A Slough Cruise Proposal

By Bryan Lowe, Seattle Washington - USA

Enough with dreaming. Act. Join the Walter Mitty Action Committees first group trip planned for 2011. Adventure in the sloughs!

Perhaps adventure is the wrong word in this case, but this is certainly the stuff of dreams. The first Walter Mitty Action Committee ( outing offers a quiet escape from the stresses of the world.. from jobs.. bills.. and families. It’s a total immersion into the quiet and solitude of the brackish waters of Steamboat, Ebey, and Union Sloughs, the miles of winding waterways between Puget Sound and the Snohomish River. You’ll find the occasional jet ski or fisherman, but for the most part these sloughs will be ours alone, a true retreat.

I’ve spent close to a decade exploring these quiet backwaters and have found dozens and dozens of beautiful places to stop, relax, read or cook a meal. It’s safe. It’s isolated. It’s beautiful, in a brackish slough sort of way!

So how about we try to get a good dozen boats together or so? We could meet at the launch ramp and make our way into the sloughs. We’d spend the first day together getting to know the sloughs, then spend a night clustered in a bend in the slough. The next two days or so we’d head off on our own each morning, only meeting up again for dinner… perhaps a group effort with each boat providing a portion of the meal. Drinks? Let’s promise not to go crazy, as this is a retreat, not a party. A beer or two.. or some wine? Sure. If you’d like more, perhaps this isn’t the outing for you.

This is the boat I’ll be using:

Boats could be smaller without problem, but I wouldn't recommend a boat that was much bigger.

What will you need?

First, you'll need a boat with a shallow draft. The sloughs can get pretty thin in some places when the tide goes out.

You'll need protection from the weather, though it is usually pretty mild.

A small boat, even a very small boat, would be fine here. I saw a Pelican sailboat once that had a tent that covered the open hull. That sort of thing would be fine, though you need a motor here, as there won't be much wind. and the sloughs can be narrow. An electric motor is fine, so long as you have several large batteries.


The dates are being firmed up, but let's shoot for the second weekend in September, with a Friday and a Monday thrown in for good measure.

So.. are you interested?

Learn more about this sort of boating and about this waterway at and



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