Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Off to Port Hardy

Well we did escape Port McNeill. It wasn't evil. We promise. There were some really nice parts and people. The school bus system, for instance. Every weekday we enjoyed watching the enthusiastic (sic) kids from neighboring Sointulla and Alert Bay unload from the bus-boat at Port McNeill for school.

According to one source, the boat was one of many built as a ferry boat for the World Exposition a few years ago in Victoria, and found a place as a bus in Pt. McNeill.

We ought to give a Nobel Prize to the person that hung a punching bag on the aft deck. Brilliant.

Off to homework.
Mo was handling a really rough crossing out of the protection of Malcombe Island and into Queen Charlotte Strait. The seas were 5-7 feet chop and logs were literally everywhere. Five hours of frazzled nerves and books falling from shelves got us into Drury Inlet and a cozy spot for the night near Carter Passage.

Drury Inlet has to be timed to run through Stuart Narrows at tidal slack. Beyond lies Actress Passage and Actaeon Inlet. The neck into Bond Lagoon was about 6 feet under the keel and only thirty feet wide, but a very snug spot to wait out a gale. We watched 007 For Your Eyes Only to celebrate being in Bond Lagoon.
Further up into Tsibass Lagoon we found an unused logging road and a sign to ham it up in front of. Nice to stretch the legs.

We've become a bit cougar-shy in the Broughtons, having heard some local stories of recent encounters with our feline friends, so hikes have been daylight affairs. We pulled into one marina - Jennis Bay - to inquire about their local hikes and met a one-eyed yellow lab on the dock. Turns out the dog, head in mouth, was being carried off by a wolf, but the owner shot well and saved his dog.
BC is still a wild place, it seems. Chance listens to these stories and takes them very seriously. You can see by the ears.
Blain's new beard is growing in well...
Good day, better day. Any day sailing counts. Even rainy ones.

Interesting to say the least.

Lately we've seen enough rainbows to make a Care Bear puke. October weather has been sunny then rainy, then windy, then hail, then sun, then rain, then wind, then sun, etc...

One very notable character we've met is Keith. We made too much chili one night in Pt McNeill and shared some with him. Solo sailing in his 24'(?) pocket sailer KELCEY with only paper charts and a marine radio, he's on his way from Shearwater (near Bella Bella) to Victoria and back. He looks to be about 22 and heats his boat with a modified oil drum he built into a stove.

Recently we spotted him in a secluded cove chopping wood on shore and pulled in to invite him to lunch together. This sweet guy brought with him a little baggy of "hippy dust" (nutritional yeast powder), a tupperware of sprouted mung beans, and two cloves of homegrown garlic. I say this, not to make fun. With all respect, it was probably near the last of his supplies, and his contribution to lunch was truly appreciated. In fact the fresh sprouts, two weeks from fresh produce, tasted fabulous. We hope to hear of his progress and run into him again out there. He is an inspiration to anyone who thinks sailing is only for the rich and the retired. GO KEITH! Bon Voyage!


  1. Carebear puke sounds lovely...very nice description.