Tag Archives | Selene

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 11

It has been one month since we have posted, for a reason.  We all the emphasis on individual privacy, we have chosen not to post pictures of our friends and family.  The locations we have cruised have all been documented in previous years, so…

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 10 – Takatz Bay to Sitka

May 25, 2018

The winds kicked up last night, but Takatz Bay is well protected, with little fetch to build up any waves.  The SE winds reflect off the hills and come back as NE winds, which gusted to 25.4 knots before quieting down the rest of the evening.  The rain arrived as predicted and we spent the day doing routine maintenance and relaxing.  One other pleasure craft seemed to have the same idea, so it was just the two boats anchored in the bay, drifting slowly around their anchors, washed down by the continual rain.

The brown bear we saw at low tide on the beach did not re-appear today.

The evening was consumed with watching a movie, “Jumanji into the Jungle”, good for some laughs.

May 26, 2018

As predicted, the winds arrived in the morning, with heavy rain and cool temperatures (low 40’s).  The peak wind gusts are forecast to be in the vicinity of 40 knots later in the day.  A good day to be in a secure anchorage.

After charging the batteries and making water, we let the genset cool somewhat and then changed oil and oil filters, also finding a loose electrical connection on the main neutral lead on the generator housing.  This connection has loosened before and needs a better locking mechanism.  There are too many wires on the same bolt.  We also cleaned the plankton and 5 micron pre-filters on the watermaker since they were getting clogged and would have caused a low inlet pressure shutdown before many more gallons were produced.

As evening approached, the winds continued to gust hard, reaching 31 knots and coming from several directions.  By 2200, the bay was calm once again as the rain returned.

May 27, 2018

Surprise, there was sun shining through the clouds in the morning, and the winds were calm,so we decided to leave and head for an anchorage somewhere in Peril Strait.  Exiting Takatz Bay, the conditions in Chatham were somewhat gruesome, winds steady at 20-25 with gusts to 32 from the SE, and 4-6 foot seas on our starboard quarter.  Fortunately, we only had to endure the rolling corkscrew motions for two hours until we turned the corner into Peril Strait.

A still morning in TakatzBay

Conditions were initially good, then the wind and seas again filled in on our stern until we turned again at Nismeni Point.  From that point on, the seas were flat.  We decided to anchor for the evening in Baby Bear Cove and after entering, found a sailboat anchored in our favorite location, with both bow and stern lies to shore blocking entrance into the most protected part of the cove.

We anchored a short distance away in 50 feet of water and launched the tender for exploration, mapping out the reef near the entrance and checking out a new possibility for anchoring in the southern portion of the bay.  The entrance to the southern arm gets down to 12 feet at half tide, but the inner cove is flat and should be good holding.  At a minus tide we probably would be trapped in the cove.

Anchorage in Baby Bear Bay
We travelled an additional 53 nautical miles today, bringing the total to 976 miles since leaving Anacortes.  We are now only 30 nautical miles from Sitka.

The rain returned late in the evening.

May 28, 2018

Overnight the wind gusted as promised, with our wind gauge registering 42.5 knots.  Our anchor was set well and we barely heard the wind.  There is no fetch in the bay, so even if the wind blows, there is no wave action.

Patrick set two crab pots in Deep Bay, just across the channel from Baby Bear Bay, about 2.5 nautical miles away.  An afternoon check showed all females, no keepers.  The 8PM check yielded 4 nice hard shell Dungeness crab.

The weather front has passed over, mostly, and the wind is now out of the north at 5-10 knots.

May 29, 2018

The morning check of the carb traps yielded 2 more hardshell crabs and a number of large soft shell crabs.  After, cooking, cleaning and freezing the haul, we pulled the anchor from the sticky black mud in Baby Bear Bay at 1145 and continued west/south in Sergius Narrows.  Exiting Kakul Narrows we headed west in Salisbury Sound and fished for several hours, with one strike and no other action.  We finally anchored in Kalinin Bay at 1630, a familiar anchorage.  We were initially the only vessel, but about 2000 another pleasure craft entered and anchored near us.

