We cast off for this approximately 150 mile (one way) joy ride from our slip in La Conner at a little before noon on a sunny Saturday. Our first stop was just a mile up Swinomish Channel where we visited the fuel dock to top off our 70 gallon diesel tank. Heading off with the tanks full, the fridge and cabinets crammed with ten to twelve days of very good eating, we headed north towards ominous looking storm clouds and the forecast of gale force winds. Yes, we are very apprehensive. Many thoughts occupied our thinking, the first was, were we making a mistake heading into bad weather. The second was, would we get stuck somewhere and not be able to get back in time for our breakfast date with Linda's mother a week from Tuesday.
|Chatterbox Falls from park float
Our first overnight stop is Patos Island. Patos is as far north, not counting Point Roberts as a boater can go before entering Canada. We anchored with plenty of daylight left to walk out to the lighthouse and hike around. The next morning we got going early before 7 am. With 40 miles to cover at 5-8 mph, False Creek in Vancouver may be an 8 hour run. With no good options to duck and cover along the way, I was a still a little apprehensive to say the least. The wind never really was a factor that day but about halfway to Vancouver we were about 5 miles off shore from the Tsawwassen ferry terminal when a following swell began to overtake us and toss Kraken around like the little 26 Nordic Tug she is. Steering the wallowing boat became full time work and I found myself driving a zigzag course. I was zigging to make our selves more comfy and then zagging back onto a course that would eventually get us to False Creek where we would check into Canada and spend the night. Linda got out the Dramamine, and I took one also, something I almost never do. About every fourth zigzag an extra big quartering swell would turn us sideways causing severe rolling and much crashing sounds coming from all of Krakens many stores and equipment. At this point we are seriously discussing changing course for Bedwell Harbor on South Pender Island. Bedwell was about the same distance, the waves would be more on our nose, and we could continue northward on the inside of the Gulf Islands affording ourselves much better protection, but then we would be on the wrong side of the Strait of Georgia, and north of Nanaimo was where the real gale winds were churning up the strait. This is not how my Princess Louisa Trip was supposed to go.
Click below to read the rest of posting and see a few pictures along the way