Thursday, September 12, 2013

Rebecca Spit to Comox to Lasqueti Island

Sunset over Quadra Island 

To my delight my salmon in foil was a big hit.  Our evening ended early.  I had checked the weather report and forecast the winds to 20 NW.  By 8:00 P.M. it was blowing; not 20 but enough for Len and Giselle to want to be on their boat.  I prepared for the dreaded anchor dragging in Rebecca Spit.  I slept in the cockpit with flashlight, boots, clothes, headlamp and engine key ready to go at the first sign of trouble. 

Note:  When I set my anchor I always put extra pressure on the anchor by putting the boat in reverse at 2,000 RMP to simulate storm force on the boat.  I was confident I was not going anywhere, but one never knows… .

I did have a show to watch.  Two boats that were rafter, anchored and stern tied were obviously not confident in their abilities or their ground tackle (anchor, chain and line).  They untied.  One boat re-anchored without a stern tie and the other boat high-tailed it to the Taku Resort across Drew Harbour. 

I also knew that, with the direction of the wind, if I dragged, it would be in the direction of Len and Giselle.  It was highly probably that my anchor would reset.

The night was eventless for me.  Having said that, I slept in gopher mode; every now and
Granite wall in Boho Bay
again I would pop my head up to take note of the lights I wanted to see: the boat beside me, behind me and the resort lights on land.

The next day we made our way to Comox.  No wind and calm seas were the conditions.  Motoring was in my future.  Just south of Mittlenatch there was hope for sailing.  I told myself that if the wind could remain between five and six knots for 10 minutes I would pull out the sails.  Things were looking up for sailing.  When I sail, I do not go below and leave the sails unattended so I took the opportunity to go below and grab a snack before sailing.  Looking forward I could see ripples on the water.  This was a good sign for it meant wind.

Out came the sails.  Did It followed suit.  Giselle came on the radio and announced the competition was on!  I reached a full 2.2 knots of boat speed before I gave up.  The wind, upon pulling sails out, decided to subside to zero. 

We crossed Comox Bar on a rising tide.  I pulled into Comox Bay Marina (my favourite) and they docked at the government wharf for the yacht club reciprocal.  Dinner consisted of fresh prawns purchased direct from the boat at 6:00 P.M @ $6/lb.
Did It left on Satuday morning for Schooner Cove.  I stayed to visit with friends and family.  My kids and grands had dinner with me on Saturday night after Meghan and I walked to Goose Spit and back.  Sunday I met with friends regarding Lima, Peru where I will join them at the end of November for a visit to their Peruvian home.  The rest of Sunday was used preparing for a dock potluck party, which turned out to be great fun.

Dew laden Ta Daa at sunrise.
Amazingly, Monday was used for a taking-care-of-business day.  Also, on Monday, my girlfriend Cecilia joined me for the next week of sailing.  We departed Tuesday morning under pristine conditions for sailing. Our destination was Boho Bay, Lasqueti Island.  Once we crossed the bar, the sails were eagerly set.  We sailed close to Sisters Islet before wind subsided and sails were hauled in.  If we couldn’t sail we would fish.  Bill, in Comox, prepared my salmon lure.  We fished for close to an hour with no nibbles.

I had never been in Boho Bay before and it came highly recommended by Len and Giselle.  As we rounded the corner the spot that I had preconceived was gone but with my rangefinder and the depth sounder, it took no time to choose another place to set the hook.  We joined four boats and another came after us.

I must say it is beautiful.  Sunsets are early but we get the sunrise. 
Yesterday we set out early for the Innovative Aquaculture tour with Gordon Jones.  The Jones brothers are amazing in that they have kept reinventing their aquaculture business
Sunrise over Jedediah Island
to (pardon the pun) stay afloat as the times and demands have changed.  After the tour we geared up for my Inca Trail training – hiking boots, backpack laden with stuff, and my camera.  Cecilia cracked the whip.  We hiked to the top of Mt. Gibraltar and walked the other trails on Jedediah Island for hours before going for a ‘buff’ swim at a private and gravelly beach.  Refreshed, we were back at Ta Daa by 6:30 P.M.  We noticed all other boats had vacated and one new boat was our neighbour for the night.  A dinner of curried clams and rice was served at 7:30 P.M. 

Eighteenth century sheep?
A sight on the island is the wild sheep, believed to be descendants of the sheep that Spaniards brought in the 18th century.  They are unshorn.  Their wool has trapped mud and sticks so much so that they rattle a tune when they trot past.  It reminds me of a First Nations costume that rattles a rhythm when they dance.

With no moon visible to us, the stars were our focus.  They were stunning and plenty.  We slept in the cockpit under the Big Dipper.  I only had to shake Cecilia for snoring once!  The mozzies (mosquitoes) were a bit of a bother but not enough to drive us below to sleep.  We would periodically
Early morning dive off Ta Daa.
hear the seals playing and hunting fish in the bay.  They would slap their tails before descending. 

It was another beautiful sunrise this morning.  Not a cloud in the sky.  Cecilia started the day with a swim off the boat.  I, as you can see, updated the blog.  Shortly, we will re-visit the aquaculture farm and do some more walking on Jedediah Island.

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