Kalinin Bay 

May 30, 2018

At 0545, getting a late start on fishing, we pulled the anchor and headed out fishing.  There was no action, even going offshore to Cape Georgiana, where we spotted several charter boats is the same location, also not catching anything.

Bears feeding and watching us leave for fishing
After 6 hours of nothing but the occasional rockfish, we headed back and re-anchored in Kalinin Bay.  In the process of anchoring we discovered the primary anchor roller fasteners had loosened and one had fallen out.  We quickly reconfigured and used the secondary Bruce anchor and then replaced the missing fasteners.  The anchor roller design is poor, and we have yet to come up with a permanent solution to the loose fasteners.  By late afternoon there were six boats anchored in the bay.

Eagle Fishing in Kalinin Bay

Evening in Kalinin Bay

As the sun set,the colors became spectacular
May 31, 2018

Another 0545 start, but we were the third boat out of the bay.  Fishing was equally fruitless, so at 0900 we headed for Sitka.  
Our only excitement were two Stellar Sea Lions swimming around our downriggers.  
Looking for a handout
Another dream gone awry near Olga Strait.
At 1200 we pulled into “A” float in the south harbor, a slip we have been in before.

Eagles waiting on the fish cleaning tables in Sitka Harbor
Our log now shows 1045 nautical miles since leaving Anacortes.

As soon as the engine cooled down, we changed the main engine oil and picked up the parts at the US Post Office to rebuild the salt water washdown pump, parts we had ordered while out in Frederick Sound 10 days earlier.

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 9 – Petersburg to Takatz

May 19, 2018

Saturday was a lazy day in Petersburg; Patrick replaced engine zincs and cleaned sea strainers.  We made our final grocery trips.  The day was still sunny, but cool once out of the direct sun.  The morning was livened by the kid’s fishing derby, with the docks lined with kids and parents trying their luck.

May 20, 2018

Spirit was underway at 0646, riding the ebb tide out of Wrangell Narrows and then west in Frederick Sound.  We left in rain, which lifted briefly, then started again heavier as we approached Cannery Cove.  Winds remained less than 15 knots and seas were calm.  There was very little other traffic, just a couple of fishing boats and several pleasure craft.

There are usually lots of whales in Frederick Sound, but today we only spied two distant spouts. 

We arrived and had the anchor down in Cannery Cove at 1256, just behind a large sailing yacht that beat us in by 10 minutes.  Our first choice of locations was too close to the other boat for our comfort, given the prediction of a SE gale overnight and, so we moved and re-anchored in 50 feet of water on one of our other 2016 anchor marks further out in the cove.  Then the rain really started.  When the low clouds lifted, we could see snow down to below 500 feet on the hills surrounding the head of the bay.  The rain was so heavy we decided to keep the Apex inflatable on-board and forgo prawning, especially with the weather prediction.

We will spend 2 nights here due to predicted inclement weather for a crossing of Chatham Strait tomorrow, with winds in excess of 40 knots and 8-foot seas.

Heading west in Frederick Sound in light rain

Cannery Cove before the deluge began

May 21, 2018

Overnight we had lots of motion as the wind swirled into Pybus Bay.  The bay is not nearly as protected from SE winds as the cruising guides indicate.  We believe the wind reflects off the hills and changes direction by nearly 90 degrees coming into the bay.  Also, the waves coming up West Channel wrap around the point and into Cannery Cove.  So, instead of protection from the SE, the winds and waves were coming directly into the bay from the NE.  The rain was torrential, never letting up, just getting blown sideways as the wind gusted to 30 knots.  The air temperature hit a high of 49 degrees; no wonder the snow is still so low on the hillsides.  We were glad we did not have to go and pull prawn pots or even go outside on the deck.

Cannery Cove where SE winds and Waves wrap around into the bay

In the afternoon, the crew of the sailing yacht “Delphina” anchored near us, brought over excess crab, which we will cook later this evening.  Their pots were full, more than their limits.

As the afternoon wore on, the waves entering the bay continued to increase and the combination of wind and current kept us broadside to the waves, very uncomfortable.  The heavy rains have increased the outflow from the streams and turned the surface water muddy brown over most of the cove.

With the heavy rains and low temperatures, soup sounded good for dinner, so even with the rolling motions we prepared a big pot of split pea with ham soup and watched a couple of episodes of “Blue Planet II”, a series we started watching at home and then purchased the Blu-ray DVD to take with us.  The wind and seas gradually decreased and by 2100 we were back to calm seas and moderate winds.

May 22, 2018

The weather front passed over during the night, so the seas were calm, just some residual wind and continued cool temperatures, in the upper 40’s.

We pulled the anchor and 260 feet of chain from the sticky mud in Cannery Cove at 0700 and headed to Henry’s Arm to investigate it as an alternate anchorage in a SE gale.  The entrance is easy to negotiate, and the water was still inside, with virtually no wind, even though it was blowing 15 knots outside.  There is room for several boats to anchor in 50 feet of water.  The barge shown on all our charts is gone, just a floating log sticking out from shore.

Heading down West Channel we re-entered Frederick Sound, riding the ebb tide to Yasha Island.  The expected ebb current in Chatham Strait was not present, probably due to the 20-knot southerly wind and residual swell from the previous day’s storm.

We entered Red Bluff Bay at 1215, quickly out of the wind and waves in Chatham, and by 1300 we were anchored at the head of the bay, the only boat for the present.

The red bluffs at the entrance to the bay
Anchor location in Red Bluff Bay

Anchored with a great view of the falls

Our neighbors on Luck Dragon

 After a lunch of leftover soup from last night, Patrick took the prawn traps to our favorite location.  Returning to Spirit, the sun alternated with the rain as we enjoyed the view of the waterfall from our anchorage.  We looked for bears on the river delta where we had seen them before, but, alas, none were to be seen.  Later in the afternoon, the Diesel Duck “Luck Dragon” anchored near us.  We have met them several times over the last few years and they are headed the same direction as us in the morning, although they intend to leave at 0500.  We hope we are still asleep, although it will have been light for several hours.

Also disappointing was the evening check of the prawn traps.  Other than 2 small fish, there were only 10 prawns between three traps.  We did see sea otters today, they may have already devastated the prawns and crab.

May 23, 2018

Obviously, our favorite location for prawns must change.  After pulling the anchor, Patrick headed to the traps and Miriam brought Spirit down and drifted as Patrick hauled the traps.  There were only 2 dozen large prawns, hardly enough for an appetizer.

Morning in Red Bluff Bay

Heading out of Red Bluff Bay shortly after 0800 we encountered moderate North winds and 1-2 foot chop.  Just off Nelson Bay stood a bank of fog, with visibility of less than ¼ mile.  The fog persisted until just south of Warm Springs Bay.  Entering the bay, we found an open spot on the new dock, which now charges for moorage.  The dock seems to be in the same location as before but constructed well with a new gangway.  The reef off the end is still there, and at higher tides the current makes docking a challenge.

New dock in Warm Springs Bay

New Ramp – much better
The public bathhouse is unchanged, and Patrick enjoyed a leisurely soak in one of the three tubs; each one in its own room.

May 24, 2018
The weather report calls for another front to come in from the SE on Friday and Saturday, with winds to 30 knots and 6-8 foot seas in Chatham..  Since we have a few days before we need to be in Sitka, we have decided to fish a little in the open fishery near Hidden Falls and then anchor in Takatz Bay for several days.
We fished for several hours and only hooked one black rockfish, enough for fish tacos.
By 1015 we were anchored in Takatz Bay with two other boats, both of whom were in Warm Springs with us the night before.
Our anchorage in Takatz Bay

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 8 – Petersburg

May 18, 2018Another sunny but cool day in Petersburg when the sun streaming in our stateroom windows woke us.  We took off uptown, looking at all the booths that had sprung up overnight.  There were at least three beer gardens, people dressed…

Alalska 2018 Blog Post 7 – Wrangell to Petersburg

May 13, 2018

After docking Spirit, Patrick walked the 1 ½ miles to town and found the hardware store still open to purchase a shop vacuum to clean out the Diesel Kabola heater, which had sooted up badly.  Patrick made it with minutes to spare, since everything closed at 3:00 PM.  We decided on Mother’s Day dinner  at the Stikine Inn, at the bar, since the place was so crowded for Mother’s Day.  Food and service was great, with large portions good for several meals.

