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Friday, September 17, 2010

"Messing about in boats."


Short... often... and full of photos! 
 That is what a good blog should be all about (thanks for the reminder, Myrna)... so even though I love to go on and on about what we're doing I promise that from now on I will do less 'talking' and more showing :-). 
Just thought I'd throw in this great little photo of some Quadra Island ocean life that my sister Carole and I saw last month to 'illustrate' my point!

Now...as Ratty solemnly says to Mole from my favourite book...  The Wind in the Willows written by Kenneth Grahame and published in 1908 (oh I could tell you ever so much about it... but that, I guess is for another blog... hmmmmm...)

...which was purchased for me by my beloved hubby, co-cap William, son Cam, and all my brothers and sisters-in-law and numerous other relatives and friends...for my... GULP!!!... 60th Birthday on September 8th this year... and by the way...
Who ever thinks they will ever get that old???)

Here I am at Arts on Atlantic (great little Inglewood gallery speciallizing in book arts) where I...
...pick up my new treasure...
Ooooooohhhhh...
Wow!

Co-cap Catherine proudly displaying her 'birthday book'...
...the most beautifully created Centary limited edition of Kenneth Grahame's Wind in the Willows illustrated by Charles Van Sandwyk of Vancouver, Canada...




"Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply...
One of Charles Van Sandwyk's cards

 ...messing about in boats!"
Now, you may think that since we are back in Calgary (yes, you got it right...smack in the middle of the Canadian prairies and thousands of miles from any ocean) with co-cap William hard at work in the hospital and me picking up contract work at local school libraries... that we are not messing about in boats... oh but you are sooooooo sooooooo wrong!! 

As we order, dream about, purchase and adjust our ever changing lists of "Things to buy" and "Things to do" for ever more new hardware, software, books, upholstery material, navigational technology, life raft, 'ditch bag', forward seeking sonar,...

...and pour over the full set of the Pilot Charts that we just bought (which tell us what to expect along our South Pacific journey in the way of the winds and currents)...
 ...and read and re-read books of our soon to be visited South Pacific destinations,

and continue to change, add to and check off more of our "To do" and "To buy" lists...

We are most definitely are...  

                                  ...messing about in boats!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Sailing Desolation Sound

We're baaaacccckkk... no we've not forgotten our blog nor you, our faithful readers, just busy with life...you know how it can be!

Bill has been working so hard lately that we finally decided we needed to get out sailing for a few days to remind ourselves how wonderful it is and why we are doing all of this!  Hence we flew to Quadra, bent the jib on and loaded Terrwyn ready to head for Desolation Sound... right at our back door, as it were!

Notice... no jib!!
Ready for the jib to be bent on...
...and then Terrwyn was ready to go!




We knew that our friends, Dan and Alice from Seattle 














 were sailing their 29' BCC, Shaula, in the area, in fact they had anchored right off Rebecca Spit just in front of our cottage for a few days earlier in the summer.  That was a nice surprise!

...and so we got in touch through Sailmail to meet up with them somewhere in Desolation Sound.

The day we headed out was a beautifully calm and sunny so we decided to do some fishing and also try taking a "noonsite' with our beautiful new sextant.  Bill has always wanted to own and really learn how to use the world's best sextant and now he owns one and in typical Bill fashion is madly studying all about it's use!  I, too, am learning celestial navagation but Bill is taking the lead on this one.




 As we trolled back and forth just south of Cape Mudge just off  Wilby Shoal (where the fish tend to gather, apparently!).... Bill did a successful noonsite with his beautiful new sextant...
... and once he "brought the sun to the horizon" (which is the hard part) I did one too...
...and how was the fishing you may ask??  Well, not one of those big or little fishes was willing to sacrifice him/herself to our delicious looking lure!... Huh!!
So with empty net but full of excitement we headed off to find Dan and Alice ...  whom we eventually found tucked in a little bay way up at the end of Pendrell Sound...

... and, after they finally caught our attention by turning on their strobe light as they watched us merrily scooting by, we zipped in and rafted up with them for the night... had dinner together with the main course being Greenling - delicious fish that Alice had caught that day...mmmmmm oh so good!  Since we had no fish to bring to the table (as it were) I did the rice and salad!

Of course we are constantly picking their brains, (Dan and Alice, that is, not the Greenling!)... about cruising as they have had 17 years experience of cruising in the South Pacific.

So Bill and Dan crawled all over both boats comparing and discussing details and ideas!
  The next day we headed down Pendrell Sound to our next destination, which was a little anchorage in behind a tiny island called Ellworthy Island, at the bottom of the Sound. While sailing there we had our first experience of "willy waws" or "unpredictable sudden, strong gusts of wind down drafts" sweeping down from the high hills surrounding the Sound...keeps you on your toes, that's for sure!
video
When we finally had to head back to Quadra thick fog had rolled in and a Scotch mist added to the magical feeling as we sailed along.

 We took that opportunity to practise using our Nobletec digital navigation charts and radar.  The digital charts showed us not only where we currently were but also where we were heading (nice to know about that large rocky island hidden in the fog just off our port bow)... and our trusty radar let us know if there were any boats or other nasty obstacles in our way that wouldn't show up on our charts!
Phew!!  We made it safely back ready for our next adventure!