From Lilliwaup to Hama Hama, the Olympic Peninsula’s most mispronounced words


The area’s tourism promoters have produced a handy guide to help out-of-towners sound like locals.

It’ll help your East Coast and California friends (and maybe even you) avoid several common verbal blunders. At all costs, you want to avoid referring to a certain north peninsula town as ‘See-kwim.’ Say ‘geoduck’ the way it’s spelled and you might hear a record scratch and all conversation around you suddenly halt.

Photo: Explore Hood Canal
Photo: Explore Hood Canal

I ticked through the Explore Hood Canal list with the confidence of a fourth-generation Kitsaper. I admit, though, I was tripped up by Twanoh. I have always pronounced it ‘Twah-no,’ and I’ve heard people in the state parks system, which includes Twanoh State Park, pronounce it the same way.

According to the guide, Twanoh has a few extra vowels that are invisible in the written word. By Explore Hood Canal’s reckoning, my two-syllable pronunciation of ‘Tu-wa-nu-ho’ is two syllables short.

There’s also debate about the proper pronunciation of Dosewallips. I say it – and will always say it – ‘Dosey-wall-ips.’ The tourism guide agrees. But Exotic Hikes, a guide to Olympic National Park, suggests ‘Dose-wall-lips’ might be the right way. And if you want to really want to go back to the source, you might call it ‘Dos-wail-opsh.’

The river Hamma Hamma is easy to pronounce, but what about the oyster and oyster company Hama Hama? Trimming a few m’s apparently changes pronunciation quite a bit.

You can find the Explore Hood Canal pronunciation list here.

Ever hear of Place of Salmon Park? Neither had its owner


There’s a small waterfront park on Dyes Inlet that’s so hidden away and forgotten that even its owner didn’t know it existed.

According to property records, the Kitsap County Parks Department has owned the 2.6-acre Chico Way property for eight years. Yet none of the department’s staff had heard of the property when I asked questions about it last week. It doesn’t appear on their property inventory list or on parks department maps. There are no signs at the site identifying it as a public park.

Parcel map showing park's outline in green.
Parcel map showing park’s outline in green.

“None of us were around when this was (acquired),” Parks Director Jim Dunwiddie said after consulting with his staff. “I asked around and said ‘there’s a property there – what was the thought on it? Why do we have it?’ People here thought maybe it was supposed to be a preserve or for fishing.”

Both uses would be a good match for the property. Covered in alder, blackberry and ivy, it sits near the mouth of Chico Creek, the most productive salmon stream in the county. The creek is a popular spot for salmon watchers and salmon anglers, who gather around the mouth every fall to hook returning chum.

I ran into a few fishermen when I visited the property the other day. They were casting near the property’s tidelands but didn’t know about the park. They had been using the Kittyhawk Drive roadend, on the other side of the creek, to park and get to the beach. There were four vehicles packed into the roadend on my last check in.


The park is steeply sloped but flattens out near the creek’s mouth. There’s no parking, but the shoulder on Chico Way is wide enough for a few cars. Chico Creek Lane runs through the property before dead-ending at the creek. A deer path leads to the beach and 500 feet of parks department-owned shoreline.

My interest in the property was piqued by a local trails advocate who has been scouting the area for a possible bike route. In his research, he thought he saw a reference to a county park on Chico Way. I’ve become pretty familiar with the county parks system and know of only one Chico Way park, but it’s about a mile to the south of the area he described.

Chico Creek Lane.
Chico Creek Lane.

Dunwiddie said he has no plans for the park because, well, he didn’t know it existed until now.

The property’s slope limits development options. The upper section, along Chico Way, could be an ideal spot for a viewing platform. It’s quite a vantage point, overlooking the creek, estuary and Erlands Point, with Silverdale and Windy Point visible across the inlet.

On the property’s southeast side is a small parcel owned by the Suquamish Tribe. The tribe also owns the tidelands fronting the park. The tidelands get daily use by anglers thanks to an arrangement in which the Kitsap Poggie Club supplies a portable toilet at the Kittyhawk road end and keeps the place tidy.

To the north of the property is a private home. The brush is low at the property line but don’t mistake this for a trail. There’s a small marker here that hints at how the property came under the parks department’s ownership. It reads “Funding Provided By the Aquatic Lands Enhancement Account” and identifies a couple state agencies. Not the most informative sign, but it gave me a hint about how this property came under parks department ownership.


Nearly a decade ago, Kitsap County, the Suquamish Tribe and at least three state agencies teamed up to purchase land and restore the creek mouth and estuary. It was a big project that eventually led to the removal of a concrete culvert and the breaking up of Kittyhawk Drive.


