- A Late Start
We got a late start this year.
It was a hard decision but we decided to
postpone our cruising so we could participate in a Choir Travel
opportunity to Europe (Prague, Salzburg, Budapest).
We left Galiano on Saturday evening (Jul 22) and popped around to
Montague. On Sunday we had a hot dry power up to Clam Bay in a stiff
North West Wind and spent two nights there, sheltered from the strong
North West wind, and enjoyed a pot luck dinner with Rebecca Lee
(Linette and Geoff). The North Wester switched to a South wind last
night and we had a pleasant, but slow, sail to Dodds Narrows and then
powered to the Port of Nanaimo. We expect to stay here two nights and
then head North - probably initially by crossing to the Sechelt
Thanks for the expressions of concern about our home on Galiano. It is
far south of the fire site and was never in any danger.
But we did enjoy the sight of a Sirkorsky Skycrane helicopter flying
over Clam bay towards the fire on Galiano.
July 28, Boho Bay, Lasqueti
The wind was blowing North West out in the Strait of George early this
morning - not in our favour. But the weatherman was predicting the
winds to die by noon and even switch to the South for a while. It was
quiet in the Port of Nanaimo boat basin at 6am so we made our
exit along with many others. Our plans for the day were complicated by
the fact that the Military exercise area Whisky Golf was active. This
rather large area of the Strait of Georgia lies directly on the route
between Nanaimo and the Sechelt and is used, among other things, for
the test firing of torpedoes. It is a nuisance. We had to decide
whether to go below Whisky Golf and then up the Sunshine Coast (dead
into the wind) or straight up the Vancouver Island side (Dead into the
wind) and then cross over when we reach ed the top of it.
We took the second choice and after a long 3+ hours of powering were
finally able to point across towards Lasqueti and Texada Island, set
the sails, relax and enjoy a nice sail.
Boho Bay is located on the mainland side of Lasqueti Island. Eleanor's
Uncle Ches has mentioned it as a good place to anchor. We have never
visited here before and the distance was about right. The bay is very
well protected in a North West wind and moderately well protected in a
South East wind. Naturally, as we approached the bay the wind swung to
the south. We decided to stay anyhow - the holding is good and although
the bay is open to the South East wind there is no wave action, and the
winds are supposed to die and/or switch back to the North tonight.
Tomorrow's prediction is for wind from the South and we may take
advantage of this to move closer to Desolation Sound rather than
explore the Sechelt area any further.
Boho Bay is quite pretty. We are anchored along side a cliff which is
part of a Park Reserve. To the north in Skerry Bay we can see
what looks like a fairly large Marine Farm of some sort - probably an
Oyster Farm. There is only one other boat in the bay with us - anchored
right behind us.
ps We both explored the Bay by kayak. Huge oysters everywhere.
Sat, July 29 Squirrel Cover,
Island, Desolation Sound
We made it! Left Boho Bay at 6:30am and powered until about noon in
uncertain winds and rain showers. At the end of Texada Island we picked
up the predicted South East winds and had a wonderful sail down to
Desolation Sound, dropping the hook in Squirrel Cove about 4:30pm. A
long day but felt good. Cell phone coverage is excellent here. We will
stay for two nights for sure.
Mon, Jul 31, Squirrel Cove -
Amateur Radio email is slow but does allow us to communicate from
almost anywhere. Coming up the Strait of Georgia we were able to use
line of sight communications to stations in the Sechelt and in
Parksville to send and receive email. Now we are in Desolation Sound
that option is no longer available and we are using shortwave
frequencies at much lower speeds. This also means we are restricted as
to the time of day when we can send and receive email. This message is
probably being relayed by an Amateur Radio Station down in
We also chat to friends in the Gulf Islands most mornings using Amateur
Radio and also check into a "Boater's Net" late in the afternoon.
Cellphone coverage is pretty good, especially when we are moving
We really slowed down and
relaxed in Squirrel Cove. We did maintenance,
read and played the guitar. The switch that controls the pump that
pumps water out of the shower has been replaced. Some electrical work
on the Amateur Radio Antenna was required. We replaced the dinghy tow
line. Eleanor has sanded and resurfaced some of our teak.
