Sailing Down & Out

We mostly motored up the inside channels going up the North Coast so decided to sail down the outside–Hecate Strait and Queen Charlotte Sound on the way back to the Central Coast. The winds didn’t totally fulfill our dream being propelled on a northerly sleigh ride, ticking off the miles with Vanna (the wind vane, no leiderhosen here) steering. But on again/off again, it was pretty good. We used our new whisker pole that extends out to 27′–that’s a lot hanging out there–to hold out the jib for some of the down wind run. Luckily no big waves. If the tip of that pole ever caught a wave top it would be a bad scene. Jury’s still out on that thing though, we may sell if.
After we worked our way down the coast to McGinnis Island, we turned back in to the Bella Bella area to wait out the “Big Storm” forecast by Environment Canada. We hunkered down in Kynumpt Harbor, a deserted native village site that looked perfect to weather a strong south easterly. Carmanah was the only boat so we could pick the perfect spot with lots of rode out and the anchor well set. Plenty of pop corn, hot rum drinks, dvds– everything on deck secured. Couldn’t be better prepared. Only, it never happened–no 40 knot winds, no real rain just clouds. All dressed up and no where to go. It’s kind of a let down. We like a good storm if we can “tuck in” some where (and we were tucked). Oh well, the drinks were still good and the 348th showing of Captain Ron was every bit as good as the first 347. I actually ended up channeling Capt Ron down the road at Fury Cove.
We’ve come to the conclusion that this part of the coast is really some the best cruising there is. Base out of Bella Bella/Shearwater and there are an infinite number of opportunities for uncrowded, picturesque anchorages, open ocean, deep fjords, fishing, crabbing, shrimping. The scenery is incredible. It’ll be hard to cross back to the busy Vancouver Island area. Our last night (actually couple of nights) on the Central Coast was at Fury Cove. With a name like “Fury Cove”, you think–“hmmm, can’t be very relaxing”. But it is nearly land locked with a view out to the open ocean over this white sand/shell tropical looking beach. Unbelievably gorgeous–we anchored in a number of very cool places in this area but this is still tops. And, we had “beach day” here with temps around 80, we spent the entire day sitting in the sand on the beach. I even went swimming…to retrieve the dinghy anchor I threw overboard without a line attached, just like Capt. Ron. I thought of duct taping weights to Lucy’s feet for the retrieval but in the end stripped down and went after it my self. No sense getting on Donna’s bad side over a silly dinghy anchor.
The water in the open ocean up here is in the mid sixties–67 & 68 in some places. That’s too warm, I think it’s supposed to be in the low 50s. Very strange phenomenon. Salmon like 53 degrees so I’m using that as my excuse for not catching any. Luckily we still have chinook fillets from last year’s Barkley Sound expedition and they’re good. Getting them vacuum bagged and frozen immediately after catching really works. But we’re down to our last two so the pressure is on.
I cracked my front tooth so we will have to head back to civilization (Port Hardy) tomorrow to deal with it. Hoping for a strong Northerly to get us there, it’s forecast so I won’t hold my breath.

Beaches at Fury Cove seem more like a tropical scene than the North Coast.

Beaches at Fury Cove seem more like a tropical scene than the North Coast.

Day at the beach, Donna get some painting in under a shade tree (yes, we actually needed shade)

Day at the beach, Donna get some painting in under a shade tree (yes, we actually needed shade)


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2 thoughts on “Sailing Down & Out

  1. Sue Hylen

    Wow! Jeff brought this incredible challenge you have just pulled through on the midst of my office chaos day. Just read through the details and the kindred spirits who you encounter in such a time feel like the jewels of your journey:) so glad Lucy survived!
    Sorry I have not commented until now- the wedding is a week from Saturday!! And of course the office stuff goes on- but so good to hear all worked out through such a challenge. Miss you muchly!! Sue

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