Let it Snow! Winter Driving Tips

SnowDrivingIt’s officially here!  Snow is currently lightly falling at the office with more expected throughout the day. The tips below are courtesy of AAA.

  • Accelerate and decelerate slowly. Applying the gas slowly to accelerate is the best method for regaining traction and avoiding skids. Don’t try to get moving in a hurry. And take time to slow down for a stoplight. Remember: It takes longer to slow down on icy roads.
  • Drive slowly. Everything takes longer on snow-covered roads. Accelerating, stopping, turning – nothing happens as quickly as on dry pavement. Give yourself time to maneuver by driving slowly.
  • The normal dry pavement following distance of three to four seconds should be increased to eight to ten seconds. This increased margin of safety will provide the longer distance needed if you have to stop.
  • Know your brakes. Whether you have antilock brakes or not, the best way to stop is threshold breaking. Keep the heel of your foot on the floor and use the ball of your foot to apply firm, steady pressure on the brake pedal.
  • Don’t stop if you can avoid it. There’s a big difference in the amount of inertia it takes to start moving from a full stop versus how much it takes to get moving while still rolling. If you can slow down enough to keep rolling until a traffic light changes, do it.
  • Don’t power up hills. Applying extra gas on snow-covered roads just starts your wheels spinning. Try to get a little inertia going before you reach the hill and let that inertia carry you to the top. As you reach the crest of the hill, reduce your speed and proceed down hill as slowly as possible.
  • Don’t stop going up a hill. There’s nothing worse than trying to get moving up a hill on an icy road. Get some inertia going on a flat roadway before you take on the hill.
  • Stay home. If you really don’t have to go out, don’t. Even if you can drive well in the snow, not everyone else can. Don’t tempt fate: If you don’t have somewhere you have to be, watch the snow from indoors.

Stay warm and safe!

Don’t Miss the Tulip Festival!



It’s the last official weekend for the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival just south of Bellingham.    Each particular field has it’s own set of activities and hours. Both the Roozen Garden and Tulip Town fields have beautiful displays ready for you to enjoy! There are many incredible photo opportunities and chances to sample and purchase local food and flowers. To learn more visit the Tulip Festival website today!

The tulip festival officially runs until April 30th, but some

fields are extending until May 7th, or as long as the flowers are still in bloom. Many other activities also surround the festival from the Tulip Run to Whale Watching Tours leaving near by Anacortes, it’s sure to be a great trip and day for everyone! For complete information on the Tulip Festival you can visit the event office at 311 Kincaid St in Mt. Vernon, WA or by telephone at 360-428-5959.

Mt. Baker Ski Area- Opening Day!

The ski and snowboard season is here! The Mt. Baker Ski Area is open for the season.  IMG_0111Located just a short 1 hour drive outside of Bellingham up State Route 542 (known by locals at the Mt. Baker Hwy) you will find the Mt. Baker Ski Area in the foothills of majestic Mt. Baker. You can see the snow covered peaks of Mt. Baker and the Twin Sisters while driving in and around Whatcom County. Mt. Baker serves as a spectacular backdrop to many views around Bellingham.

Skiers, Snowboarders, Snowshoes and Snowmobiles visit the mountain daily to enjoy the wonderful powder and world famous ski conditions. According to www.MtBaker.us , the mountain receives an average snowfall of 647 inches a year.  First lift out of the White Salmon Lodge

If you are looking to take a trip up to Mt. Baker but have never been there are lots of opportunities available for everyone. Mt. Baker offers daily lessons and rental  in both skiing and snowboarding with rental rates starting at $35 for children on up to $55 for adults.  If you are thinking of making a vacation of your visit there are many accommodations available within the Mt. Baker Ski Area vicinity you can visit the accomodation list on the Mt. Baker Ski Area’s website.  Many people also own vacation homes in the along the Mt. Baker Hwy on the way up to the Mt. Baker Ski Area. If you would like to search for homes or properties currently available in the eastern Whatcom County area you can visit the Mt. Baker Area Real Estate Search here.

