People line up for great tasting water

LYNNWOOD, Wash. — Some say it's the best water in the world and it’s in Western Washington.

However, only a few people even know about it, and those who do, wait in line for it around the clock.  Most just drive by the packed parking lot off 164th Street without giving it a second thought.

Lynnwood’s free artesian water well pumps out ten gallons a minute of pure untreated water.  Its quality is beyond reproach; perhaps the world’s best according to fans like Mary Kay Lewis.

“Glacier fed artesian well,” Lewis exclaimed to the man next to her in line.  “How much better can you get?”

Lewis and those like her say “tap water tastes like chlorine.”

The well water comes straight from an aquifer more than 120 feet below the surface.

“It’s just crisp,” Lewis said while enthusiastically filling four large jugs and several smaller ones.  “That’s the only word for it. It’s crisp, clear, refreshing water!”

Water safety tests back up the taste.  The Alderwood Water District routinely tests the water.  It has not failed a test in its 60-year history.  It routinely tests well within safety limits and better than tap water.

“The earth has many natural powers of just cleansing the water,” said Alderwood Water District General Manager Jeff Clarke.  “It passes through the gravel and the dirt and that cleans the water.”

Clarke and his water treatment staff said the well was one of ten that helped provide drinking water to the area.  The well system was shut down when it could not keep up with demand; however, the 164th Street well was kept open for free public use.

The water district said so few wells like this one still exist because of a lot of ground water sources get contaminated, and maintaining a well can be expensive.  The 164th Street well is artesian, meaning the water pressure pushes to the surface on its own, which avoids the need for pricey pumping equipment.

“So it take an unusual circumstance (to have the well),” said Clarke.

It’s that special mixture of conditions that brings people from all around the Pacific Northwest to the Lynnwood well.

“It’s mountain water, no chemicals, no additives, you don’t taste anything but pure water,” said Cleveland Woods who brought his whole family up from Kent to fill jugs.

Lewis is down from Everett as she does once a month.

“I live alone, so between me and the cat, this will last a month,” she said.

Water district information about the well and water test results: