as the Recreational Boating Association of Washington (RBAW), are currently scoping a more extensive effort to improve moorage opportunities. Consultations with tribal governments, permit authorities and others will also unfold later this year.

Repair work will begin in July at the following north Puget Sound locations:

  • July 12: Stuart Island Marine State Park - Reid Harbor
  • July 13: Spencer Spit State Park
  • July 15: Stuart Island Marine State Park - Prevost Harbor
  • July 19: Matia Island Marine State Park and Patos Island Marine State Park
  • July 20: Sucia Island Marine State Park and Echo Bay

Buoy repair work will continue in mid to late August in the south Puget Sound area. Inspection of all State Park buoys on a biennial basis is planned under a new five-year on-call contract with Jen Jay, Inc., a commercial diving and environmental consulting company servicing the Puget Sound area.

The current repair work schedule is weather dependent and subject to change. Boaters should be cautious of repair divers in the area and allow extra space around the buoys under repair. For additional mooring buoy repair work schedule updates and future work to improve mooring opportunities, visit website.

Using mooring buoys is important to help protect sensitive eelgrass habitats from anchor impact. Each buoy is designed for a single vessel up to 45 feet in length. Boaters cannot raft or tie multiple boats together when using mooring buoys.

To report a damaged buoy, please contact our information center via email at or by phone at (360)-902-8844.

State parks are a top destination for cruising, sail and power boaters. Buoys are $15 per night and available on a first-come first-serve basis.

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