Yesterday my Mom gently reminded me by letting me know we were a month behind in sending out a blog post. A month ? I thought it was only a few weeks … ?! It’s not that we haven’t wanted to blog, it’s that we didn’t quite have the bars to so. By bars we mean internet-quality cell phone service so we could use our phones as hotspots.
While we were out in the nether regions of coastal BC, internet-quality cell phone service usually entailed holding your phone up to the overhead hatch, waving it around rather frantically, then freezing in place, only to have the dreaded ‘No Service’ prompt appear.
Back in Bellingham
So, we’ve spent the last few days back where we started in early July – Squalicum Harbor in Bellingham. We’re tied up on the commercials side amongst a slew of Salmon gillnetters. But I really like this marina – clean affordable, with a great chandlery happy to accept our money. Our main reason was to wrap up a few boat jobs from our shakedown cruise over the summer. Luckily the list was short:
- Wash our Poor Filthy Boat.
- Change the Oil
- Inspect & Replace Primary & Secondary Fuel Filters
- Remove, Inspect, & Reinstall the Injection Elbow on the Exhaust
- Fix the NMEA 2000 T Connector for the Chartplotter that Chris broke.
- Remove the Electroscan Unit that died.
- Get a new down switch for the Windlass.
- Upgrade the cabin light over the Nav desk to a red/white LED.
- Upgrade one or two of the annoyingly noisy cabin fans.
- Do laundry.
- Buy food – Costco run!
- Get the Boat ready for heading down the coast.
What’s Next —
See how I slipped that last bullet point in there ?
The next several days will be big ones for Dharma Girl, Carrie, and me. We’ll be doing some backtracking out the Strait of Juan de Fuca, then making a Big Left Turn down the coast to San Francisco. We’ll be double-handing our boat and be enroute for a minimum of five days, or the trip could last longer – weather pending.
Cape Mendocino is looming down there, just past Eureka, and it’s the big challenge that sits between Cape Flattery and the Golden Gate Bridge. Rounding this cape is no small doing and demands careful weather planning, routing, and prudent seamanship.
We’ll be taking an “inside” route, staying close to the coast where we can readily adapt to any changes in the weather. Our plan is to get down to Coos Bay, refuel, and if the weather is good, press on. If not, we’ll stay in Coos Bay until we have conditions we consider favorable.
Highlights from our Trip up the Sunshine Coast to Desolation Sound, and then back through the Gulf Islands & Roche Harbor.
In sum, Canada has lots of trees and rocks. I mean, a lot. We did have a great cruise and got to stop in one great anchorage after another. More on that – with pics, I promise. The summertime weather was sunny, and warm, but not all that conducive to the sailing we were hoping to do. Both a little bummed by that. August was peak boating season as well, so solitude was sometimes hard to come by. I will say that our two nights in Theodosia Inlet made up for it all in spades. That was cool spot.
One day when we were especially grumbly about the lack of wind (probably brought on by a lack of cookies aboard) we were treated to an entire afternoon of whale watching. Sea Otters have also become my favorite water creature. A day has not passed where I haven’t seen one pop its head and check us out.
But we ranged about as far north as we felt we wanted to go, and then turned back down through the Georgia Strait staying on the western side this time. Our daily hops have been getting a little longer in mileage. We were both getting a little antsy about making our way south.
We stopped in Naniamo, transited Dodd Narrows, then cleared customs in Roche Harbor.
Thanks for reading! Cheers –