WWII Gun Emplacements Once Protected Puget Sound and Seattle

The Army had plans in place to upgrade the Puget Sound harbor defenses when the Japanese attacked Pearl
Harbor on December 7, 1941. The attack prompted a feverish scramble to implement those WWII plans.

Fort Ebey was constructed from 1942 to 1944. It overlooked the Straight of Juan de Fuca and the open Pacific
Ocean. It was the first of a series of defensive positions that also included forts Casey, Worden and
Flagler, also on Puget Sound.

One of the gun turret foundations

One of the two gun turret foundations that still look over Puget Sound

Historic Fort Ebey State Park on Widbey Island is home to the remains of Battery 248 of the Coast Artillery
Regiment of the Washington National Guard. The guns are gone, having been melted down for scrap at the end
of the war. What remains, however, are the two circular gun emplacements and the supporting large concrete
bunker where ammunition, powder bags, and other equipment was stored.

The bunker is open to the public. A flashlight is a good companion if you venture into the bunker, as the
rooms are not provided with any lights. You will see the massive steel doors on the powder rooms as well
as the concrete pads where the three large generators were placed.

In front of the bunker towards the edge of the steep cliff you will see the forward observation bunker. A
narrow slit provided a panoramic view of the waters. No ships could enter the Sound without being spotted.

Forward observation post

Forward observation post

Date on the main bunker entrance

Date on the main bunker entrance

The main armament of the fort was provided by two guns on swivel turrets. These guns fired a 108 pound
shell with a range of 15 miles. The 26 man gun crews could fire a round every 12 seconds.

Take a step back in time with a visit to Fort Ebey State Park. Walk where the artillerymen walked. Explore
the bunker. Stand near the forward observation position and imagine being on the lookout for enemy ships
trying to invade the Puget Sound.

Day passes are only $10, with a yearly pass available for $30. More information about Fort Ebey State Park may be found at the park website.

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Bridge over Deception Pass

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This is the view from the bridge over Deception Pass. You are looking west through the pass and across the Straight of Juan de Fuca. The road runs south onto Whidbey Island from Fidalgo Island. This northern route to Whidbey Island avoids the Ferry at Mukilteo, but takes a lot longer with more miles when coming from Seattle.

 

Austin and his silver salmon

Today a trip to the Mukilteo Lighthouse park in Mukilteo, Washington gave us the chance to see some beautiful scenery, the Whidbey Island Ferry, and to meet a nice young man with a couple of very nice fish.

Austin's catch of the day

Austin’s catch of the day

Austin Edmison was kind enough to show us the two silver salmon that he had just caught. He had just pulled his boat out of the water and had begun to clean the fish. He explained to me that the name silver salmon is a local term for coho salmon, the real name for the fish. Austin said his catches today weighed in about nine and six pounds. He also shared the news that he is the proud father of an eight week old baby girl! Congratulations to Austin and his family.

Meeting nice people like Austin make our journeys and adventures worth every minute.