A Travellerspoint blog

Game On!

sunny 62 °F

The voyage of discovery lies not in finding new landscapes
but in having new eyes.

Marcel Proust

Quote supplied from the Captain’s logbook, a gift from Connie & Stan.

The weather here shares a common characteristic with our mountains: wait a minute and it will change. Clouds pile into each other, massing, darkening, dispensing a few raindrops and then are vanquished by brilliant sunshine. The locals here seem to accept this with perfect equanimity. It’s 50o, rainy and windy but they’re wearing shorts because in two hours it will be nice for precisely two minutes.

A natural bifurcation seems to have evolved between us; she is responsible for the trip details from door to dock. I own the details for what happens after we leave the dock. My half was a little bit easier this year than last. We ordered chart kits from the Royal Hydrologic Office last year. To my surprise there were no way points on any of the charts, way points being a specific location, longitude and latitude, in clear, safe water. I am sure many have traveled without these, Capt. Cook on the Endeavour comes to mind, but we have come to use and to rely on them, if for nothing else than to make route planning easier. So, the solution was to make our own based on the premise that most of the water here us way deep so, if you stay in open areas or comfortably between the sides of channels, no hay problema! Turns out Google Earth is exactly the right resource to do this, so we did. Having done all that for the last trip we added only a few more this year based on what we learned last year. Ergo, my job was mostly done.

Shopping is exclusively Carol’s purview, made more difficult this year by my new dietary regime. However, since this is not gin & tonic territory, scotch will be the Never for Ever’s portion of grog. That, I pick, so I did. I was shocked by the prices even factoring in that 25% currency exchange differential. There are no cheap drunks in Canada it seems.

Carol and I can sail well enough but neither of us has the “wind gene,” that natural sense of the interplay between wind and sail and how to harness those two elements together to sail fast. In farm terms we are draft horses not racehorses.


On the last two boats we chartered the two critical pieces of wind data were kaput: on both, the windex, on the top of the mast, was loose; on both the Raymarine electronic wind instrument did not work. We can, and did, sail without either of those two devices; we would have sailed better with them.

Wednesday and Thursday nights, we both slept hard. On Friday morning a nice young lady picked us up at the hotel and drove us to the marina for orientation and such. While Michael and I are walking down the dock I am into my thing about windexes and he is telling me no problem. We arrive at the boat and, sure enough, it’s flopping in the wind. Someone went up the mast to tighten it, so we are good.

We paid a couple of bucks extra to be able to board the boat on Friday and get all the scut work out of the way, a very good plan. The charter company also has a courtesy car, which Carol is using to get provisions.

This is a very, very nice boat. It is well equipped and well appointed. I will not be able to throw off on the Hunter brand anymore. The back cabin, where we will sleep, goes across the entire width of the boat; ours was truncated by a lazarette. This is a great size and comfortable for two people, well beyond two weeks.

We made a conscious effort to bring less stuff this year. Last year we mailed a package ahead and still brought a suitcase each and another for various non-clothing items. This year we dispensed with the mailed package and went with three suitcases. We are using the fore cabin for storage yet, somehow, it seems like getting 5-lbs. into a 3-lb. bag.

The indispensable criterion was a diesel heater which this boat has. Despite being in the mountains this place is quite a bit cooler, at least so far. In the 60’s if the sun is out, and comfortable if the wind is not blowing. We’ll try it out this evening.

The disappointments so far:

  • I brought two very good Streamlight flashlights which, of course, I didn’t check at the house because they worked just fine last year. This year, not even. I have the vague feeling that I am missing something that, if recalled, will solve the problem. So far, not recalled.
  • A bigger boat, a nice boat and only one 12v outlet. We have a 1 -> 5 adapter so we’ll be ok, but it’s not convenient.
  • I lost a shoe. It was old and beat up but, 5-year old children lose shoes, not adult men. I’m pretty sure I know what happened and where; it was easily replaced.

While Carol was out shopping, I was laboring away at getting waypoints into the chart plotter. This one is brand new and the ugly, tedious job went as quickly as could be expected. Out of maybe 60 waypoints I only had to correct 2. Better than my usual average.

So, we have a tentative program, not a plan lest the boating gods are angered. Cross over to Eggmont on Saturday, roughly 45 nm. Then, on Sunday, head to Princess Louise Falls, another 45 nm. These falls are supposed to be the main attraction in this area. There is a tricky bit getting there. Just at the entrance to the area there is a narrows which can only be traversed safely at about slack water. The upshot: specific arrival and departure times. We'll stay there a bit and then head north to Desolation Sound, maybe for the duration. There are lots of places to explore there.

I did talk to Michael, experienced in these wasters, about stern tie anchoring. He had some insights that may make things a little bit easier.

The barometer is over 30.00 inHg, so nice weather for next couple of days at least. We both worked pretty hard today, Carol more than me. We're starting out a bit behind the full energy curve, but no one ever said that having fun is supposed to be easy. We’ll try to use the nice weather and be underway very early on Saturday.

Posted by sailziveli 17:19 Archived in Canada Tagged boats sea canada cruising sailboats salish

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