Tuesday, September 16, 2008

foggy fall and summer sun

Hi Kids and Chickens!

Back in BC. It's been absolutely BEAUTIFUL! We've hit the foggy fall weather and have had some interesting mornings. We're up early (now that the sunlight hours are back to an even keel, we're getting on a more regular sleeping schedule) and watch as the fog rolls in, settles and lifts again to reveal the crisp blue sky. Quiet mornings spent listening to birds, breaths of whales just outside our cove, and enjoying the solitude of cruising this time of year. The fog settles in again and we wait. Waiting for our clear cool afternoon of cruising. As you can see from pics we're getting a bit more sailing in on the trip south. But the afternoons when the wind isn't blowing, it's downright warm! And guess what I got !?! Tan lines! Although I'm working on not having the lines ;)

You can see just how beautiful the afternoon was in Khutze and I can tell the tail of leaving the next morning.....First I have to introduce you to Gary and Karen. A couple we met in Bishop Bay Hot Springs and cruised with for a few days. They are delivering a 49' Beneteau. We had dinner with them and then Karen celebrated her birthday in Khutze and we had them over for a lovely dinner celebration. A beautiful morning with a little light fog in our inlet. The sun just peeking over the surrounding cliffs, about a half hour after sunrise. We wove our way out of Khutze, just behind Gary and Karen, only to run into a fog bank filling Graham Reach. No surprise that the Beneteau is equipped with RADAR, we are not. Gary did inform us that our echo was very strong, which is very nice to know. They invited us to keep following them and they'd keep an eye on us. As we were trying to decide, not being very comfortable with the idea of flying blind, the fog swallowed us up. We had no choice and worked hard to keep an eye on Anna. We kept in touch via radio when we didn't have visual. Almost three hours later we had a break in the fog. It's absolutely beautiful under a blue sky, green green hills changing into blue mountains as they disappear in the distance. Strong early afternoon winds kept the fog off the water and we parted ways with our guardians where the Heikish Narrows meets Finlayson Channel (us) and Sheep Passage (them). We made our way to lovely Bottleneck Inlet where I finished building and installing our lifelines (finally). We had a lovely afternoon with the warm sunshine to laze naked in the cockpit. A very pleasant anchorage with high green bluffs with just enough of a view into Finlayson Channel to check conditions in the morning. That evening we watched the moonrise as the fog set in and warmed by the fire as the stars came out. Beautiful day.

The next morning brought fog again and Ron and I waited till around 1030 to get moving thru a light fog and light breeze. Roderick Island has nice steep-to shores so we can follow it closely down to Milbank Sound. Trying to decide what to do about lunch, Ron had to bring up Dick's cheeseburgers! Now we're both salivating and I have nothing to compare on board. By noon30 we've set the hook in Mary Cove. The fog is not burning off and we're coming to some island groups and the end of Finlayson. I decided to make pizza, letting the dough rise in the warm engine compartment. We enjoyed a lovely lunch under a blue sky as the fog pulsed and swirled around us. At 1400 we were back underway, the fog finally dissipating under the hot sun and light breeze. No sooner had we pulled out that another fog bank rolled in to cover Dodd Islets. We opted to cut through Jackson Passage/Narrows to Mathieson Channel. As soon as we left the cool breeze behind it was wonderfully warm! We had a beautiful afternoon and evening as we cruised familiar waters again and pushed on to Oliver Cove in Reid Passage.

Another late start the next morning, but a beautiful mid morning run to Bella Bella/Shearwater. I'll take this weather! We're finally feeling like we're getting a summer. Better late than never. We wove our way through Reid Passage which was filled with islets dotted with windblown bonsai-like trees. Beautiful green against the blue sky and water. The lovely ocean swells are mesmerizing as they build whitecaps whenever they find the rocks hidden just below the surface. We slowly made our way to Seaforth Channel. Not a breath of wind for our sails but without the breeze the full warmth of the sun feels wonderful on my bear skin.
Well the fog has lifted and we're off again. We're heading to Queens Sound for a little exploration before rounding Cape Caution. We hope to be back on the east side of Vancouver in a week if this weather holds. Hello to my family! I'll try and call from Port McNeill.

Love to everyone,
Alison, Ron and Juichi

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