Posted by: Ann | October 19, 2018

Tuesday, October 16th- Back Eddy to Princess Louisa

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Chatterbox Falls

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View from the Prince of Wales reach

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I have to add here that the Back Eddy docks seemed in bad shape.  It’s not unusual for a marina to let the gulls take over the outer docks resulting in quite a mess for anyone who docks there, but the ramp connecting docks to office here was listing off to one side.  And worst of all, there was a horrendous banging sound as if Fifth Element was hitting the dock every time a boat passed us. I wasn’t sure if that was the case or if it was just the dock itself that was making that noise, but it wasn’t a good experience.

We left just after 9 to make the Malibu rapids at slack.  I was happy to see several surf scooters and some sea lions as we crossed over to the Prince of Wales reach.  The subsequent Princess Royal and Queens reach were both beautiful today.  

We passed through Malibu rapids at 1:20 and made bets on whether we would see another boat or not at Chatterbox falls.  Upon our arrival at 2:15, we found only one other boat at the dock, a Pacific Seacraft sailboat from Vancouver named Cassiopeia.

I spent a lot of time taking in the falls which are still beautiful even with the reduced fall water flow. It was wonderfulLy quiet until a motorboat roared in with several youths making a racket on the bow. I thought we were in for an unpleasant eventing when one of them popped out and plopped a boom box down on the dock table, but fortunately they spent most of their time inland, and several left later that evening.

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Posted by: yachtanomaly | October 18, 2018

Princess Louisa Inlet,

Sun, Chatterbox Falls and empty dock!

Posted by: Ann | October 16, 2018

Monday, October 15th, Lund to BackEddy Marina, Egmont

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Shirt Sleeve weather

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Tight Squeeze at Lund

We tried to visit the LUND recycling center but it’s closed today.  The hotel isn’t taking anymore garbage.B802516B-CAE6-4936-AFC5-CDE1010F1F9A

Jon got a cinnamon bun from Nancys but made our mochas back on Fifth Element.  The espresso at Nancy’s hasn’t been good this trip.

We departed LUND about 10am and had a gentle cruise down the mainland coastline and into the Jervis Inlet.  We arrived at the Back Eddy Marina just after 4pm

I’m disappointed the pub is closed M and T now, so we tried to find a way to see or hear the Monday Night Football, 49ers vs Green Bay Packers, but although Jon found Westwood One radio, there was too much interference to enjoy.  I was able to get the play-by-play written reports, and the 49ers did their typical lead-until-the -last series loss.

Posted by: Ann | October 16, 2018

Sunday, October 14th, Campbell River to Lund

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Sunrise at Campbell River

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We were up to Starbucks by 7am in order to leave by 7:30 to avoid an adverse current in Discovery Passage.  At 8;30 we saw a big tanker coming into Campbell River, seemingly escorted by 3 Humpback whales.  They came right by us as they avoided the tanker.

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Humpback Whales pass us by

By 10:45 we passed by the Copeland islands where we saw a bald eagle watching over some very large pinnipeds- probably elephant seals.  Approaching Lund we were informed there was only a slot between 2 sailboats on A dock.  It looked like we could fit and Jon did an excellent job squeezing us in with only a yard to spare at bow and stern.

All settled in by 11:15, we made it in plenty of time for lunch and fresh cinnamon rolls at Nancys.  Then we used the WIFi to plan our trips home, which wasn’t easy given all the winter schedules.  Jon is going to have to take a float plane from Victoria because a three ferry schedule meant the Canadian ferries aren’t going to travel internationally exactly when he needs one.

We had a visit from two very fluffy black cats who were then chased back onto their sailboat by one of 4 dogs from another sailboat.  The dog owner said he doesn’t leave home without his “family” that also included a lovebird and a macaw.

I spent the afternoon on top of the pilothouse sketching local scenes.  It’s warm in the sun but cools off quickly in the shade.  We had dinner at the Boardwalk restaurant which is in the shade all day now, and it was chilly even in front of the gas fireplace.  The Octoberfest schnitzel was ok, but more expensive and not as tasty as Bistro Suisse in Sidney.

It was a beautiful long sunset.  We also saw this odd sea foam bubble that was trapped in a pool and circulated endlessly while building up into a large dome.

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Heriot Bay Inn end tie, right next to the Ferry dock prop wash

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We departed Heriot Bay around 10:45 after breakfast at Java Bay coffee shop.  Almost right away but we saw Humpback whales in the area between Heriot Bay and the BRETON ISLANDS.  First we saw a group of 3, then a group of two further out, and finally one that seemed to be playing or fighting with several sea lions.

We had a 5 kt current going into Discover Bay marina, one of 3 at Campbell River. It was a little tight getting into our assigned slip I-9 so it was nice to have front and rear thrusters;Jon hasn’t been using them in most locations.