Enter to Win a Fresh Filet of Salmon Courtesy of the Johnson Team

How would you like to win a fresh filet of this salmon! Head over to the Johnson Team Real Estate’s Facebook page to see how you can enter to win!

Salmon GIveaway Bellingham

Thanks Lance Lootens for posing with this beauty of a catch! All entrants must be able to pick up the filet tomorrow Jan. 31st or have someone in the Bellingham area able to pick up at 510 Lakeway Drive. Good luck to all those that enter!

San Juan Island Fishing Report

Bellingham Salmon FishingThis could be in the books as the absolute best fishing of all times for the summer run of Chinook salmon in the Northern San Juan’s. It was nearly a guarantee to catch fish on every trip out. All the hot spots were producing quality fish- Thompson, Waldron, West beach on Orcas and of course Alden Bank. It was such a for sure bet out there that we even tried a new spot that looked fishy on the northern tip of Barnes Island- Whacked em’ there too. The biggest fish landed on the “Reel Estate” was a 27 lber. But I was on the McAuley’s “Fish n’ Jul” in August and took part in Kirk Hawley’s landing of a 36 lb Fraser River white king. As with fisherman protocol that was landed in a location that I can not disclose, but I will say it was at a depth and spot I would not have tried.

AaronFor the crabbing it looks to remain open through the end of the year in Marine area 7. It is 5 crab per person per day, and these fall crab are delicious. We typically go out in front of Sandy Point in 50 feet of water, but I do have to say we don’t trap many. Most boats get them pretty good but for what ever reason we never load up.

The Salmon Season will end October 31st and re-open Dec 1st. At this point most of the fish will be Blackmouth Salmon- the best eaters of the year. If tips are needed just give us a call at the Fishing Hotline 360-303-2734 we are happy to help.


"Reel" Estate Salmon Fishing Report

BellinghamSalmonFishingMarine area 7 has opened for the 2013 salmon season. These are typically traveling fish headed back to the rivers for the spawn. Usually, the hot spots are mid islands around Obstruction Pass, Tide Point, Deep Water bay and Indian Village. These are great spots to get in on the Nooksack and Samish River fish. Rule of thumb is spoons catch more and bait catches bigger fish. With July 1st being opening day, and it being a Monday, there were not a ton of reports. The rivers are high with the snow melt so it seemed a little slow. Out of the few connections on the saltwater, Kesha Huntley whose pole is pictured here seemed to have the hot spot. She did keep it a secret but if we find out, you will see the “Reel Estate” trophy working it hard. Don’t forget, crabbing opens in Marine area 7 on the July15th and Marine Area North opens August 15th.

This fishery is getting better every year and for the table, nothing is better! If you need any tips- just give the fishing hotline a call – 360-303-2734- we are happy to help.

Lake Samish, a South Bellingham Gem!

Lake Samish Real EstateSummer is just around the corner and with that comes warm weather and afternoons spent cooling off at the Lake.  Bellingham and Whatcom County are lucky to be home to several lakes, one of which is Lake Samish.

Located just South of the Bellingham city limits is the beautiful tree-lined Lake Samish area. Homes dot the shores of the pristine lake, while others perch high above on the surrounding hillsides all the while boasting breathtaking territorial views. These well-crafted homes provide lovely vantage spots to enjoy the local scenery and convenient access to the area’s recreational activities like canoeing, boating and water skiing.

Lake Samish is home to a county boat launch and also a county park  located at the North end of the lake. The park is home to a swimming area and a day lodge great for small family gatherings or business meetings.

If you would like to call the Lake Samish area home you can search for real estate available in the area on our Lake Samish Real Estate page on our website.

Blackmouth Salmon Fishing Report for Bellingham and Marine Area 7


As many of you may know the Johnson Team’s Mike Bredeson is our resident fishing expert, but as the photo at left shows maybe it’s really his wife Kim that knows how to do the salmon fishing in the family. Check out Kim’s catch during the Anacortes Fishing Derby during Easter weekend.

Below is Mike’s “REEL Estate” fishing report for April, 2013:

The fishing has been hit & miss for the latter part of March for Blackmouth Salmon. It was hot and heavy throughout February and the first part of March, then just sort of went flat.

