Aug. 20 – Back Home

Upon reaching Port Hardy we learned that we are needed elsewhere so we quickly arranged transportation back to Bend. It was awesome flying over the route we would have taken by boat, seeing the tops of the towering mountains pockmarked with blue freshwater lakes fed by the lingering snow fields. Robert hand carried a 50 pound box of frozen fish through 3 airports! We missed one flight and had to wait several hours at the Vancouver, B.C. airport for the next flight to Portland. Luckily the hotel there had a convenient walk-in freezer for the fish (I guess they’re used to frozen fish passing through!). We were rescued at the Portland airport by a friend who drove from Bend to pick us up and drive us back to Bend! We enjoyed a neighborhood meal a few days later, entre of grill-roasted chicken provided by grill-meister Robert!

Chickens flavored with fresh herbs from my window boxes and spice mix by Pat! Yummy!

Aug. 15 – Milbrook Cove

We anchored in Milbrook Cove, a tiny cove with a tricky entrance, yet it still sheltered 6 boats overnight! Robert has been reading a book Dean had onboard; Glaciers, Bears and Totems, and I noticed that one of the boats looks like the sailboat pictured on the inside flap of the book. Sure enough, it’s the Osprey.

“Glaciers, Bears and Totems is a rich book of adventure travel that is as valuable for its reading fun as for its travel information.” Amazon book review

Their blog Voyages North very accurately describes the next day, Aug. 16, as we traveled past Cape Caution and across Queen Charlotte Strait to Port Hardy on the north coast of Vancouver Island. An eerie, foggy experience, we saw only one other boat as it emerged out of the fog briefly then vanished as we passed it!

Aug. 15 – Sailing Along

We spent 2 days at Shearwater, doing laundry, catching up on computer work and enjoying the sunshine. We headed south again on a beautiful sunny day.

We saw our first sail boat with a sail up in Fitz Hugh Sound.

We also encountered a whale breaching dozens of times and slapping his fin on the surface.

Aug. 13 – Land Ho!

We headed south in a misty rain. Princess Royal Island is known as the habitat of the Spirit Bears, a race of blonde-colored black bears, elusive and seldom seen. The writers’ of a blog; Another Side of this Life, were lucky to see and photograph a Spirit Bear near Klemtu, a Native village further south along the channel. We encountered choppy seas and fog crossing Milbanke Sound and we were happy to spot Ivory Island Lighthouse at the entrance to the channel leading to Bella Bella and Shearwater, B.B.

You can tell the wind was brisk by the attitude of Canada’s Maple Leaf Flag.


Aug. 12 – Butedale

We had a great trip down Princess Royal Channel, separating Princess Royal Island from the mainland, past the ghost town of Butedale.

An abandoned cannery town, a popular stop for cruisers on the Inside Passage.

A view along Princess Royal Channel.

We anchored in a small channel behind a sand spit and the guys went out in the dingy to catch fish that were jumping everywhere. We were joined by a sea lion and a whale after dark, we could hear them splashing and breathing in the pitch darkness. The next morning I watched a trio of bald eagles along the bank, apparently a family. The larger, mature eagle flew to the water’s edge, stuck her head completely under water and pulled a salmon carcass up onto the rocky beach. Immediately an immature eagle flew over and latched onto the fish with it’s talons. The older bird flew off while the younger bird struggled pulling the fish further up the bank until it was satisfied and finally began to feed.