Day 16: Down, Down, Down, Down, Down

Windy-windy last night. Smooth as glass this morning. Granola bars, coffee and a fresh shirt start the morning. C & L are a bit in awe of my clothing management system as they ran out if fresh clothes days ago.

We’ve started to talk of home too often. Even Carmen is starting to lose her dirty as the title she supplied for today was downright pedestrian: Bulimic Gypsies and AWOL Cushions

D & M had a long night with the 20 knot winds bouncing us around so the departure time got bumped a half hour or so. We managed to lose a cushion…maybe…but the guy in a zodiac meandering around the bay this morning lost a kayak. I guess knots are important.

We putted around the boat tidying up and finally booked our tickets. We’ve decided that home sounds good so rather than stick around and rent a car to Victoria we will just head home. Unfortunately we’ve left it to late and the only, and I mean the only flight out of Nanaimo is the 9:30 Carmen is booked on. I mean it’s not unfortunate that Carmen is booked on it. Just that it’s at 9:30. That means we likely won’t get to see L’s parents.

The anchor came up smoothly–we always seem to master these things when the trips close to an end– and we headed out of Tribune Bay. The wind came up right away do we tried to sail but it died just as quickly. We motored for a bit and tried again.

We got a good hour sailing in a beam to broad reach and C has definitely got some sail-foo going on. We are learning tons about sail trim this trip. I just wish I could get the traveller to work.

Then it was winds die, motored, sails up, winds die, motored, sails up, winds die etc. Eventually we did some math, vectors and figuring and decided to maintain a course and shoot straight into Departure Bay. So we motored for an hour or so and then…

R Shack Island let out her jib first and turned into a beam reach. We waited and the joined in. Once again R Shack was uncatchable on that point of sail. As we were able to turn closer and closer to the wind we started to hit 6.4-6.6 knots and we were sure we were gaining and knew we would catch them as soon as we turned to a close haul.

And at that very, precise, exact moment, Dave radioed that they were going to turn back up away from the wind and sail around to Protection Island and the mooring buoys. It was plausible. Likely even. But we all knew that he was afraid. He smelled our wind-foo lapping over his starboard side and made a run for it. We were on fire! The 7 knot max was the highlight of the trip.

So we turned into our first and only close haul of the trip. Heeled over and doing 6 knots we screamed into the dead spot at the mouth of Departure Bay and slowly slowed down to a slow 4 knots. Just in time to meet the ferry departing. Safely past the the monstrous wake of the Queen of Cowichan, we glanced back to see the Queen of Oak Bay hard on our ass. Ferry-palooza!

Soon enough we furled the genoa and reeled in the main for the last time. Them we motored over to the fuel dock and tied up for some diesel. Just to end the trip on a good note I dropped the fuel cap into the water and hopelessly watched it sink. F*ck.

I called the NYC office and they gave me directions to our slip. I screwed up the entry as I mistook the right slip, but eventually sidled her up and we tied off. A bit of cleanup and it was Miller time. D & M will dinghy up and meet us at the pub 7:15-ish.

6h57m 38.1nm

C&L walked the recycling up and them headed for the pub. I hung out on the dock to flag down the dinghy. We had a great last meal and reviewed the past weeks and had one last visit. But all too soon we walked them down to their tender and said goodbye.

It has been a pleasure and a privilege and we are so grateful for the time we’ve spent with Dave and Margaret. Thanks again guys.

It’s a bit late to pack so it will be up early tomorrow and then we say goodbye to Baraka Too.