Day Seven: Long day, Short trip

Leslie beat me up. First time this week. I was tired; all that lazing around yesterday wore me out. And I had to get up and secure the banging cabin door after the wind came up last night. Poor Bruce.

At any rate, I got up for coffee with the water pre-hotted and decided to be virtuous and sliced up an apple: blech.

We listened to the weather reports, learned that LA hadn’t won the cup and discovered Katherine Wynne was gay, courtesy of George Takei. I guess we should look at some real news eventually.

Today we have 4nm to go across the Malaspina Strait to Westview (Powell River). Or we could stay put and go tomorrow am. No decisions until the teeth are brushed…

So one of the things we are learning about is the boating community. We got a little of it last year, but there are so many destinations in the Gulf Islands that you didn’t keep running into┬áthe same boats over again. Here on the Sunshine Coast most people are going one way or another. We met 3 boats in Secret Cove. One was going back to Vancouver, one we met the next day as we were leaving Pender and they were arriving and one, the Sea Slipper (an old Uniflite), we encounter again in Sturt Bay. Another is a big American Tug we saw in Pender Harbour. Even curmudgeons like us will eventually start talking to these complete strangers like we actually knew them. Mostly about boats and destination. Kinda like chatting to a farmer: the weather, what’s next and what you know more about than the other guy.

Anyway, today we are out in the strait just noodling around.

5h14m 20.5nm

Five hours and fourteen minutes later we headed into Westview. We had tacked, gybed, hove to, close reached, beam reached and reefed. All in all, a successful sailing day in which we got absolutely nowhere not very fast. Winds peaked out about 13 knots and were generally fluctuating between 7 and 10 knots. On either end of our tacks we usually ran into a bit of a wind shadow and the winds would drop to 5 knots and we’d turn around and try again.

It was a great day on the water and I’m glad we had the chance to just sail without having to worry about getting somewhere.

Pulling into South Harbour at Westview to fuel up I had to try and back into the small fuel dock as Ocean Grace (another Broughtons boat–the Catalina 30) was already tied up to the front. While it was eventually successful, it wasn’t pretty. Still, no small cats were harmed during the making of the dockage so I guess I have to be satisfied with that.

After fueling up we called Larry over at Cooper’s slips in North Harbour. I think Larry is still having a bad day. A distinctly unhelpful experience concluded with me just radioing the Harbour master and requesting a slip. He said take a spot anywhere on 4, 5, 6 or 7 to 11. Still not that helpful. But I shall persevere.

Anyway it seem this is a busy spot and rafting (docking to another boat) is common. But never having engaged in that particular maneuver, I wasn’t hot to try now. So we backed up and found a nice end slip on 8, way on the other side of the fuel dock. A long walk from the office and an even longer one from Coopers docks but that’s life in the sailboat lane.

Then the long walk back to the wharfinger’s office and we pay up (only $27/night) and snag the shower key. Good to go! While there I briefly met Dave from R Shack Island. Seems he was smart enough to ask for a slip in North Harbour and they helpfully accommodated him. Turns out I could have been more specific about who our boat was and I too might have been so blessed. Of course Larry never mentioned that to me when I asked for his advice. I’m sure when I actually meet Larry I will find him a perfectly acceptable human being, but right now he seem more of an obstacle to be overcome than a resource to be embraced. Dave’s obviously more canny than I am.

Anyway back at the boat I broke out a beer and L finished the cider she had got a head start on. Pizza was the order of the day so I whipped up some dough and let it rise while I made a sauce. The docks have a ban on bbqs so I was saved that humiliation. C would never have forgiven failure on my part. I fried up two crusts in a pan and popped one in the oven with the requisite sauce, cheese and ham. The other got olive oil, salt, fresh rosemary and garlic and was christened pizza bread. Not bad. But I’ll do better next time… And the wine makes everything better.

After dinner I hit the showers while Chief Pilot La cleaned up. We’ve got enough sauce for pasta so we should be good for at least another meal.

A little quiet time and it should be back to games. Last night Leslie beat me by one point and I need to redeem the honour of Team B.