Cypress Highlands Natural Area Preserve

Cypress Island and includes rare freshwater wetlands and native fescue grasslands on rocky balds.
Located on the largest undeveloped island in the San Juan Archipelago, this preserve comprises 1,072 acres on Cypress Island and includes rare freshwater wetlands and native fescue grasslands on rocky balds. The preserve also protects natural forests indicative of the dry, “rain-shadow” location, including Douglas-fir, Pacific madrone, lodgepole pine, and seaside juniper. 
Features Protected: Roemer’s fescue- -field chickweed-prairie junegrass grassland community, Red fescue-Roemer’s fescue-Indian dream grassland community, Douglas fir/baldhip rose-oceanspray forest community, Douglas fir-Pacific madrone-Indian dream, Douglas fir-western hemlock/salal forest community, Douglas fir/salal-oceanspray forest community, Douglas fir-lodgepole pine serpentine woodland, low elevation fresh water wetland, peregrine falcon, and bald eagle.
Ecoregion: Puget Trough (Skagit County) 

Science, Research and Monitoring

Public and private universities, other research institutions and individual researchers may contact DNR to propose a research project at the site. If you are interested in pursuing research at Cypress Highlands NAP, please contact David Wilderman, natural areas ecologist, at
Examples of research and monitoring projects 

Environmental Education and Public Access 

Environmental education is a central theme in all public access areas on Cypress Island. The island is accessible by boat only. Recreation sites are located outside the preserve and are primitive, non-ADA ( Americans with Disabilities Act) accessible. Eagle Cliff Trail traverses the preserve, and may be accessed from both Eagle Harbor and Pelican Beach. The trail is closed seasonally, from February 1 through July 15 to protect threatened, endangered and sensitive species and habitat. Many environmental education opportunities exist at Cypress Island and will be developed as circumstances permit. 
For more information, see the Cypress Island Comprehensive Management Plan or contact the DNR Northwest Region natural areas manager.