"Intrepid" is a Kadey Krogen trawler style motor vessel built in 1987 at the Chung Hwa Boat Yards in Taiwan - hull 138 of 206. She is 42 feet in length with a beam of 14.5 feet and weighs 40,000 pounds fully loaded. Carrying 750 gallons of fuel and 240 gallons of water, she is capable of extended cruising. A previous owner cruised her from Annapolis to the Caribbean and Venezuela then through the Panama Canal, the Sea of Cortez and up the Pacific Coast to Alaska over a period of three years (She was then named "Carpe Diem"). We know of no Krogen that has traveled farther on her own bottom than "Intrepid". We purchased her in 1999 and live aboard her four months of the year as we cruise the intricate waters of the British Columbia and Southeast Alaska coasts. She is berthed in Anacortes, WA.

You can follow Intrepid's path at

Check out the story about our grounding in Passagemaker's online magazine at

Take a look at Rolynn's author website at

If you like technical stuff here is the article I wrote about building a watermaker that appeaared in Passagemaker's online magazine:

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Sitka to Petersburg

While in Sitka we celebrated Rolynn's birthday #XX so we had dinner at Ludwig's Bistro, the nicest place in town, but not the cheapest. I had seafood paelia which was GREAT. Rolynn enjoyed her prawns and lamb chops as well. Ludwig's only sits about 20 people. At the table next to us were eight nice folks from Alabama who were beginning a week's cruise on a charter boat. We departed on Thursday, June 21, after four nice nights, bound for Schulze Bay at the western end of Peril Passage. It was a short, 3.5 hour trip in good weather. The currents at Sergius Narrows were such that we would have needed to leave very early to make the narrows and go farther the same day so we decided to position ourselves close to Sergius for the following day. It makes a 7 hour run from Schulze to Ell Cove a reasonable day.

It was clear and calm when we left Schulze but by the time we got to the eastern portion of Peril, where it widens out and faces into Chatham Straits, it started to get snotty. So, what to do? We could continue on for 5 hours to Ell Cove but if it was unpleasant in Peril then Chatham, which runs north-south and opens into the Gulf of Alaska, would probably be worse. We're retired - the whole point is to have fun without a schedule. So, we turned into Appleton Cove and anchored in the same spot we had the week before. Appleton is nicely protected but the wind still blew pretty good and there were whitecaps in the anchorage well into the late evening. We were glad we didn't go any farther.

The Waterfall Coast:
The east coast of Baranof Island is sometimes called the Waterfall Coast and there are some nice ones. A few are right on the coast and a bunch more are inside the many coves and bays. Saturday we left Appleton around 07:30 for a 5 hour run to Ell Cove which is located on the northeast coast of Baranof Island. It was sunny and flat calm all the way to Ell Cove. If you didn't know Ell was there you would never find it. The entrance is invisible until you are in it. There is good water (deep) all the way in but there is a 90o right turn into the inner cove, hence its name, Ell Cove. The cove is nearly circular with 40 feet or so or water all the way to the shore - room for 3 or 4 boats without shore tying. Very pretty spot, well shielded from all winds. Later, we toured the cove in the dinghy and went around the corner from the entrance to see majestic Kasnyku Falls which is about 500 feet high.

