On the third day of our voyage we headed North west towards Reid Harbor which lies on the South West side of Stewart Island. Stewart Island is the furthest most north west island in the San Juan chain. We were told by one of the locals that the island is home to about 28 families, although it appeared that there were a lot more than 28 houses. I am assuming that many of those are strictly vacation homes.
After securing Bell Vie Brady and I made our way to the aft end of the dinghy as Ryann rowed us to shore. We decided to take the short hike across the island to check out the old school house and the Turn Point Light Station.
The hike was pleasant, the road was well maintained and the weather was perfect for it. I wasn’t expecting as many hills, but nothing was overly strenuous. We arrived at the old one room school house in the early afternoon. The school house is now a museum open to the public and a new building has been erected and is home to two students who reside on the island.
The island has no stores but some souvenirs are for sale out of a few wagons located along the side of the road. All the merchandise has envelopes attached to it and is an honor based pay system. Turn Point Light Station also sells souvenirs out of the museum but is only open during the day through the summer months.
I would absolutely love to spend some additional time exploring this island. I would enjoy talking to the locals, but I get the impression that it might be a bit hard. There are no stores, bars, restaurants, or any other places other than the two public parks that you might have the chance to bump into anyone at. I can only assume that these people are not completely immersed in living in solitude and do socialize with each other. But to get some idea of what it is like to live someplace where your only means of returning to civilization requires either a boat or airplane fascinates me.