NWSF Partners with Landowners to Restore Part of Chuckanut Bay

NWSF partnered with shoreline landowners Patrice Clark and Bill Wright to help them remove the large breakwater at Clark’s Point in Bellingham. We started working with Patrice and Bill in 2015 when they approached us looking for solutions to restore the tidal flow within the small embayment on the north end of Chuckanut Bay. The project site sits within an approximately 71-acre conservation easement. The Clark family has been stewarding these lands for decades and have actively reforested the area and managed the site by removing derelict structures and invasive vegetation.

The breakwater was created in the late 1950s and expanded in the 1960s to create a boat basin for private boat moorage. The boat basin breakwater was constructed of large sandstone boulders, which were reportedly blasted from the adjacent cliff that comprises the western edge of the boat basin, and also by blasting a gap into the narrow sandstone peninsula that formed the eastern side of the basin.

American Construction removed 1,950 tons of rock from the site in November along with the remaining remnants of a small dock. Engineering and design was provided by Coastal Geologic Services.

We will continue to watch the site as it changes over the next few years, looking at the small patches of eelgrass that provide refuge and foraging for salmonids as well as crabs, shrimp, marine birds and other critters. Photos by Bob Morton.

The Northwest Straits Foundation, a Salish
Sea conservation organization, raises funds
to support locally-driven marine restoration,
stewardship and education programs.

Our award-winning projects in nearshore
habitat restoration and derelict gear removal
have restored the coastal environment in
Washington’s seven Northwestern counties.

seal of transparency 2018 Gold


Caroline Gibson Scholarship

Get Involved

We work alongside citizen volunteers to collect meaningful scientific data to better understand the health of our shorelines and the physical and biological responses to the shoreline restoration efforts.

What we do

We play a vital role in the Northwest Straits Initiative; leveraging funding for, and collaboration in, conservation and restoration projects that are important to our communities.

Our Impact 

We foster collaboration and participation to restore and protect marine resources of the Northwest Straits.

Acres of marine habitat restored

Volunteer hours

Derelict fishing nets removed

Community Engagement

Volunteers are our most valuable resource! Muddy boots, expert knowledge and boundless curiosity are intrinsic to the strong citizen science and marine stewardship that define the Northwest Straits Initiative. We love what we do, and anyone can participate.

Derelict Gear Program

By removing lost and abandoned crab pots, fishing nets, and other gear, our Derelict Fishing Gear program has helped restore more than 820 acres of precious marine environment, saving nearly 470,000 entangled animals annually.

Shore Friendly – Shoreline Landowner Program

Approximately 27% of our region’s shoreline is modified with armor. Reducing shoreline armoring is vital to restoring the health of the Northwest Strait’s ecosystem.

Beach & Nearshore Restoration

We’re improving nearshore habitat for salmon, bull trout, and forage fish, upgrading public access, and increasing the beach’s resilience to climate change.

Story Map

Thank You to Our Partners


Northwest Straits Foundation
1155 N State St Ste 400
Bellingham WA 98225
(360) 733-1725