The marina is very nice with a good laundry, and modest washrooms surprisingly free hot showers and of course the main reason for coming:  access to an outdoor shopping mall with Starbucks and all the big box stores like Canadian Tire, and several restaurants.  We had lunch at RipTide which may have too many items on the menu to be outstanding at any.  My oyster burger and Jon’s buffalo burger were just ok.

Jon found a Scotia Bank a longer walk away- no foreign transaction fee agreement with Bank of America- and even further is another Thrifty Foods where Jon stocked up on his favorite lunch meats.

We passed the White Spot restaurant on our way back to the marina.  We know nothing about it, but the parking lot is packed.  So we went back and had a delicious BBQ rib dinner.  Even the coleslaw was good.

Posted by: yachtanomaly | October 15, 2018

Another beautiful day in British Columbia

via PhotoToaster, using these settings.

Departing Lund this morning

Posted by: Ann | October 13, 2018

Friday evening, October 12th, breaking news

A surprising but pleasant development, the key combination on the GPS tracker worked! It beeped and came to life and now even charges from a USB port whereas before it only charged through Jon’s MacBook Pro portable. It is almost fully charged and still has it’s history which indicated the last tracking point was after 8pm Tuesday after arriving at Gorge Harbor. So it’s only missing the legs from Gorge Harbor to Octopus Islands and from there to Heriot Bay.

That means the only casualty so far turns out to be Jons Foster Grant titanium reading glasses that decided to leap into the water when he was on the stern swim platform.

We had a nice dinner at the Heriot Bay Inn although it was really too big a portion. I had to try the Yorkshire Pudding not having seen that British dish on a menu before. It turns out to be a popover split over mashed potatoes and stuffed with prime rib. It was spectacular looking, but I wouldn’t order it again. The popover itself doesn’t have any flavor and Canadians are so paranoid about their meats that the beef was over cooked, which still would have been ok, but this cook was heavy on the salt.

Yorkshire Pudding stuffed with Prime Rib over mashed potatoes

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Our Octopus Islands anchorage

We had two choices to transit the narrows, 7:30 am or 1:30 pm, so we opted for the latter to spend a little more time at our Octopus Islands anchorage.  I was really glad we did because we were treated to a family of 4 river otters cavorting and fishing for their breakfast.  

I also positively ID’d a very dull duck as a Common Loon, winter plumage, thanks to my iOS Sibley app that has a great of side-by-side feature- comparison of field marks.  The rest of the morning I mostly gazed at my landscape subject trying to only see the major shapes.  It’s really difficult for me to turn the Left, logical brain off and let the Right Brain capture the scene.

We both tried many different combinations of holding one or all of the 4 buttons down no the tracker, but no luck reviving it.  We even tried putting it in front of a heater and also in the fridge.  Jon later read that we are to hold down a key combination for 60 SECONDS (!) and it might revive, so maybe more on that later.  We are currently enjoying an afternoon coffee in Java Bay next the the True Value grocery behind the Heriot Bay Inn.

I was anxious to get off the boat because the wind had picked up as forecast and was really gusting when we docked at the Inn.  We had a tough tying off with the wind crushing Fifth Element against the outside finger pier and were afraid the dinghy would swamp.  Fortunately there’s room to tie off the dinghy inside our finger pier.

We plan to do some grocery shopping and then enjoy dinner at the inn.

Common Loon

Bright Overcast -> sun -> overcast

We started at 10:30 out the Gorge through the Uganda passage past Shark Spit, and then through Sutil Channel, into Hoskyn channel to get through Beazley pass and Surge Narrows at slack around 12:30. I’m mentioning the exact route because at some point either before or at Gorge Harbor our GPS tracker died. We suspect leaving it on and or/in the sun pouring into the pilot house may have killed the battery for good.

Just outside the Gorge, I saw a really big bald eagle on one of the Guide Islands. Someday, I will convince Jon to anchor on the other side of Marina Island because that long narrow sliver of Shark Spit looks like great beach-combing.

We saw a few other boats timing the narrows, so it felt a bit crowded. We’ve rarely seen other boats in transit this entire trip. A large 60plus footer identified as the Outbound was anchored in Waiit Bay, otherwise we were the only other boat in the Octopus Islands.

We anchored in the NE corner around 1:30 and shortly after took the dinghy out looking for the Great Blue Heron I’d seen on a nearby tree. Never saw him, but Jon spotted 3 raccoons wading and eating shellfish on the bank. We finally saw two more bald eagles, but otherwise it was surprisingly devoid of visible wildlife.

Sunset at the Octopus Islands

Posted by: Ann | October 10, 2018

Gorge Harbor Resort

Not the breezy, minimalist painting I had imagined, but it is what it is. So far, I’m just not getting the right balance; way too much detail and not enough emphasis on major shapes.

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