The East Point Lighthouse was built in 1888 on the easternmost tip of Saturna Island in what is now the Southern Gulf Islands National Park Reserve, British Columbia. The light was established after intensive lobbying by the maritime community, local members of parliament, and trade interests in the region during the 1880’s.
Large ships bound from the Pacific to Vancouver, travel east through the Strait of Juan de Fuca, then turn north and follow Haro Strait, passing San Juan Island on their starboard side, before turning east again at Turn Point on Stuart Island and passing through Boundary Pass. From there, vessels turn north into the Strait of Georgia to reach Vancouver. Two lighthouses, Canada’s East Point Light and the Patos Island Light in the U.S., now bracket the transition between Boundary Pass and the Strait of Georgia.
In February 1886, the John Rosenfeld was undertow by the tug Tacoma on the beginning of a voyage from Nanaimo to San Francisco with 3,905 tons of coal. The captain of the tug became disoriented by a fine mist and was a few kilometers off course when his tug safely passed over a reef just moments before the John Rosenfeld struck bottom. The barge was a total loss but the cargo was salvaged by residents of Saturna Island and used to heat their homes for many years. Read more here and here. Download or open the CoastView app to explore more of Saturna Island here: