And guess what... it has not been raining! A little overcast in spots, but otherwise we have had the finest weather, seas and cruising imaginable. It has been truly amazing (photo evidence to follow). Sorry for the blog-lag, but here we go.
Day 8 had us go from Hakai to Ocean Falls, and on to to Shearwater to re-align our journey with Buttercup. Ocean Falls, the home of Dick Pound and other Olympic Swimmers, a forgotten, but once thriving, lumber mill-town. A reminder of how the last 100 years in our great country have gone for our natural resources. Feast and famine. Such a cool place, with an interesting history.
BC Ferries have reduced their service to Ocean Falls to this...
and the Museum Director is very part-time.
And the selfie tour continued at the Falls...
get used to it. :-)
We decided to book-it to Shearwater to catch Buttercup. We had a pub dinner and learned a few things about the indigenous Heiltsuk people and their language. Most importantly, we learned that they are very generous of spirit - thanks for the love, Brian at the Fishermen's Pub. Oh yeah, one other thing. We are making dock friends everywhere we go. Sailors and power boaters from St. Louis to Juneau. Everyone out here loves being here and has a similar passion for adventure. Including Kipper, the "Portie" from Anacortes, WA. Careful Tosh! No more dissing your Dad on Face Times. We got Kipper's number.
Perfect Pitch and Buttercup re-united!
Heiltsuk art and history and a "Portie" fix for a lonesome dog Dad.
On Day 9 we headed up Mathieson Channel, across Jackson Narrows and up Finlayson Channel to Bottleneck Inlet. What a day of boating. Challenging narrows and open ocean swells in Milbanke Sound. But Perfect Pitch was as smooth and nimble as a 52 foot (with tender), Coastal Craft can be. The feeling of flying across the open ocean, at 22 knots, on a 45 degree angle to the swell, bearing down on a light house, on a point of land ahead, and then banking hard starboard, to ride the smoothest part of the side swell into a tail push into the smooth water and the nooks and crannies at the mouth of Mathieson Channel is a feeling to be remembered forever.
Trees on a rock island and an Eagle guarding the headwaters at the start of Mathieson Channel
Captain Wiel navigating a VERY narrow section of Jackson Passage and then enjoying the Tender.
A couple of cool Dusk shots in Bottleneck Inlet - Buttercup to the East and the Moon to the West.
Day 10 we decided to go in search of bears in Poison Cove, on the southwest edge of the Fiordland Recreation Area. It was a blue-bird day and our First Mate guided us back out of Bottleneck, turned back up Finlayson Channel and was greeted by a whale no more than 20 yards off the bow of Perfect Pitch, seemingly coming to say good morning.
After fumbling for the camera, this shot is well after the whale passed by - IT'S choice to be so close!
There were whales everywhere, including seemingly trying to break into a fish farm. A very cool visual of a ribbon of snow, spilling into a waterfall, spilling into the ocean.
And we found our Grizzly! Poison Cove is a protected wildlife area for bears and it's early season, but this young one entertained for a bit then lay down in the grass to enjoy the sun. We came back up Mussel Inlet and settled in for the evening at a terrific anchorage in Windy Bay.
Our daily Selfie in kayaks at the mouth of a creek, spilling into the ocean, surrounded by a community of seals...where our determined swimmer exited the kayak for a dip in the Brackish water. The scenery along Mussel Inlet was awe inspiring. We narrowed 100+ pictures down to one...
And finally, Buttercup taking a picture of Perfect Pitch, taking a picture of Buttercup - it's a beauty contest out here on the high seas and our gorgeous gals are in the running wherever we go.