I am sure that the literate people reading this are familiar with the works of James Joyce, and so will be familiar with the story Counterparts, in his story collection Dubliners. In the story, a minor office worker, after a long day of receiving abuse and harassment from his boss, goes home and in turn abuses his son. It is a well known pattern that the abused pass on their abuse to others, and it holds for political entities as well as for people. The state of Washington, through no fault of its own but through an accident of geography, has an exclave, Point Roberts, that is only reachable through Canadian territory. While the residents of Point Roberts are as fine and upstanding of Americans as could be found, they are subjected to a relentless barrage of Canadianization, where the only magazine they can find in their local stores is Curling Illustrated, and where school children are inoculated into a life of eating ridiculous floating chocolate. Faced with this abuse, Washington has decided to pass it along. A part of Washington's southern neighbor, Oregon, is in turn placed in captivity, its (theoretical) residents unable to return to the bosom of the motherland without passing through enemy territory.

And thus we turn to Sand Island, a small, not-very-creatively-named island near the Mouth of the Columbia, near the city of Ilwaco. The island lies north of the main channel of the Columbia River, inside of Baker Bay, a few hundred feet off of Cape Disappointment. Sand Island is the northernmost point of land in the state of Oregon, a geographic accomplishment that is tarnished by the fact that it would be very hard to reach it from Oregon. It would be hard to reach it from Washington, as well, but the shallow channel between it and Cape Disappointment would certainly be easier to cross than the frightfully fast, broad and unpredictable Columbia. Sand Island has no residents, structures and is, as the name suggests, mostly a jetty of alluvial sand placed down by the Columbia as she enters the ocean and slows down. It is still a not-insignificant piece of land, being about a mile long by a half mile wide. It is also not a true exclave, since it is not (yet) connected to the mainland of Washington, although given the abilities of the Columbia River to drop sediments, such a thing is not to be discounted as a possibility. And although part of this write-up is in jest, I do find it somewhat sad that as a loyal explorer of Oregon's geography, I would have a difficult time of ever visiting Oregon's northernmost point, even if it is just a bland expanse of sand and shrubs.

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.