Sunday we dinghied over to the general store to dump garbage and
purchase some milk, cream and fresh veggies - the corn was delicious.
Then we went over to the floating bakery and ordered cinnamon buns for
the next morning - ready hot out of the oven at 8am. Boats come and go
at almost any time of the day. We have a real monster near us -
probably 100 feet long (30 metres?). Eleanor counted 21 portholes along
one side of it. We can hear generators throbbing gently in the
distance. Fortunately none are near us. Our solar panels continue to
provide all the electricity we need.
Tuesday we plan to move to Von Donop Inlet and then we move over to the
Heriot Bay marina on Thursday evening for a couple of nights.
The weather has been cool and showery but is improving noticeably each
Aug. 5, Saturday, Heriot Bay Marina,
We are enjoying a stay at the Heriot Bay Marina for a few days. They
have a high speed wireless Internet service so I thought I would take
advantage of it to circulate a few pictures from our regular email
We will be here for another two nights - we are going into Campbell
river to go exploring with friends.
Aug 19, Sat, Tribune Bay, Hornby
Island - heading home.
Lovely mellow evening in Tribune Bay after a long passage from
Desolation Sound. We sailed about half way and powered the other half
due to light winds. A 10 hour day starting at 7am. We are about 1/3rd
of the way home. This is a busy anchorage with lots of boats and many
people playing on the shore. The water is 65 degrees - swimable
compared to the 55 degrees up in the Octopus Islands Marine
We are looking forward to a nice quiet night and will plan our next few
days depending on the strength of the North West winds. We expect to be
home before next Saturday. Sailing conditions for the voyage south are
We enjoyed entertaining friends up in the Desolation Sound area. We had
some good sails and some days when we had to power but it was always
pleasant and we enjoyed good company.
Thursday, Aug. 31 - back home at
Whaler Bay (actually arrived Wed, the 23rd).
Tribune Bay on Hornby Island is a
wonderful place to visit. Eleanor and
I were both tired after our long run down from Desolation Sound so we
elected to sleep in and take a layover day. We walked the big wide
sandy beach, shopped and sketched. Conditions sounded great for the
move south and the next day we were up at 6am, Sunrise, and heading
south again. The winds started out light and peaceful but built
throughout the day so that by the time we entered Departure Bay at
Nanaimo it was blowing North West 25 knots. Almost the entire day was
spent sailing "wing on wing", which means the wind was directly behind
us. We had the big jib out on one side of the boat and the main
on the other. This is a wonderful point of sail but it does required
constant attention at the helm and we were both tired when we
We wanted to keep moving while the conditions were favourable so after
some shopping, boat washing and provisioning we fell into bed and got
up at 7am to catch slack water at Dodds Narrows at the North end of the
Gulf Islands. Again a nice breeze carried us South, through Dodd's
Narrows and half way to Thetis Island. But there conditions changed
dramatically. The wind switched abruptly to the South and started to
build. Reluctant to start the engine we started tacking into the wind
and finally pulled into the calm of Clam bay behind Thetis Island.
Another tiring and physical day.
Wednesday the weather forecast was for South winds (against us) for the
morning and North winds (for us) for the afternoon. I suggested we wait
until noon to leave but Eleanor didn't believe the weatherman. She
wanted to leave at the crack of dawn when things were calm and power to
Montague before the South winds developed - and that is what we did. By
9am we were happily tied to a mooring buoy in Montague Marine park and
enjoying a nice breakfast. At noon we powered around and through Active
Pass at slack water. Eleanor sure called this one right. The North
winds never developed and we would have faced a long trip into the wind
if we had waited until the afternoon.
The tide was so low in Whaler Bay we had to anchor in the outer harbour
and wait for the tide to rise. At 3:30pm we finally powered into the
inner harbour. The dock was extremely busy. We ended up tying up
against "Grapple", a big tugboat that home ports in Whaler Bay. It was
two days later when we finally got Galiander moved to the main dock in
her proper place.
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