“As a direct result of this project, Kitsap County was able to seek funds to purchase the 1.1 acre waterfront parcel to add to the county parks system,” a 2007 project description states.

I guess no one bothered to let the parks system’s managers know they had a new park. Or maybe parks managers forgot about it.

Either way, property records clearly name “Kitsap County Parks & Rec” as the owner. Rather than 1.1 acres, as was mentioned above, the park is listed as 2.58 acres in property records. The December 2007 sale price is listed as $300,000.

Oh, and it even has a name. “Place of Salmon County Park” is how it’s identified in a vegetation map tucked in those forgotten documents from the not-so-distant past.

Getting there: The best place to park is along Chico Way, just north of the Highway 3 offramp. To get to the water, walk down the newly-blacktopped Chico Creek Lane and head left through a gap in the brush at the bottom of the slope.

Photos: Tristan Baurick/Kitsap Sun

Olympic Discovery Trail bridge replacement underway

The two pieces of the Olympic Discovery Trail will soon be rejoined.

Work is underway to replace the Dungeness River Railroad Bridge’s long wooden trestle, which was damaged by high river flows in February. The span has been closed ever since. Cyclists and other trail users have had to take a 3-mile detour, including a stretch along busy Highway 101, to get to the other side.

The damaged trestle in February. Tristan Baurick/Kitsap Sun
The damaged trestle in February. Tristan Baurick/Kitsap Sun

Near Sequim, the bridge is part of a 30-mile paved trail section that gets about 10,000 monthly users during summers.

The trestle is expected to reopen late next month.

The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe owns the bridge and the 28-acre Railroad Bridge Park surrounding it. The tribe was quick to gather together $1.53 million in state and federal grants and tribal funding to pay for the project.

The project involves removing 38 creosote-treated pilings, which will improve the river’s salmon habitat, and installing prefabricated bridge sections made of steel and other long-lasting materials, according to the tribe.

You can watch some of the work in the above video by Jay Cline.

The Jamestown S’Klallams were, by the way, the first tribe in the nation to receive ‘bicycle friendly’ designation from the League of American Bicyclists. The designation was largely in recognition of the tribe’s support for the ODT. More on that here.

And for more about the trestle damage, head over to this story.

Check out the Olympic Discovery Trail’s website here.


Give a listen to the Washington State Parks jingle

Here’s an advance listen to the new official jingle commissioned for Washington State Parks. Expect to hear it as part of a new push to market the state parks system.

“There’s beauty all around, from the Columbia Gorge to Puget Sound,” goes the poppy-country ditty, entitled “Embrace Your Nature.”

A sharp-eared editor in the Kitsap Sun newsroom noticed it sounds a bit like the Smokey and the Bandit theme song. For comparison, head here.

Ask your doctor if Nature is right for you

A recent Stanford University study suggests that hanging out in nature may boost mental health.

Published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, the study found that people who walked for 90 minutes in a natural area, as opposed to those who walked in a high-traffic urban setting, showed decreased activity in a region of the brain associated with depression.

You can read the study here.

Or, you can watch a funny video (above) that basically says the same thing.

The spoof on prescription drug commercials makes a compelling case that Nature (in this case, the name of a fake drug) can improve your health, well-being and may make you “question what the (expletive) you’re doing with your life.”

Beware, side effects can include “spontaneous euphoria, taking things less seriously and being in a good mood for no apparent reason.”

The three fastest journalists in Kitsap

David Nelson, Chris Henry and Andy Binion.
David Nelson, Chris Henry and Andy Binion.

A team made up of Kitsap Sun journalists managed a respectable showing at last weekend’s Wilder Hare Triathlon in Hansville.

Coming in 16th place didn’t earn the shiny trophy, but hey, Team Fit2Print (get it?) did beat about two-thirds of the competition.

Binion high-fiving Nelson at the finish line.
Binion high-fiving Nelson at the finish line.

Sun editor-in-chief and marathoner David Nelson handled the the 10 K route with ease, placing second overall. Fresh off a Portland-to-San Francisco bike ride, cops and courts reporter Andy Binion had little problem with the race’s hilly 28-mile ride. South Kitsap and education reporter Chris Henry was the team’s swimmer. Her route was a one mile (two laps) around chilly Buck Lake.

Andy and Chris give much of the credit to David, and not just because he’s their boss.

“David crushed it, coming in second with a really good time,” Chris said. “He’s modest saying he was part of a team versus people who started the run after the bike and swim.”

Chris said the West Sound Triathlon Club pulled off a great event.

