Planning Your Trip to Hops on the Rock

Our friends on Orcas Island are hosting their first ever beer festival and we want everyone to be there! There's not a lot of time to plan your trip, so I've put together a one-stop-shop type of post to make getting your suds-soaked arses out there as easy as possible. It's true, you will have to make some decisions. Time to fire up those synapses and fire off a couple of good ol'-fashioned Google queries, designed to deliver you to the next best brewfest! Here's what you do:

  • Decide when you want to go and how long you want to stay. Visiting any of the San Juan Islands is a treat and, if you can, staying the weekend makes it seem like a mini vay-cay. Head out Friday, November 10th, after work or Saturday morning, whichever makes more sense for your schedule.
  • Find somewhere to stay if you're going to be there overnight. Click on the following links for options: Google results for "Eastsound, WA resort" and AirBnB. Just make sure to double-check your dates.
  • Make a ferry reservation. Because we live in Washington and we have to reserve things like ferries and campsites. Wah, wah. Anywho, play along and get that reservation, because they're still available right now and the longer you wait, the harder they'll be to pin down. And then you'll be left with the unenviable position of having to check in with the reservation gods two days prior to your preferred sail date, before 7am, to see if you can get on then, and that just sounds like work. Click on the image below to go to their reservation page. Note: making a reservation is not the same as paying your fare.
  • Pay your fare. Round trip pricing is $32.75 for a driver and vehicle under 14'. Each passenger is $13.50. You'll need a car to drive to the beer festival location, or an islander friend to pick you up. Here's the link:
  • Buy your Hops on the Rock tickets. Presale ends on November 4th. Use our discount code "whitewall" for 10% off.
  • Tell people you're going and share with/invite your friends! Here's a link to their Facebook event and their Instagram page.
  • Show up to the Anacortes ferry terminal 60 minutes prior to your sailing time to make sure you get your reservation.
  • Thoroughly enjoy a magical ferry ride...

Now that you're on Orcas, it's party time! Orcas is my favorite of the San Juan Islands. The beer fest is bound to be fantastic, and if you're there for a few days, check out these other things to do:

Mount Constitution: You can drive to the top of this mountain but I find the hike up to be more satisfying.

Top 10 Restaurants: If you want a true farm-to-table experience, try the restaurant at Doe Bay in Olga.

Island Hoppin' Brewery: These people make some fantastic beer. The Old Madrona has always been my favorite, and that's saying something because I don't make a habit of drinking Imperial reds very often. They also have a small menu perfect for pairing with a tasty pint.

So, I know that November 11th is right around the corner, but I'm hoping this post finds you with the weekend available and a little adventuresome spirit. If nothing else, could you forward this to some of your beer-loving friends? We'd like to see another Hops on the Rock next year!


Lyra Penoyer