Heritage Harbor near low tide
May 14, 2018

The rain returned and stayed all day, so we cleaned the Kabola Heater with the new shop vacuum; the heater now runs fine.  Patrick also cleaned the watermaker filters and did general engine checks, as well as arranging a main engine service check on May 17 in Petersburg.

Nearly Deserted main street in Wrangell

Wall Art is becoming common

More wall art in Wrangell
May 15, 2018

A sunny day in Wrangell, with walks into town and slow cooking a pork shoulder in BBQ sauce so we could have dinner with cruising friends on the Selene 53 “Tranquility”.  Rick and Pat Lennon arrived from Montana and we had a relaxing evening on board with the slow cooked pork, preceded by spot prawn cocktails.

Miriam and Lennon’s sharing spot prawns

Our version of a spot prawn cocktail
May 16, 2018

The morning was sunny, but cold, only 46 degrees.  We cast off the lines at 0855 and headed west towards Vank and Sokolof islands.  The channel between Vank and Sokolof Islands has high currents.  In Sumner Strait, the flood current past Station Island increased to more than 2 knots against us..  Entering Wrangell Narrows at Point Alexander at 1158, we were boosted by the flood current, at times reaching 4 knots.  The helpful current persisted until Green Point.

We were early for docking in the sometimes-high currents in Petersburg Harbor, especially since we were assigned a slip in the newer North Harbor, closer to town but more exposed to the current in Wrangell Narrows. We slowed down and timed our arrival closer to slack water and at 1432 were tied up at slip 35 in the North Harbor, having come only 40 nautical miles since Wrangell.

Our view out the wheelhouse windows is great, north down the entrance to the narrows with the mountains and glaciers across Frederick Sound providing a great backdrop.

View from the wheelhouse in Petersburg
The “Little Norway” festival starts tomorrow and runs through Sunday, with parades, dinners, herring toss contests and generally fun for all.  The Little Norway festival is centered around May 17, Norwegian Independence Day.  We were last here for the festival in 2015.

May 17, 2018

Another sunny day in Petersburg.  We have engine maintenance scheduled at “Piston & Rudder” at 1000, near low tide.  Low tide this morning is -3.5 feet.  We left our slip at 0900 and were at the shop at 0910.  By the time the brief servicing was complete, the flood tide was flowing at 4.3 knots, too fast to even leave the float at the shop, so we waited for the current to subside and took care of other miscellaneous maintenance tasks like replacing a failed GFCI outlet on the flybridge.  By 1500 the currents were low enough that we returned to North Harbor, backing into our slip with a 3 knot current pushing into the slip.   We were thankful for bow and stern thrusters.

This boat has been lying on the beach for years, no thrusters!

2018-07 What Comes DOWN Must Go UP, or Avoiding the "Baja Bash"

May 15, 2018In October-November, 2017 the Wild Blue cruised down the California and Mexican Coasts to La Paz, Mexico.  This downwind-downswell run is, and was, quite enjoyable.  Cruising up these Coasts, that is upwind and upwave, is less so….

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 6 – Ketchikan to Wrangell

May 9, 2018

We woke to the sound of rain on the deck.  The rain persisted all day, sometimes light, sometimes moderately heavy.  There was only one cruise ship in town today, the Zaandam, and all the shops catering to the passengers were in full operation.  This was the Zaandam’s first Alaskan port of call and many of the passengers looked miserable sloshing through the puddles, with inadequate clothing such as skirts, shorts, high heels and flipflops, for the 50-degree wet weather.  There must have also been a sale on clear plastic ponchos due to the number of them in sight.

Our morning was spent walking to the Safeway near Bar Harbor and replenishing our fresh provisions and dumping the garbage.  Even our raingear leaked a little.

About 1730, just after the Zaandam left, a fierce squall blew through, with very heavy nearly horizontal rain and winds to over 30 knots.  We were glad to be tied to the dock!  By 1800 the wind was down to 5 knots and the rain was only moderate.