“They did a wonderful job. A lot of work, a lot of fun,” she said. “Between WSTC and the Kitsap TriBabes, I would say there is a very healthy (no pun intended) triathlon culture in Kitsap County. For me, a 60-year-old with a (mostly) desk job, it gives me incentive to do fun outdoor activities.”

For the full results, head over here.

Trail closure expanded near Olympic National Park wildfire


Olympic National Park is closing another section of the Queets River Trail due to the spreading Paradise Fire.

The fire, which is now nearly 2,400 acres, has reached Bob Creek, a landmark firefighters decided in June would trigger additional closures and heighten the firefighting response.

The expanded closure includes all areas east of Spruce Bottom on the Queets trail.

Firefighters are likely to increase helicopter water drops and the use of 3,000-gallon water tanks, which will be flown into remote areas of the fire area.

For more information about the fire, head over here.

Photo: Queets River, Olympic National Park.

How to get to Fudge Point

Fudge Point's 3,000 foot-long beach. Tristan Baurick/Kitsap Sun
Fudge Point’s 3,000-foot-long beach. Tristan Baurick/Kitsap Sun

My story about Washington State Parks’ plan for the Fudge Point property has elicited a few questions about how to get there.


The 141-acre property on Harstine Island is not yet an official state park but it is open to the public. No signs mark it as a state park property and there are no park amenities, such as parking, bathrooms, trash cans or running water. Basically, it’s a big undeveloped property with what park officials say is one of the best beaches in the region. Click here for a bunch of park planning documents on the property.

Before I give the directions, I want to note that the property’s use as a public park has been controversial with some folks in the neighborhood. They’re worried about traffic, trash, noise, fires, trespassing and other negative side effects that they say come with a state park. One reader told me this week that “No Trespassing” signs are cropping up like weeds in the area. Thankfully, all the readers of this blog are smart, considerate people so I don’t even have to mention that you should never litter, start illegal fires, trample nearby commercial shellfish beds or do anything that violates the rules of conduct at a state park.


OK, so to get there from Kitsap, head south on Highway 3. About 20 minutes after passing through Belfair, get ready to make a left on East Pickering Road. Take Pickering across the Harstine Island bridge and then take a right on South Island Drive. Take a left on Harstine Island Road and then a right on Ballow Road. Continue on Ballow a little more than a half mile. Where Ballow veers sharply to the left is where you should start looking for a spot on the roadside to park.

As I mentioned above, Fudge Point has absolutely no parking. Park staff have told me you can park along the road but you have to be careful about driveways and the sensitivities of nearby property owners.

In the road’s bend  (opposite from a clear cut) are two side-by-side driveways. The driveway on the rightGate is the access road into the Fudge Point property. The other driveway (without a gate) is private. So remember: no gate = stay out. Gate = go right in. The gate is locked and no motorized vehicles are allowed on the park property. The driveway, actually a former logging road, is about a mile long. You can walk it,  or better yet, mountain bike it. The above map shows the logging road’s route in yellow.

At the beach you can enjoy a 3,000-foot-long stretch of sand, a lagoon rich in wildlife and some great views of the Key Peninsula and Mount Rainier.

Image courtesy of Washington State Parks

Take a virtual tour of P.O.’s Bay Street path

Reporter Chris Henry strapped on a GoPro and biked along Port Orchard’s waterfront to show the route of the Bay Street Pedestrian Path.

As you can see from the above video, the 1.5-mile-long route is mostly a plan at this point. There are two finished sections, but Chris had to join with vehicle traffic a few times and ride along a few narrow shoulder sections. Read more about her ride here.

The path has been in development for about five years. The completed route will run from the Annapolis ferry dock (where Chris starts her ride) to Port Orchard Marina Park. Recently, the state chipped in $3.5 million to help construct the east portion of the route.

Here’s Chris’ latest story on the path: Port Orchard’s Bay Path bridge work to start soon


Giant red squid washes up on Puget Sound beach

Two guys fishing for salmon north of Seattle came home with quite a fish tale. Make that a squid tale.

Brought in by the tide on Sunday morning was what might be a robust clubhooked squid. Dwellers of the deep, these real-life sea monsters rarely make their way into Puget Sound. When they do, they’re usually found dead like this one was. This may be due to the sound’s shallower depths, higher temperatures and lower salinity. Basically, the squids need it cold, dark and salty.

The squid, which was found on Shoreline’s Richmond Beach, was partially eaten and was missing at least one tentacle. It was just under 7 feet long and was estimated to be about 65 lbs.

For more about clubhooked squids, read this:

Click below to see a few more squid photos from the Beam Reach school’s Facebook page

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