Odlin South - Lopez Island

San Juan County acquires 100 acre Odlin South from WA DNR

After a persistent year-long effort by San Juan County, the Odlin South property sale was approved by the WA Board of Natural Resources on December 5, 2017. Council members Jamie Stephens and Rick Hughes, along with County Manager Mike Thomas, made the trip to Olympia to testify in support of the sale to the County. The 100-acre Odlin South property will now become a permanent part of the County’s Park system when the County reimburses the State $194,000 for the remaining fair market value of the property in January 2018. “This valuable addition to our county’s park system creates more places for people to enjoy low-impact recreation while preserving a unique natural environment,” said Jamie Stephens, San Juan County councilmember.

The Odlin South property contains important ecological and wildlife habitat features, including an eagle and osprey nest, and its immediate proximity to the 80 acre Odlin County Park provides potential for easily accessible trails with possible connection to the Fisherman Bay community trail.

Many Lopez residents supported the initiative to save the property from possible development and to gain permanent public ownership by the County. Beginning in 2011, WA DNR entered into a 50 year lease with the County for Odlin South, with management responsibility assigned to the Parks, Recreation and Fair Department. During 2015 and 2017 County Parks and the Parks & Recreation Commission developed the Odlin South Management and Stewardship Plan. Along with gathering resident input, the planning process included an ecological assessment of the property, development of management and stewardship goals and objectives, and an action plan.

The relatively flat topography and mosaic of high quality wetland systems, along with a large aspen grove, old growth trees and large snags, Odlin South has a rich environment for wildlife.

Special thanks to Hawk and Heather Arps, Russel Barsh, Lincoln Bormann, Tom Cowen, Nancy Huber, Madrona Murphy, Bob Myhr, Ann Palmer, Kevin Ranker, Scott Rozenbaum, Jamie Stephens, Nick Teague, Ruth Thompson-Kline, and Raiti Waerness.

SJC Parks and Recreation issue final Odlin South Management and Stewardship Plan (updated December 5, 2017)

The Final Management and Stewardship Plan and Appendix A Ecological Assessment for Odlin South are now available for viewing. Thanks to all who took the time to review this document and submit your thoughts. 

The San Juan County Parks & Recreation Commission also thanks Lopez Island residents for their participation in discussing the draft plan and sharing their comments at the June 22, 2017 Commimssion meeting at Odlin County Park.

Keep an eye on this page as updates arise!

Odlin South 3

San Juan County entered into a 50-year lease with the WA Department of Natural Resources for this 100-acre parcel in 2011. The County is investigating full acquisition, keeping it in public ownership for recreation and natural resource conservation in perpetuity. The PRC would like to hear your ideas about planning for development, conservation, and the scope of recreational uses.

An ecological assessment of Odlin South

In 2011, San Juan County entered into a 50-year lease with the Department of Natural Resources for the 100 acre Lopez Island property known as Odin South. This land neighbors Odlin County Park, already in the Parks & Fair Department inventory. This lease stipulates use for public benefit such as fish and wildlife habitat, open space, or recreation, or any combination of these uses.

The County holds the right to purchase the residual value of the fee interest to accept a land transfer at fair market value, and there is some local support for this purchase. Acquisition of this rich parcel is targeted for 2017.

A recent ecological assessment (Rozewood Environmental Services, Inc.) reports a seasonal stream that bisects the mostly forested property and that several wetlands are present. Douglas fir dominates the property, and there are some stands of Sitka spruce, western white pine, and Noble fir. An outstanding quaking aspen population resides here, with some specimens larger than 30 inches dbh.

The property also features an extraordinary dense understory comprised of salal, oceanspray, salmonberry, snowberry, and stinging nettle. The density of these plants make foot travel off the established trails very difficult. A number of birds, mammals, fish, and invertebrates also reside in this area.

Vicinity map

Read the report and learn more about this project:

Odlin South property ecological assessment (PDF)

Odlin South property ecological assessment Slideshow (PPT)

Future Updates on the Project

If you would like to receive updates about this project, please e-mail us at parks@sanjuanco.com; please put “Odlin South notification, please” in the subject line. Or, you can sign up for specific Parks related notifications on the San Juan County website, http://www.sanjuanco.com/list.aspx.