May 10, 2018

After washing the salt from the boat and filling the water tanks, we played tourist and walked downtown, window shopping and watching the 6000+ passengers invade the downtown area.  The jewelry and souvenir stores were filled, especially when the rain began once again.  We stopped for lunch at the Alaska Fish House and had some good fish and chips, as well as some smoked salmon chowder.  Late in the afternoon the sun appeared, and it stayed nice all evening.

May 11, 2018

Spirit slipped the mooring lines from the dock at 0710 to take advantage of the flood tide as we headed up Tongass Narrows in occasional rain and low clouds.  Heading up Clarence Strait, the wind increased to 15-20 knots from the south as predicted, but a favorable current persisted until we turned the corner at Lemesurier Point into Ernest Sound.  This location is good for Coho salmon later in the year.  We bypassed Meyers Chuck since the only attraction, the art gallery, is closed this time of year.  Just before passing Meyers Chuck we spotted our first whale spout of the season.  Traversing Ernest Sound we spied several more Humpback whales before turning into Santa Anna Inlet.  The anchor was down and set at 1330 after a 54 mile run from Ketchikan.  By 1430 three prawn traps were in place in our favorite spot.

We found the inlet to be infested with jellyfish, not a problem until they clog the generator sea strainer and shut the generator down.

Jellyfish in Santa Anna Inlet

More abstract art jellyfish

A check of the traps at 2000 yielded 6 quarts headed spot prawns, the daily limit for two persons.

May 12, 2018

After a quiet night at anchor, with only the sounds of a gurgling stream on shore to keep us company, Patrick headed out to check the prawn traps.  A disappointingly small number of prawns were there, with two of the three pots empty, as well as the bait containers.  Still, there were several quarts of headed prawns.  The afternoon pull completed our prawn limits for the day.

Our limit of spot prawns

Most prawns were large
With occasional light rain showers throughout the day, we stayed inside and re-organized our storage, making room in the second guest stateroom for Josie, our grand-daughter, who arrives in a month.  It was a good chance to inventory the supplies and get rid of excess stuff, which will be discarded in Wrangell.

Low tides revealed more of the rusting machinery on the beach, which has been slowly rusting away since our first visit to Santa Anna Inlet in 2010.

Rusting machinery on beach
May 13, 2018

The morning check of the prawn traps was again disappointing, just a few.  After putting the tender back on deck, we pulled the anchor at 0815 and headed up Seward Passage, which even on a flood tide seems to ebb south.  Spirit entered Zimovia Strait accompanied by several porpoises, and several whales spouting in front of Thoms Place.  Exiting Zimovia Strait we encountered the muddy waters of the Stikine River the rest of the way to Wrangell.

Entering Zimovia Strait
New wreck on the beach in Zimovia Strait
Spirit was moored in Heritage Harbor at 1245 after a 36 nautical mile run.

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 5 Port McNeill to Ketchikan

May 4, 2018

Our alarm was set for 0500 for a 0535 departure from North Island Marina, not even fully light.  The winds were calm with light rain, which persisted until noon.  We set a course across Neill Ledge, through a 40 feet deep gap between the kelp patches and headed for Pulteney Point.  From Pulteney Point we headed for Gordon Channel, boosted by a modest ebb current.

Reaching Davey Rock, the seas were so smooth we took a shortcut through Bolivar Passage and behind Storm Islands to shave a few miles from our traditional route around Pine Island.

As Spirit approached Cape Caution we encountered a low westerly swell, perhaps 1 meter.  Cape Caution was abeam at 1035, just five hours after leaving Port McNeill.  Turning towards Egg Island, the swells moved to our beam and then our port quarter as Calvert Island began to protect us.

Cape Calvert was abeam at 1240 PM as we headed in glassy smooth water up Fitz Hugh Sound to Kwakshua Channel and the entrance to Pruth Bay on Calvert Island, our anchorage destination for the evening.  We knew it was early in the season since the top of Calvert Island was still covered in snow.

Kwakshua Channel
Spirit was the only vessel anchored in front of the Hakai Beach Institute, so we were closer than we have ever been to the lodge.  After some tries, we were able to get logged on to the guest wireless internet, where you are allowed 300 Mb per day of free service, even though there is no cell phone service.

