Ahoy Mates, This year the Commodore’s Cruise will take us to Roche Harbor in June.   

You might wonder:  Why in June?

Initially, it seemed to me that it should be very easy to choose both a date and a destination for the Commodore’s Cruise.  However, as my time to decide approached I found it not so easy to choose.  I had such a plethora of really great choices that I felt confused.  Consequently, I refocused and started asking questions and getting feedback from other members who had much more experience and knew much more on the subject of the Commodore’s Cruise than I did. 

On Lopez Island and around our archipelago we are blessed with many wonderful cruise opportunities, particularly from June through September.  One thing I learned from speaking with other members is that historically, until Covid, the Commodore’s Cruise was done in June.  The reasoning for going in June was that doing the cruise early in the season gave members an opportunity to check out their boats, engines, sails, gear, crew, etc., before heading out for the big summer cruise.  In other words, it doubled as a Shakedown cruise.  

That made good sense to me.  Consequently, we are back to doing the Commodore’s Cruise in June this year.

Why Roche Harbor?

-Location:  I primarily chose Roche Harbor Resort & Marina because it is located close enough to Lopez Island that it is easily accessible for both power boaters and sailors.  Moreover, I wanted it to be reasonably close Lopez because a number of our club sailors will have just done a trip to Victoria June 7-9 to watch the start of the R2AK (Race to Alaska).  

-First-Class Marina:  The Roche Harbor Marina is one of the best in the Northwest, with modern amenities and services that carter to the needs of boats and sailboats of all sizes.  The marina is equipped with a floating and roving pump-out station, fuel dock, shore power and water, making it a convenient and comfortable place for docking. 

-Activities:  Roche Harbor Resort offers a wide range of activities for visitors including, hiking, biking, kayaking, fishing, and whale watching.  The resort also features several restaurants and bars, a spa, and a pool. 


Lunch and Dinner on Saturday, June 17

– Lunch at Wescott Bay Shellfish Co 

I have a 1 PM reservation (currently for 8).  

  • go online to OpenTable.com to make your own reservation or 
  • let me know you would like to be added to the current reservation and if I get more than 8 requests I will try to get another table reserved
  • located in Westcott Bay – take your dinghy or walk the 1.9 miles from the Roche Harbor Marina which makes it a 35 to 40 minute walk
  • Dinner at McMillin’s Dining Room

I have a 7 PM reservation (currently for 10).

  • call or go online and make your own dinner reservation or
  • let me know you would like to be added to the current reservation and if get more than 10 requests I will try to get another table reserved  
  • Other dining alternatives:

Madrona Bar & Grill is an inviting neighbor bistro located on the water in the heart of historic Roche Harbor Village, featuring floor to ceiling windows with a spectacular views of the marina, formal gardens, and breathtaking sunsets.  

LIme Kiln Cafe features a wide variety of classic entrees and sides.  The cafe serves breakfast in the morning and lunch in the afternoon making it a perfect place to dine out anytime with a more casual, counter-style service. 

Beechtree Espresso serves all of the usual favorite coffee preparations along with a wide variety of indulgent pastries and muffins.  Top it all off with a full line of ice cream  including classic and creative flavors.

Resort Accommodations

  • Historic McMillan Suites
  • Hotel De Haro
  • Quarryman Hall
  • Historic Cottages
  • Condos
  • Village Homes

Every accommodation is within a few minutes walk of all resort amenities and include:

  • Complimentary wi-fi (except for the Historic cottages)
  • Free parking
  • Access to tennis, pickleball and bocce ball courts, pool, trails
  • Guest services transportation within the resort

Resort Amenities 

Outdoor heated swimming pool

  • Tennis courts
  • Bocce courts (tournament anyone?)
  • Off-leash dog park
  • Outdoor sculpture park
  • Spa wellness boutique
  • Kayak rentals
  • Grocery Store
  • Walking and hiking trails (mausoleum, etc.)
  • Shopping at multiple shops
  • Airport or Float plane dock
  • Playground
  • Gardens

The Roche Harbor Disc Golf Course is a 1.3 mile walk (roughly 30 minutes) from the Resort located near the east end of the Roche Harbor airport.  If you have never heard of disc golf you might want to check it out.  It has evolved considerably in the 100 years since it was first invented and played by Steady Ed Hedrick – father of the modern-day Frisbee and inventor of the sport and game of disc golf.  It is played worldwide and in the US there are currently over 7,000 disc golf courses.  

Colors Ceremony at Roche Harbor:

A Roche Harbor tradition since 1957, the colors ceremony happens just before sunset each night during the summer.  The dock staff lowers the flags flags of Roche Harbor, Washington State, Great Britain, Canada and the United States while a song plays.  When the US flag comes down a cannon shot booms through the harbor.  

If you plan to join this Commodore’s Cruise –

– Please get in touch with me and let me know.

– Please go to the following link to make your moorage reservation now.  As you may know, Roche Harbor is very busy in the summer months.  Let the marina know that you are part of the Lopez Island Yacht Club Commodore’s Cruise:

(If you have any problems getting your reservation confirmed online, call the marina office and ask for Katie.)  

– Let me know if you would like to be added to my current dining reservation (I will try to accommodate – see above). 

There are many easy ways to get to Roche Harbor other than boating.  

  • Let me know if you are planning on going other than boating and staying in a resort accommodation.    
  • Let me know if you would like to attend, book a resort accommodation and arrange a ride over or back on somebody else’s boat.  
  • Finally, please contact me if you have any comments, questions or concerns about this cruise of for any further information about it.  


Commodore Jan

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