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Whidbey Island
and The Legend of Deception Pass

Chapter Twenty-Six

Magnificent Deception Pass State Park

It is for the purpose of finding relief from this onerous position of toll ferry service, that the people of the Island organized the Deception Pass Bridge Association, and through the medium of this organization they appealed to the people of the state, and particularly to the Legislators for relief through the construction of a vehicular bridge across Deception Pass.

The highway bridge would be beneficial to Whidbey Island. In a broader sense it would be of widespread interest and practical value to the whole state of Washington, for it would connect the two parts of Deception Pass State Park, thus making more available to the people of the whole state many miles of saltwater beaches and one of the most scenic regions in the Northwest. Deception Pass has been described as one of Nature's most magnificent gifts of scenery.

The proposed bridge would have a setting or base of solid rock and would span the pass at a height of about 150 feet above high tide. The longest span would be about 400 feet. Beneath the bridge would be a panorama of whirlpools and swirling tides, the joy and fear of venturesome yachtsmen.

The approaches to the bridge from north and south would be through the wooded areas of Deception Pass State Park, consisting of 1,986 acres, the second largest of Washington's state parks. Its beaches, lakes and forests afford recreational opportunities for tens of thousands. Its adjacent salt waters and freshwater lakes abound in fishes of great variety. Some of its more than ten miles of shoreline is at times swept by the storm-tossed waters of the Straits of Juan de Fuca rolling in from the Pacific, while its inner harbors are glasslike as a mill pond in the quiet of a summer's twilight.

This magnificent Deception Pass State Park is open to the public at all times, and thousands of people visit it each year. Nowhere else can such variety of out-of-door life be enjoyed by the people of a state!

Deception Pass State Park was ceded to the State of Washington through an Act of Congress (H.R. 9235. 67th Congress. First Session-passed March 16, 1922, and signed by President Warren G. Harding). The Deception Pass Bridge Association was organized by the people of Island County for the purpose of procuring the construction of a bridge across Deception Pass.

George Morris Post, American Legion, preceded the Association in sponsoring the bridge.

The American Legion district conference unanimously passed resolutions endorsing the bridge.

The proposed bridge would serve as an important link between the Pacific Highway, on the east side of Puget Sound, and the Olympic Highway, on the west side of the Sound—a shortcut between Jefferson and Clallam Counties on the west side and Island, Skagit, Whatcom and Snohomish Counties on the east side. The existing laws of the State of Washington do not permit the construction of a toll bridge by private capital. The State should build the bridge or, by proper legislation, permit private capital to do so.

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