The main highway continues southward along the center of the island, named for Master Joseph Whidbey who, on June 2, 1792, discovered the pass that proved it an island. Four days before finding the passage, Whidbey, a member of Vancouver’s expedition, landed here to make observations. Since Vancouver charted “Whidbey’s Island,” usage has often dropped the “e” from the name, though the original spelling is officially retained.
Along the main road are occasional views of the broad Juan de Fuca Strait to the west. Bordering Whidbey on the east is Saratoga Passage, separating it from Camano Island, which parallels it for part of its length.
Construction of Ault Field during WWII resulted in re-routing of road around the new base that occupies most of Clover Valley, pushing the road to the east, cutting through Dugula Bay at this location.
Commissioned in 1942 during World War II as a strategic Pacific Ocean air base, the installation exerts a strong cultural and economic influence over the northern portion of Whidbey Island.
No public access to the base, jets regularly visible flying overhead