This blog covers trips from the book and other favorites. Contact Rob in Seattle: or 206-465-7167


Gunkholing the Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands - The Book Series

My favorite guides for exploring Puget Sound and the San Juans (aside from my own) are the out of print Gunkholing series by Jo Bailey and Carl Nyberg. And I have to admit, Gunkholing is my favorite words aside from clapotis.  

Each have detailed info on everything you'll see while cruising (or paddling) in each of those areas, from navigational info, charts, hazards, interesting locals, natural history, marine life, city/towns to interesting sights. Much of the info doesn't date, so the books remain timeless as your travelling guide.  

What is Gunkholing? "Cruising in sheltered waters and anchoring every night." (from the books)

The book series includes - Gunkholing in.. South Puget Sound, the San Juans, the Gulf Islands and an older version I came across says.. the Salish Sea.  You'll come across several versions as most looks like were self published.  

The guides can be found on Amazon, at Powell's Books in Portland and SeaOcean Books in Seattle.  Amazon has a few for $99 while the SeaOcean copies were pretty beat up and cheap (last time I was there). I usually pick up a few when I find them as they're great gifts for paddling and mariners alike. 

My next favorite but also out of print guides are Marge and Ted Mueller's Afoot and Afloot series by Mountaineers Books. There's several of these still on book store shelves as new.  

Learn more about my book Kayaking Puget Sound and the San Juans, 60 Trips. I also offer SUP and Kayak lessons available throughout the year at Salmon Bay Paddle. Questions about paddling on the Salish Sea, give me a holler anytime at or 206-465-7167

Support the Washington Water Trails Association and the Cascadia Marine Trail. The wwta works to create and protect access for paddlers on Puget Sound as well as provide an extensive network of over 60 paddle-in camping sites -


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