Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Out and about

We left Cow Bay on Thursday headed for Montague Harbour which is on Galiano Island.  Galiano’s main claim to fame is as a refuge for granola-eating tree-hugging fudge-packers.  More on that later.

When we arrived at the marine park in Montague Harbour there was hardly a soul there but it started filling up Thursday night.  I estimated about 40 mooring balls in the harbour and by Friday night about 30 of them were occupied.  So not full-full but close.  I don’t trust the mooring balls so we dropped our Sarca and after a couple of tries got a good set.  That seems to be emerging as a pattern.  The first drop doesn’t necessarily produce a set but we’ve never had to drop it more than twice and we absolutely know we’re set when we get done.  I think I actually pulled it out in Montague by pulling too hard on too short a scope the first time.  We were in fairly deep water (around 50 feet) and I think I only had maybe 150 feet of chain out.  When you add the freeboard to the water depth we might have been under 3:1 scope and I powered up pretty hard against that so not too surprisingly we moved. 

The purpose of the trip to Montague was to meet up with a group from SNSYC who were going on to Chemainus for a night of dinner theatre.  We had to bug out of the Saturday flotilla to Chemainus in order to get Marilyn to diving class in Maple Bay.  That meant we had to be up before daylight but it was so pretty at that time that it was almost worth the early start just for the scenery. 

I dumped Marilyn off at the dock in Cow Bay and after she headed off to diving class I made my way alone up to Maple Bay.  I had trouble finding a decent place to anchor when I got there.  Mooring at the “public” dock was out of the question as it usually is. 

The open water dive consisted of walking in off the beach so I hung out on the anchor and watched the class.  Not that there’s much to watch once they go under water.

Marilyn did really well and actually enjoyed the experience, contrary to all expectations on her part.  At one point her group went directly under Gray Hawk and I assumed they would at least check the anchor set and ideally the bow thruster zinc at the same time.  No such luck.

When the dive class finished we made a high speed run up to Chemainus to rejoin the SNSYC group.  They were already having cocktails on the dock when we blew in at a blistering 8 knots.  We managed to get tied up in spite of help from the harbourmaster and immediately poured some bagged wine so we could join the party.  Later we walked to the dinner theatre which was neither a particularly good dinner nor a memorable theatrical performance.  I would have to have strong reasons to go back for either activity but in this case the real purpose was to network with the yacht club members and that was worth the price of admission. 

Yesterday we spent a leisurely morning saying goodbyes as the group broke up in Chemainus.  There were three of those old fashioned kind of boats with the sticks in the air who wanted to leave early in case the wind happened to work for them on the way home.  Their main benefit by leaving early was likely that they could catch a favourable current down Sansum Narrows.  By noon pretty well everyone had left so we had dinner and then chugged our way down into Maple Bay.  It was so crowded there that we didn’t even try to anchor and instead came across to Burgoyne Bay which is where we are now. 

Eclectic doesn’t begin to describe the variety of floating accommodations in this bay.  There’s literally everything here.  It is however very peaceful and we are having a delightful quiet day at anchor here.  Tomorrow we’ll probably start a circumnavigation of Salt Spring Island.  There’s several harbours that indent the island and its time we knew what is in each of them.



Now back to the tree hugging fools on Galiano.  The highlight of the evening in Montague Harbour was a bus ride to a pub for supper.  It was actually a pretty good supper and kind of a cute setup – the pub sends a worn out schoolbus down to the dock, everybody piles on and then this long haired freak driver hauls us up to the pub for the evening.  On the way back to the dock he proudly announced that the citizens of Galiano Island had put Elizabeth Dipshit May over the top on election night.  He was evidently stupid enough to believe that was something to be proud of.

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