I like the views west, where the sun sets against the San Juan Islands. Cypress Island, in certain light, can look like a Japanese woodcut, its trees bent by sea winds, the shore jagged and pristine. The biggest of the islands, Orcas, is topped by Mount Constitution, which on rare days of deep winter chill will hold a frosting of snow.
Here’s a Seattle Times’ story on driving Chuckanut from last fall.
Take Exit 231, switch off the radio for the next 21 miles, and treat yourself to a quiet country drive. You’ll feel your blood pressure drop as the landscape gives way to acres of farmland, produce stands and nurseries in the scenic Skagit Valley. Douglas firs dominate in the area but there are also western red cedars, vine maples and red alders. Views of Samish and Chuckanut bays are to the west, and there are plenty of roadside diversions. Watch for a llama farm, a place that sells fresh-cut flowers and a Japanese nursery and antique shop.