Snohomish River estuary is where the waters of the Snohomish River meet the salt water of Possession Sound, creating an estuary that was formed over the past 10,000 years.
In the 1930's a dike was built out of earth and wood around the island for flood control and the island was converted to agricultural use.
The picturesque barn near the entrance served many generations of farmers, and the implements they used still sit near the barn.
The island is named for John Spencer, who farmed here in the 1920s. Legend has it that Tom Mormon, who once raised over 400 head of cattle here, brought the barn in on log skids to its present location.
The estuary provides views of wildlife, routes for paddlers and kayakers, hiking trails and fishing.
Blacktailed Deer, coyote, rabbits, muskrats, river otter, and a host of small mammals and amphibians also inhabit the large island. There's a 3.5 mile trail that runs along the top of the dike that surrounds the island.
Conservation groups have placed nest boxes for wood ducks, and bat boxes also have been placed. In addition to birds and ducks, blacktailed deer, rabbits, muskrats and river otters are frequently seen. Spring is the best time to see wildlife.
From Everett, go north on SR529 (Broadway) over the Snohomish River; turn right onto Smith Island Road. Follow signs to Langus Riverfront Park; continue past the park to a parking lot just past the left curve in the road. Follow the gravel road on foot to Spencer Island.