Hakaii Beach Institute in the AM

May 5, 2018

After a leisurely breakfast of avocado toast with soft poached eggs, we pulled the anchor from the sand bottom of Pruth Bay at 0640 and headed up the relatively narrow channel between Hecate and Rattenbury Islands, across Hakai Pass and into Ward Channel.  The transit of Ward Channel takes only about 10 minutes and we exited into Nalau Passage.  By 0810 we had re-entered Fitz Hugh Sound, under clear skies and a 10 knot north wind.  Looking back down Fitz Hugh Sound we could see the dense fog bank still covering Cape Caution.

Morning reflections in Pruth Bay
Spirit was running against an ebb current, which slowed us down by 1.5 knots until we turned into Lama Passage at 1015.  When we could see Bella Bella, we regained cell phone coverage which lasted as we passed Dryad Point and headed down Seaforth Channel to Ivory Island Light at 1315.  Heading out into Milbanke Sound, coverage disappeared.

The exposure to the low westerly swell of 3-4 feet, mostly on the beam, only lasted for a little more than 1 hour, until we turned into Finlayson Channel at 1410.

Approaching Klemtu, we once again had cell phone coverage all the way up Finlayson Channel until we turned into Bottleneck Inlet at 1630.  The entrance to Bottleneck is shallow and narrow, but we entered near high tide and showed a minimum depth over the entrance bar of 22 feet, which correlates well to the chart datum of 9 feet at lowest tides.

View from Bottleneck Inlet
By 1644 the anchor was down in 32 feet of water.  The 7-10 knot winds through the entrance kept us lined up with the entrance.  Just as in Pruth Bay, we were the only vessel anchored.  Today Spirit logged an additional 82 nautical miles.

We dined on a marinated pork tenderloin accompanied by a rustic hash of baby potatoes, onions, peppers and fresh rosemary, with a green salad garnished with avocados.  We are only three days from Ketchikan and US Customs, so need to eat the fresh food not allowed across the border.

As the sun set, the wind died completely, and we floated aimlessly around the anchor as we enjoyed some cooking shows on the satellite TV, still working even in the narrow and steep sided inlet.

May 6, 2018

Our departure from Bottleneck Inlet was at 0600, to take advantage of a high tide through the entrance and to minimize the adverse current Hiekish Narrows, 8 miles further up the channel.

The weather was settled, with clear skies, and minimal winds at first.  Aside from the BC Ferry Northern Adventure, which passed us shortly after exiting the narrows, Princess Royal Channel was deserted.  The ebb current ranged up to 2 knots against us and there were periodic bands of wind and chop.  Slowing down for photos of Butedale, which disintegrates more every year, we looked at the dock which appears to be in better shape than previous trips.  The place looked deserted, not even any smoke from the caretaker’s house, nor any call on the radio inviting us to stop.

Butedale 2018
Our only company in Princess Royal Channel
The wind picked up to 20-25 knots at the top of Princess Royal Channel, with 3 foot seas to match, which persisted until we entered Grenville Channel “the ditch”, which stretches nearly straight for 50 miles.

Our anchorage for the evening is Lowe Inlet, just 15 miles up the Grenville Channel, just before the narrow portion, only 1/4 mile wide.  Lowe Inlet is a marine park and we usually anchor in Nettle Basin, which is mostly 80-100 feet deep, right in front of Verney Falls.  The flow from the falls keeps the boat aligned with the current rather than swinging all night.  That was the plan, but the National Geographic  Quest was anchored in Nettle Basin.  We negotiated an anchorage location and one hour later the Quest left us alone except for “Yachette”.  With sunny weather and 70 degree temperatures it was a pleasant evening in Lowe Basin.

Spirit in Lowe Inlet
May 7, 2018

The anchor was pulled up at 0546 as both Spirit and Yachette left Nettle Basin to take advantage of the last of the of the northbound flood tide in the narrow portion of Grenville Channel.  The ebb currents can reach 4 knots quickly, really extending the time in Grenville.

