Sunday, July 20, 2014

Road trip down the length of Vancouver Island

We left Haida Gwaii a little sooner than we wanted, but we’ll be back someday.  After taking the two ferry’s back to Port Hardy, we grabbed Gary and Karina’s car (Karina had driven up meet Sea Rover) and started to head south. First stop was an interesting cave formation at Little Huson Caves.
Water flowing under the natural bridge at Little Huson Caves

Next stop was in Bamfield to meet our friend Jennifer and Campell on their boat Camdeboo (http://www.camdeboo.ca/). They’d previously sailed Camdeboo to the South Pacific and back, and are now spending their sailing time around Vancouver Island.  We spent 4 days on Camdeboo exploring the Broken Group Islands.  The scenery was different than we’d seen on our trip so far. It was a lot more wind swept and the morning fog off the Pacific added an extra dimension to it all. Jennifer and Campbell made up some grand story about seeing lots of bears feeding along the shore.  We know they made it all up because we certainly didn’t see any, although we tried.
Beach with windswept trees at Bamfield

We left Jennifer and Campbell to sail back to Victoria while we drove there.  We met up with Heather again and Dina’s Aunt Peggy came over from Port Angeles to spend the day with us. We took Aunt Peggy to explore the beautiful Buchart Garden’s (http://www.butchartgardens.com/) and downtown Victoria including the Empress Hotel. Then we said good bye as we dropped her back at the ferry to Port Angeles.

"Good as Gold" rose


We seem to have good timing, as later that evening our sailing club, Blue Water Cruising Association (http://www.bluewatercruising.org/), was having a little get together.  Jennifer and Campbell had by now gotten home, so we picked them up and went to the party.  There were a few other couples there who also had left their boats in Mexico and flown home to avoid the heat and possible hurricanes.  One such couple was Jim and Trish, on Falcon VII, who we’d spent several days sailing with in Bahia Conception.  It was fun to catch up with them and our other friends from the club.


The next day we went back to Vancouver and stayed with Rob and Deborah, who we spent some time with in Mexico as well (wine tasting in Ensenada, New Year’s).  Their boat, Avant, is waiting for them in Mexico as well. After a few fun days with Rob and Deb, including some great Dim Sum, we had to head to Ontario to see our younger daughter Zophia and some other friends.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Haida Gwaii – Morseby Explorers

We took a ferry from Port Hardy at the north end of Vancouver Island up through the “inside passage” to Prince Rupert near the Alaska border. This is the same route the Alaska cruise ships take.  Obviously the scenery was awesome, with lots of mountains and lots of waterfalls and rapids emptying into the ocean.  From Prince Rupert we hopped on another ferry to Haida Gwaii (aka Queen Charlotte Islands). 

The following morning we met up with our tour guide from Moresby Explorers (http://moresbyexplorers.com/ ) and began our 4 day zodiac trip to some of the old Haida villages in the park and other sites.  It’s hard to describe in just a few words, so the photos will have do.

Moss and forest

Recent carving

Forest board walk

Ancient Haida poles

Ancient Haida poles

Remains of a Haida house (post European contact)

Dina walking - Haidi village site

Dock supports from 1910s Japanese Clam cannery

Gravestone at 1940s mine site

Old shoes at a 1940s mine site


Young eagle soaring above us

By the wind sailors (a type of jelly fish) - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velella

Fried Egg Jellyfish - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phacellophora_camtschatica


Thursday, July 3, 2014

Sea Rover (Vancouver to Port Hardy)

We flew back to Vancouver at the end of May.  The plan was to visit our older daughter Heather in Victoria and meet her new boyfriend Alex. Then we’d spend the month of June helping Gary get his boat, Sea Rover, up toward Port Hardy while his wife Karina spent another month going to work.  

We followed the plan and spent a few days in Victoria and then went back to Vancouver to jump on Sea Rover. Our departure was delayed a bit while we helped Gary and Karina get a FEW last minute jobs finished on their boat.  For everyone who knows Gary or knows sailboats, you’ll understand what a FEW jobs entail. So after 30+ days of boat work we departed Vancouver on Sea Rover and headed north.  
Karina fixing something under the floor Karina re-attaching the ceiling panels

The trip was pretty good and included a visit at Karina’s parents place near Nanaimo, a great sail north toward Campbell River, some great cinnamon buns and great fresh bread (thanks Gary!). With Karina scheduled to meet us at the end of June we had a few extra days so we explored The Broughton’s.  It was an area that interested us and it didn’t disappoint.  In fact, it was nice enough that after picking Karina up in Port McNeil the four of us spent another few days in The Broughton’s before Gary and Karina dropped us off and went exploring on their own.
Lacy Falls

Minke

Humpback flukes

Flowers