The Annual Anacortes Derby was held March 30-31st. Over 1,000 rods in the water for the 2 day tournament and approx 250 fish were weighed in. I think this is about a normal number for the tourney, so I guess typically this is the time of the year for a slow down.

My wife Kim and I entered and for the two days of fishing, were rewarded with a 12lb and a 5lb fish.. Kim’s fish did get her a new electric trolling motor courtesy of LFS Marine in Bellingham. This particular derby provides scholarships for fishing related education- so the cause is great.
Look for some great Halibut and Lingcod fishing in May.

This fishery is getting better every year and for the table, nothing is better! If you need any tips- just give the fishing hotline a call – 360-303-2734- we are happy to help.

The Historic Mt. Baker Highway known to locals as the 542

You can’t live in Bellingham or visit Whatcom County for long and not hear the term 542 or Mt. Baker Highway. The Mt. Baker Highway, state highway number 542 is Bellingham’s gateway to the majestic Mt. Baker. Mt. Baker is treasured by local residents and visitors alike for it’s stunning snow capped beauty, world class ski slops and unbelievable hiking opportunities. But, not only is Mt. Baker amazing, so it the historic drive up the highway, the sites, trails, businesses and views along the way.

As you leave Bellingham headed East on the the Mt. Baker Highway you travel over the Nooksack River, through the foothills communities of Deming, Kendall, Maple Falls and Glacier.   Along the way you will pass the unique Northfork Beer Shrine/Wedding Chapel,  vineyards, a variety of restaurants, lodging, a casino and miles of scenic trails through National Forest lands.

The final 24 miles of the highway are designated a U.S. National Forest National Scenic Byway, starting just after the town  of Glacier to Artist Point above the ski area.  Along the way, at milepost 52 is the Mt. Baker Ski Area, offering skiers and snowboarders some of the finest terrain and the best snow conditions in the west. Mt. Baker is know world wide for it’s natural half pipe and the legendary Banked Slalom Snowboard competition.

If you are not lucky enough to drive the Highway yourself check out our Mt. Baker Highway virtual tour below to see some of the beauty for yourself.

Mt Baker highway is a only a short 57 miles but packed into that 57 miles is something for everyone. A trip along The Mt Baker Highway could include a stop by the Mt Baker Winery’s tasting room, views of the Nooksack River as it makes it’s winds it’s way through the Cascades, a stop at Everybody’s Store for lunch, a side trip to Nooksack Falls, the thrill of Deming Speedway and of course a Photo Op of Mt Baker, Mt Shuksan & Picture Lake.

If you are thinking this is an area you might like to call home there are many real estate opportunities and homes for sale  in Eastern Whatcom County and the foothill communities of Deming, Kendall, Acme and Glacier.  Feel free to visit our real estate map search to search for homes or properties that may fit your needs.

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Salmon Fishing is Hot! Roche Harbor Salmon Derby this Weekend!

Salmon fishing has been great lately! Just a quick 10 minute boat ride out of Sandy Point in Ferndale in Marine Area 7 North we have been landing the fish. Chad Lindsey pictures here was all smiles with his salmon caught last weekend.

If you are a into fishing or have a love of marine life and waterfront living Sandy Point is a wonderful area to live. Sandy Point is a waterfront community located on a peninsula. With incredible views of the San Juan Islands, and the Straight of Georgia to the West and even Mt. Baker and the Twin Sisters to the East, its difficult not to want to call this lovely community home.

Approximately 600 homes are located in the Sandy Point community and amenities include a 9 hole golf course and club house, tennis court, swimming pool and wonderful community center with a variety of planned activities.

Many homes are located right along the canal waters and include private docks or mooring slips, creating a welcoming vibe for avid boaters. To search for real estate for sale in Sandy Point click here.

This weekend the Johnson Team’s 2009 Trophy the, “Reel Estate” is taking place in the 10th Annual Roche Harbor Salmon Derby February 8-th. We are hoping to land some fish and take home some of the over $25,000 in cash prizes.

Spoons seem to be getting the fish on the hook as of late. If you need a current fishing report feel free to give me a call I would be happy to help! (360) 303-2734.

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