We were called by VTS as we proceeded north, warning us about a boat hard aground on the west side of the channel north of Morning Reef.  Sure enough, a 25-30 foot aluminum boat had the bow up in the trees.  VTS requested we slow to no wake speed passing by to minimize further damage since the stern was still in the water.

The weather on Chatham Sound was initially good, then the afternoon westerlies started and the winds eventually gusted to 28 knots and a short, steep sea developed on our port quarter.  As we passed Green Island, the seas flattened and when we turned in corner into Dixon Entrance at 1500, the wind had slackened to 15 knots, with the swell and wind chop on the port bow.  

Green Island Light just before Dixon Entrance

We crossed into US waters at 1535.   By the time we reached Tree Point the wind had fallen to 5 knots, the sea was flat except for a 2 foot low westerly swell.  We were pleasantly surprised at near continuous cell phone coverage until we reached outer Foggy Bay.  Threading our way though the channel, we joined two other boats as we anchored in Foggy Bay inner basin at 1800 PDT.  Clocks were changed to Alaska Daylight time.  We covered 104 nautical miles today for a total of 618 since leaving Anacortes.

As the sun finally went down, the wind died completely while at anchor in Foggy Bay and we called it a night early after 12 hours underway.

May 8, 2018

The winds remained calm overnight and we slept well at anchor. Nevertheless, at 0502 the anchor released from the sticky and stinky black mud in Foggy Bay and we reversed course out the narrow channel into Revillagigedo Channel and headed for Ketchikan.  The weather gods were not done, we experienced wind, waves and opposing swells as we chased the remains of fog banks covering the channel.  Past Twin Islands, the wind and seas calmed totally and we headed without further incident up Tongass Narrows.  

After clearing US Customs, we refueled at Petromarine.  Fuel prices were only slightly higher than in Anacortes.  By 1015 we were tied up at Bar Harbor, our home for the next few days.  We have travelled 655 nautical miles since Anacortes

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 4 – Pender Harbour to Port McNeill

May 2, 2018Sometime during the night, the wind shifted to NW, but remained light.  At 0740 we began the stinky and dirty process of pulling the anchor from the muddy bottom in Gerrans Bay.  The day was sunny, but still cool.Heading out into M…

Alaska 2018 Blog Post 3 Vancouver to Pender Harbour

April 30, 2018

Today was provisioning day in Vancouver, with walking trips to Costco and Granville Island for fresh produce and fresh oysters, along with trips to Urban Fare for items for which we did not need the Costco quantities.  Later in the afternoon, Frank and Cathy Montgomery arrived and we shared the fresh oysters on board Siprit, followed by an excellent dinner at Provence Marinaside restaurant at the head of the dock.

Some of the people ferries from our marina to Granville Island
Our dock mates at Quayside Marina

May 1, 2018

The skies were overcast to partly sunny as we prepared to depart False Creek’s Quayside Marina.  After filling the water tanks, we cast off the lines at 0930 and motored slowly out of False Creek, which has a 5 knot speed limit and a lot of people ferry traffic, as well as kayaks, stand up paddle boards and other miscellaneous watercraft.

Departing False Creek
Clearing the entrance, we set a course for Bowen Island, crossing the traffic lanes at right angles as the wind speed increased to 15-20 knots.  The seas gradually increased to 4-5 feet as the wind held steady at 15 knots.  Rounding Bowen Island, we set a straight line course for Merry Island and Welcome Passage in confused short seas still running 4-5 feet from the northwest.  As we continued north the seas gradually calmed to 1-2 feet, but the wind remained at 10-15 knots approaching Merry Island.

Merry Island Lighthouse
The seas were rippled north of Merry Island and the wind shifted from NW to SE under sunny skies.  Spirit entered Pender Harbour at 1520.  Garden Bay was our initial choice for anchorage, but a number of buoys, floating barges, crab pots and anchored liveaboard boats used all the safe spots, so we went back to Gerrans Bay and anchored in our usual spot.

Engines were shut down at 1552 as we set the hook in a mud bottom in 45 feet of water. Todays run of 48.5 nautical miles was accomplished in 6 hours 22 minutes, including the slow speed requirement in False Creek and the no wake speed from Pender Harbour entrance to our anchorage.