Sheila and I went for a nice hike along a river in Port Hardy this morning and then came back into Beaver Harbour. As we came in, we passed a sea otter, first one I have seen this far south. Later, Sheila went for a swim, but as the water temperature is only 15 degrees Celsius, I abstained.
I came into Port Hardy today as Sheila is flying in this evening. At the harbour entrance a group of orcas welcomed me, with breaches and tail slapping. There is a lot of fishing around here and the guided boats coming back had halibut and salmon. Maybe we will get some for dinner tonight?
I returned to Port McNeill yesterday and spent a nice evening with friends from another boat. Today I went to Beaver Harbour, surrounded by the First Nations village of Kwakiutl. They have been here for a long time, and in 1792 the Spanish explorers Galiano and Valdes stopped by as well. The Hudson Bay Company established Fort Rupert here in 1851, but it all burned down in 1889. Today, the Kwakiutl First Nation still has a cannon in their welcome pole.
I anchored in Patrician Cove and hiked 12 km through the woods and along the beach into town and back, quite strenuous but also very interesting.
(Note for Peggy: Exact distance was 11.7 km, this time measured from beach)
I came back to Vancouver for a week to be with Sheila, meet friends and have a couple of biotech meetings. The weather is fairly nice, but today was very windy and I had to sprint across a section of the seawall that was sprayed with waves.
I am still on Malcolm Island, but moved to the harbour in Sointula, a small Finnish town with an interesting history. I walked out to Bere Point, a beautiful park on the East coast of the island and watched some humpback whales feeding close to shore. From the harbour it is two kilometres to the town centre (ferry dock), but the cold beer at the pub tastes good.
An early start with boat chores, laundry and cleaning. I then came over to Mitchell Bay on Malcolm Island. I walked to the end of the road from the public dock, about two hours return. The people in all five cars who passed me waived, and even the deer came out to have a look. Very friendly! The morning was cool with high fog, which burned off and the afternoon was sunny and warm.
I watched a bear on the beach again this morning and then came to the Plumber Islands. I am anchored in a very small enclosed bay, surrounded by seals sleeping on rocks, bald eagles making a racket, humpback whales feeding to the South, orcas going by to the North, and the occasional cruise ship on both sides. The sun is shining, but there is still quite a bit of wind.
A short trip across Indian Channel today to the anchorage behind Mound Island. This is very protected and the weather was cloudy, windy and a bit chilly. Tomorrow the sun is supposed to come back. I spent the day kayaking, watching bears on the beach and bald eagles fishing.
Short motor through Beware Passage and now I am anchored between Crease Island and the Goat Islands. I kayaked again in the afternoon and walked around one of the Goat Islands. This took about 10 min at low tide, at high tide it would have been quicker. No goats in sight, just a lonely tree. The weather was mostly sunny again, but breezy in the afternoon.
I spent another day in Potts Lagoon, because it is such a beautiful anchorage, and I met some nice people here. This morning I went for a long kayak trip through the lagoon, and then picked up my crab trap. There were two nice keepers in it, which made a great lunch (after a bit of work getting all the flesh out!). The afternoon I spent again on the kayak and saw a bald eagle eating a fish it had caught. The weather turned sunny and warm, just great to hang out here.