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Our Journey on Scolamanzi II
Our Journey on Scolamanzi II

Rounding Cape Caution for the last time

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5th – 12th September 2016

A favourable forecast saw us departing Rivers Inlet at 0700. No wind and a run-out tide brought Cape Caution abeam 2 hours later. By now a light NW wind had come up and with the incoming tide was pushing us nicely into Queen Charlotte Sound. The plan was to head for Port McNeill to buy a few supplies before heading into the Broughton’s for a few days. The marina seemed a popular stopover as we were docked amongst many boats we crossed paths with on our way south. Port McNeill is a pretty little town near the north end of Vancouver Island but quite remote. We explored the town the next day followed by a pub dinner in the evening but alas nothing outstanding to report. Maybe we have just been spoiled by now.

 

 

Early the next morning in a fresh SE wind with intermittent rain showers we crossed over the Strait in headed for a secluded spot as 30 knots SE were predicted the next day. Turnbull Cove was scenic and protected with good holding on a muddy bottom – usually the dream anchorage. The wind did not seem that bad amongst the islands so we headed to check out Sullivan Bay with its lovely quaint marina and surrounding boathouses – one even has a helipad with chopper waiting.

We meandered thru the islands, passing Echo Bay and then down Fife Sound. Here we took the very narrow Old Pass to Misty Pass and then anchored in Joe’s Cove on Eden Island. Unfortunately, the weather remained misty and showery. I will for more than one reason remember Joe’s Bay. The reflection  of the rocks, bamboo, growth made the most interesting patterns on the still water. During a break in the weather we got the drone out for some overhead shots. Bad decision! Johann flew it up a creek and around a bend to have a look at a lake nearby. He lost contact with the drone and had to press the return home button. The drone faithfully returned but failed to take into account a tree lined ridge between him and us. We heard the crash. The search party returned to the boat a few hours later, wet muddy but empty handed and terribly sad.

Beautiful narrow passages

Beautiful narrow passages

Lots of Bamboo around the narrow stretches

Lots of Bamboo around the narrow stretches

The next morning, with no letup in the weather, we continued to weave our way thru the islands and channels finally anchoring in the inner bay of the SW arm of Pott’s Lagoon. The weather forecast after lunch revealed a windless day in Johnston Strait with favourable currents to get us to Campbell River. Just what we needed. Up anchor and off we went. Thru Chatham Channel and into Johnston Strait in fading light. The wind was blowing NW 10-15 knots but with the ebb tide, wind against tide made for choppy seas. Fortunately, we only had about 90 minutes to get to Port Neville. This would place us a bit nearer Seymour Narrows if we leave early the next morning to get there within one tide cycle. You have to cross the narrows near slack water and preferably going with the tide. Port Neville turned out to be a good choice with a nice protected anchorage near to Johnston Strait.

We departed in darkness at 0600 with the start of the flood tide. Winds thankfully remained light as b has a nasty streak to it. Our speed never dropped below 9 knots and we passed thru Seymour Narrows with the last of the flood tide heading for Campbell River in perfect weather. We were tied up, at our now familiar spot, in Discovery Marina at 1230 – this being our 4th visit.

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Discovery Marina - Campbell River

Discovery Marina – Campbell River

Sunset at Discovery Marina - Campbell River

Sunset at Discovery Marina – Campbell River

With the weather now clearing we decided to head out the next day to spend the night at Cortes Bay on Cortes Island. Both the Vancouver and Seattle Yacht clubs have “outstations” here. These are basically mini versions of the yacht club facilities. Great spots to go to as they are dotted all over these cruising grounds. Very much like RV Parks on the water.

Beautiful boat and Lighthouse on our way to Cortes Bay

Beautiful boat and Lighthouse on our way to Cortes Bay

The next morning, we cruised slowly thru the beautiful Copeland Island National Park heading south in perfect weather. Both of us were feeling a bit sad realising that our time on Scolamanzi 2 is now fast nearing the end. But hey, we had a great time!

That afternoon we entered one of our favourites, Pender Harbour, for the 3ed time. We docked at Fisherman’s Marina in Hospital Bay. What a pretty spot. After settling in we went for a long walk enjoying the scenery and all the lovely homes surrounding it. We have two 9lb aluminium gas cylinders in the gas locker. Today we filled one again. This means we used 27lb of gas for the cook top during our two seasons on Scolamanzi 2 – the oven is electric and the Weber BBQ has its own cylinder.

Fisherman’s Marina in Hospital Bay

Fisherman’s Marina in Hospital Bay

 

BC was having an Indian Summer. We left the next morning in windless conditions with not a cloud in sight heading for Gibsons to spend the night. Our booking in Vancouver only started the next day so we had to make up some time. Gibsons turned out a nice surprise! A pretty spot with interesting shops and restaurants. That night we had a great BBQ on the boat deck overlooking the town and harbour.

Scolamanzi at Gibsons Landing, Sunshine Coast, Canada

Scolamanzi on the left at Gibsons Landing, Sunshine Coast, Canada

Gibsons Landing

Gibsons Landing

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1 Comment
  1. Special, treasured memories!

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