Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Monday, August 27, 2012
Sunday, August 26, 2012
Day 10 – Blue Lips Cove – Amai Inlet– In The Middle Of Nowhere!
Wow, do we feel isolated. We woke up this morning in our little private “Columbia Cove”…not another soul around. Tonight, we’re going to bed in another private little “Blue Lips Cove.” Other than a little Native American village we stopped at, we hardly even saw any other signs of civilization other than a couple of kayakers in the distance and a far offshore fishing vessel. It’s wild, untamed, and very uncivilized out here. I don’t know if I’ve ever felt this isolated before in my life…including our trip to Alaska in ’09. I haven’t had a cell service and Internet service at the same time since last week Thursday in Port Hardy and we’ve cruised many miles out of our way just to find some village where I could find a phone booth. How can I pay for diesel fuel if I can’t do any deals?
Well, today, we went in search of communications and found a phone booth and an Internet signal in a little village called Walter’s Cove, but not before spending the better part of a day on the beach again. We woke up, packed a lunch, and found the trail head leading from Columbia Cove to the beach on the exposed shore. It was overcast but we were comfortable in t-shirts. Val and Connor found some nice mussels for dinner while Tanner munched on star fish. Connor and I played baseball on the beach using driftwood for a bat…Tanner was catcher and outfielder. This was probably the most beautiful beach we’ve found yet and the hours flew by.
Mid-afternoon, we pulled anchor and set out for Walter’s Cove, about a 15 mile run. A few fishing lodges, a tiny little variety store, and a phone booth with the handset cracked in half was about all there was there. I hadn’t made a credit card phone call in years and had to dial the operator to find out how to do it. I don’t dare to check my credit card bill how much the four minute call to check my voice mail was. The little store also had a 10’ x 10’ Post Office inside it that sold phone cards. The lady inside said that there was a coffee shop at the tip of the bay that had Internet and the owner would let me use his phone so we were off! Double the price of Starbuck’s and half as good, I was glad to be able to do some business again. Two hours later, we were glad to be out of there.
Val found this interesting cove on the charts only about seven miles away. We idled our way through the peppered rocks to get there in the drizzle and rain, the first we’ve seen on the trip. It was beautiful in a new, mysterious way. It seemed like we barely fit through the entrance of the cove which opened up into a cozy little nest for our boat. Perfect!
While the sun tried to burn holes in the clouds, Val baked some of my fresh bread dough and prepared the most amazing fresh halibut with a side of crab carbonara. It was exquisite to say the least. We ran out of wine (oh, the price for isolation) so we had to stoop down and open a bottle of Dolphin Cove Blackberry Wine…not the best pairing, but, hey, we’re roughing it.
It’s really getting dark earlier now…by 9, it’s really dark. The bioluminescence was so bright! We “swooshed” the boat brush around and watched the light reaction in the dark water. Connor started the dinghy engine and it looked like a white jet flame coming from the prop. Then he turned on the salt water wash down and made a mini meteor shower around the boat. I tried to photograph it and film it but it never turned out. There were thousands of little 9” fish jumping all around us too. We don’t know what they are but every once in a while a few thousand will ball up and jump out of the water like they’re being pursued, maybe by a seal or something. Interesting.
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
Day 9- Columbia Cove, Just South of Brooks Peninsula
This morning, I did some computer work while I had Internet and talked to the locals about what to do and where. Joe on Chapter 45 was an experienced cruiser on the West Coast of Van Isle and we poured over the charts together. Thanks, Joe!
Then, I had to go to the store and buy some new down rigger equipment as I lost the whole bottom end when I wasn’t paying attention and hooked the 10 lb. ball on a rock at 145’. Funny thing is, I had a fish on but it got my line all wrapped up in the rocks and I lost my flasher and that gear as well. A stupid $50 mistake on my part. Downriggers aren’t supposed to plow through under water hills!
We grabbed a quick bite to eat while tied to the dock at Winter Harbour and then decided to head out for a quick fishing trip to see if anything was biting. Val spotted another bear on the beach on our way out so we floated along with him for a bit. Of course, I had to stop at the only spot I knew that had a cell signal to check voice mails. An hour later, after drifting and chatting on the phone, we set sail again. Connor caught two nice Rock Fish but no salmon this time. We didn’t work at it that hard. It was fun just to be out there and even got to see a few more whales.
The wind was not too bad and dying down as the day went on. We decided to make the run around Brooks Peninsula. It was only 30 miles and this stretch is notorious for bad weather, currents, etc. but it seemed to so nice. I was glad I didn’t even have time to worry about it…we checked the 4PM forecast and decided it was as nice as it was going to get. No problem. We flew around at 30 MPH and never had to pull the throttles back once. Wow. God has granted us amazing travel mercies: smooth water, sunny skies, no mechanical issues. Everything is going just great.
We found this amazing cove called Columbia Cove. It’s a Jurassic Park like setting. It is so gorgeous here. The light is amazing. We snarfed down the leftover crab-stuffed salmon and all jumped in the dinghy to go exploring. We found an old Coast Guard cutter wreck and think we found a trail head to a beach…we’ll explore that tomorrow.
My GPS says we’ve logged 482 miles so far. Lately, we’ve only averaged maybe 20 miles a day. I like this pace a lot better although I could spend several days at each anchorage. I’m not getting near enough kayaking time in.
The moon is starting to show itself and the last of the sun is fading. It’s time for me to crawl into my cozy berth and do some reading. Connor is finishing his homework and Val is pouring over guide books, charts, and working on an exciting plan for the next few days. It feels like we’re flying by so many cool things to see and do but we have to cover a lot of ground to get back on time. We could spend years poking our way into all these coves and beaches but reality calls. For now, I’m going to ignore it. Sleep tight.