After leaving Victoria we worked our way up the Strait of Georgia sailing whenever possible; at least a little while each day. Along the way the pressure water pump started leaking like a sieve and running almost continuously. We started turning off the circuit breaker whenever we were done using the water. This rapidly got very old and we stopped in Nanaimo to replace it. We anchored in Nanaimo Harbor. The next morning we took the dinghy into town and found a good chandlery (with a serious pirate motif) that just happened to have a 24V variable-speed pressure water pump that fit the bill and only took about 20 minutes to swap out.
On the way up the strait of Georgia from Nanaimo to Campbell River we had a gentle, little, low wind, fully intentional jibe, and the second to last wooden boom on Lungta snapped smartly in two. It was the mainsail boom so we spent the next few days sailing with only 4 of 5 sails.
There’s no harbor in Campbell River so we crossed Discovery Passage to Gowlland Harbour where we spent the night; there are lots of bald eagles here. David’s plane was diverted from Campbell River to April Point Resort due to … low tide! (Go figure. :)) Fortunately since we just happened to have anchored near there the night before, the four of us took the dinghy to the resort dock and watched a couple of Bald Eagles snatching salmon entrails from the water. (folks from the resort were cleaning the fish and tossing them into the water for us to watch.) Wow! It was a perfect photo op and the eagles made the most of it.
Watching my father fly off in the little sea plane was very sad. I don’t know when I’ll see him again. The day after dropping David off we headed up to Desolation Sound for a few days of poking around some spectacular and remote coastline. Desolaton Sound is breath-takingly beautiful. The first half hour after we arrived the three of us were all whispering as if we’d just stepped into a cathedral. We arrived around 9pm, and went for an hour’s paddle during a blazing sunset. The next day we took the dinghy out to a small island nearby that our friend Sergei had mentioned to us. We tromped through the rain-forest enjoying the huge trees and lovely ferns. We poked around the tidepools a bit, especially enjoying the brilliant purple starfish. This is one of the most spectacular places we’ve all been, and it sounds like there’s more to come as we continue our way north.
On Monday we pulled into Campbell River to fix the burned up VHF antenna…Oh wait, did we forget to mention the little fire that broke out while we were away from the boat exploring Desolation Sound in the dinghy? It was a really small fire and a really nice guy from a neighboring boat was nice enough to grab a fire extinguisher and put it out. Sometimes I am SO glad we have a cement boat! We think we’ve figured out what caused the short.
On the way back from Desolation Sound to Campbell River we spent a half an hour watching three Orca dining at the foot of Quadra Island.
Now we’re staying in the government marina in Campbell River, repairing some of the things that we mentioned above (boom, antenna – you were paying attention, weren’t you?) We’ve repaired the tear in the sail that the boom made when it swung down from the broken end. We’ve spliced the antenna wire and reworked it into the fitting in the deck. We’ve bought a 20′, schedule 40 aluminum tube and we’re in the process of removing the stainless end caps from the old boom and re-attaching them to the new one. We expect to finish that up tomorrow, hopefully in time to catch the mid-day slack tide as we head up into the Seymour Narrows and Johnstone Strait beyond.
We’ve consistantly met wonderful people as we’ve traveled. In Desolation Sound We met Julius and Suzanne, on Emerald Steel, a beautiful steel gaff rigged 38 footer. We hope they remain friends for years to come. In Campbell River we’ve met Alex and Ramona and last night the five of us shared a really nice dinner on Lungta with some VERY fresh Sockeye Salmon.
More to come, I’m sure, and we’ll catch you up the next time we have an internet connection…
– Dan & Kathy