Thursday, August 7, 2014

Culture Shock

Back to civilization...  Sigh
Despite only being away for the past month and a bit, we've just discovered people again.  Sure, the weather is warm so I can't blame them for staying south of Johnstone Strait, but 30 or more boats in the past two anchorages????  I'm sure we'll see at least that number again tonight...  I guess it's a good thing because that is one of the aspects of the Central Coast that made it so special.  Up there, the weather is a bit more variable and life in general is a bit more difficult, but the rewards are enormous.  Meeting the hoards down here just makes the past month all that more perfect.

Since we've left Sointula we spent two afternoons blasting down Johnstone Strait.  For both days the winds peaked at 30 gusting 35 knots.  This made for some exciting sailing in very close quarters (Johnstone strait isn't much more that a couple miles wide) but at least it was behind us.  We had some trying moments but being the glass half-full kind of boat, we've chalked the experiences up to great practice for offshore.  I just pray we get a few more days like that before we go so offshore will be easy...  Did I mention that in addition the to the 30 knots of wind and tight quarters we had to sail through a gill net fleet of about 100 boats?  Yup, we got to deal with that too.  There were times when there wasn't space between the nets from shore to shore...  at least it wasn't foggy at the time.  We actually pulled into an anchorage across from Robson Bight just to get out of it, and were rewarded with seeing killer whales and two black bears on shore (right where we'd been taking Charlotte to shore, of course).

Wish we had a telephoto lens!
You can almost tell its a bear
No mistake now!
Beautiful Newton Lake
After dealing with all that and escaping with nothing broken but our nerves, we ran the Okisollo rapids and arrived in Waiatt bay close to the Octopus Islands Marine park.  The park was chockablock full but we wanted to hike the next day so we anchored at the head of the bay with reasonable space around us.  The next morning we ran (actually we crawled) up to Newton Lake and spent a lovely lunch basking in the new found warmth of the south coast.  Despite the bajillion boats in the anchorage, there were only two other small groups at the lake so bathing suits were not necessary  (sorry no pics this time).  It was nice to stretch our legs again and the swimming was fantastic.
Swimming!  Even Karina went in.

We packed up the boat late yesterday afternoon and proceeded through the last set of rapids, arriving at Rebecca Spit just before dusk.  Yet again 30-40 boats were waiting for us there but our perseverance was rewarded with a nice walk this morning on the Spit before we took off south for Tribune Bay on Hornby Island.  Currently it's wall-to-wall blue sky with 6 to 7 knots of wind behind us.  I'm watching the wind speed carefully because at 7 knots we can shut the engine down and sail slowly with the spinnaker.  Yeah, it just hit 6.9 knots...  Got to go!

Blue sky and Spinnaker fly...  Cant ask for more!

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