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Harstine Island – A Remote Paradise
 
Harstine Island, approximately ten miles long and three miles wide, is located at the southern end of Puget Sound, 18 miles away from the nearest town, Shelton.   The island is accessible by a bridge from Highway 3 that links Shelton to Bremerton.   Harstine Island had a population of 1,002 in the 2000 census.  Stories exist to explain the several spellings of Harstine/Hartstene.
 
Lured by the quiet beauty and low cost of land on Harstine Island, early settlers farmed, logged, planted orchards, and gathered clams and oysters from the sea.  The settlers built schools, stores and in 1914, volunteers erected the Community Hall,  which is still actively used today.   Electricity and telephone were not available on the island until 1947.  A ferry provided transportation across the passage until 1969, when a bridge was built connecting the island to the mainland.  Hartstene Pointe development followed soon afterward.
 
Hartstene Pointe
 
In 1970 Weyerhaeuser established Hartstene Pointe as a not-for-profit corporation.  Located on the northern tip of the island, it is an unincorporated community of 532 home sites, many round, surrounded by common green belt property. There are approximately 430 homes, with the remainder of the lots undeveloped.  While Hartstene Pointe was originally planned to be a recreational community, approximately one-fourth of the homes serve as primary residences today.
 
The Pointe employs a full time Manager, Office, Patrol, and Maintenance staff. The Pointe is governed by a seven member Board of Directors who are elected by the property owners. The Board functions under the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&R's).  All development at the Pointe, including new construction, additions, exterior maintenance and painting and tree cutting is closely regulated by a Permit Review Committee. 
 
There is a 6,000 square foot Clubhouse, including a library, a swimming pool, spa, three tennis courts, basketball court, playground, pickle-ball court, 5 1/2 miles of walking trails, a 110 slip marina, a boat launch, picnic areas and 3 ½ miles of beach. 
 
After 45+ years, Hartstene Pointe remains heavily wooded with Douglas fir, hemlock, cedar, madrona, maple and various other deciduous trees. The area is also home to a significant population of birds, deer, raccoons and several families of red fox. Bald eagles have been sighted along the waters edge. Along its perimeter, Hartstene Pointe gives magnificent views of Puget Sound, Mt. Rainier and the Olympic Mountains.
 
The community recently established The Hartstene Pointe Water-Sewer District,  that has acquired the water and sewer utilities formerly owned and operated by Mason County.  Hartstene Pointe Water-Sewer District is a totally separate government entity and is not run by Hartstene Pointe.

 
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