How to See a Waterfall from Your Dinghy
1) Anchor big boat in picturesque cove nearby waterfall,
2) Climb ladder to upper deck where dinghy is secured,
3) Remove dinghy cover,
4) Discover a foot of water in dinghy,
5) Start dinghy bilge pump,
6) Discover dinghy battery is dead (from pumping water out),
7) Fold dinghy cover,
8) Climb down ladder,
9) Go to pilot house to get bungee cord to wrap dinghy cover,
10) Climb up ladder,
11) Wrap and stow dinghy cover,
12) Remove crab pots from dinghy,
13) Remove shrimp pot from dinghy,
14) Remove crab and shrimp pot line reels from dinghy,
15) Remove ditch bag, with flare kit and repair kit, from dinghy,
16) Remove hoist bridle form dinghy,
17) Open flare kit, pour out water,
18) Open repair kit, pour out water,
19) Climb down ladder with sodden flares and repair kit,
20) Climb up ladder,
21) Remove flybridge cover,
22) Open port storage compartment for access to battery charger,
23) Climb down ladder to pilothouse,
24) Open porthole in pilothouse,
25) Climb up ladder,
26) Pass extension cord for charger through porthole,
27) Climb down ladder,
28) Plug in extension cord,
29) Climb up ladder,
30) Remove battery box cover,
31) Discover water in battery box,
32) Climb down ladder,
33) Get drill from pilothouse,
34) Climb up ladder,
35) Climb down ladder,
36) Get bit for drill,
37) Climb up ladder,
38) Drill hole in battery box to drain water,
39) Climb down ladder,
40) Stow drill and bit,
41) Climb up ladder,
42) Attach battery charger to battery,
43) Start charger,
44) Remember you unplugged cord to get drill,
45) Climb down ladder,
46) Plug in cord,
47) Climb up ladder,
48) Repeat step 43,
49) Observe fuel hose is disconnected from fuel tank and laying in water,
50) Wonder if there is water in fuel hose,
51) Wonder if there is water in fuel tank,
52) Disconnect fuel hose from outboard,
53) Climb down ladder,
54) Blow fuel and water(?) from fuel line,
55) Clean fuel and water(?) off deck,
56) Climb up ladder,
57) Reattach fuel hose to outboard and fuel tank,
58) Climb down ladder,
59) Wait for battery to charge,
60) Replace sodden flares, dry and replace other contents,
61) Dry and lube repair kit contents,
62) Dry ditch bag,
63) Stow new flares and repair kit in dry ditch bag,
64) Climb up ladder,
65) Pump water out of dinghy,
66) Mop remaining water from dinghy,
67) Disconnect charger,
68) Climb down ladder,
69) Unplug extension cord,
70) Climb up ladder,
71) Stow Charger,
72) Cover flybridge,
73) Stow ditch bag in dinghy,
74) Lower boom,
75) Unsecure boom stays,
76) Bang knee on boom support,
77) Raise boom,
78) Remove flybridge cover,
79) Retrieve hoist control,
80) Lower hoist cable,
81) Reattach hoist bridle to dinghy,
82) Bang head on hoist cable weight,
83) Hook hoist cable to bridle,
84) Raise dinghy with hoist,
85) Lower dinghy with hoist,
86) Remove cable that holds dinghy to deck,
87) Stow hold down cable,
88) Raise dinghy with hoist,
89) Lower dinghy with hoist,
90) Climb down ladder,
91) Remove "down spout" from scupper so dinghy can clear side,
92) Climb up ladder,
93) Raise dinghy with hoist,
94) Lower dinghy over port side with hoist,
95) Climb down ladder,
96) Unattach hoist cable from dinghy bridle,
97) Pull dinghy to transom,
98) Pull dinghy back to port side,
99) Tie dinghy to port side,
100) Open aft curtains,
101) Roll up aft curtains,
102) Open transom door,
103) Untie dinghy,
104) Pull dinghy to transom,
105) Tie dinghy to swim step,
106) Climb up ladder,
107) Raise hoist cable,
108) Lower boom,
109) Secure boom stays,
110) Raise boom until stays are taut,
111) Stow hoist control
112) Cover flybridge,
113) Climb down ladder,
114) Climb into dinghy,
115) Climb out of dinghy,
116) Retrieve dinghy key from pilothouse,
117) Climb into dinghy,
118) Hope there is no water in fuel tank,
119) Crank outboard,
120) Repeat step 119 as needed or until battery is dead,
121) Pump fuel bulb to pressurize fuel line,
122) Repeat step 119,
123) Climb out of dinghy,
124) Retrieve PFD,
125) Climb into dinghy,
126) Climb out of dinghy,
127) Retrieve hand held VHF radio,
128) Climb into dinghy,
129) Climb out of dinghy,
130) Charge battery in VHF,
131) Climb into dinghy,
132) Test motor at high idle,
133) Untie dinghy painter,
134) Tie dinghy painter,
135) Climb out of dinghy,
136) Retrieve VHF,
137) Climb into dinghy,
138) Untie dinghy painter,
139) Slowly motor away from boat,
140) Discover steering is frozen,
141) Shift to neutral,
142) Look for anything blocking steering, observe nothing,
143) Paddle back to boat,
144) Tie painter to swim step,
145) Shut down outboard,
146) Climb out of dinghy,
147) Take off PFD,
148) Drop VHF on deck, wonder if now broken,
149) Test VHF,
150) Retrieve wrench from tool box,
151) Climb into dinghy,
152) Climb out of dinghy,
153) Get correct size wrench,
154) Climb into dinghy,
155) Remove fuel hose from outboard to gain access to steering controls,
156) Begin to disassemble steering controls (If wrench falls in water see step 153 or skip to step 158)
157) Climb out of dinghy,
158) Get another wrench,
159) Climb into dinghy,
160) Complete disassembly of steering controls,
161) Climb out of dinghy,
162) Retrieve lubricant,
163) Climb into dinghy,
164) Lube steering controls,
165) Reassemble steering controls,
166) Test steering controls,
167) Gather wrenches,
168) Climb out of dinghy,
169) Stow wrenches,
170) Climb into dinghy,
171) Discover lube,
172) Climb out of dinghy,
173) Stow lube,
174) Climb into dinghy,
175) Start outboard,
176) Climb out of dinghy,
177) Don PFD,
178) Climb into dinghy,
179) Climb out of dinghy,
180) Retrieve VHF,
181) Climb into dinghy,
182) Untie painter,
183) Motor slowly away from boat,
184) Test steering,
185) Motor in circle around boat - two directions,
186) Motor at higher speed,
187) Restart outboard,
188) Repeat steps 187 and 186,
189) Reattach fuel hose to outboard,
190) Repeat step 121,
191) Repeat step 187,
192) Motor to waterfall and back,
193) Tie dinghy to swim step,
194) Shut down outboard,
195) Climb out of dinghy,
196) Remove PFD,
197) Climb into dinghy,
198) Retrieve VHF,
199) Climb out of dinghy,
200) Stow VHF,
201) Climb into dinghy,
202) Retrieve ignition key,
203) Climb out of dinghy,
204) Stow key,
205) Mix Gin and Tonics,
206) Enjoy Gin and Tonics.

Sunday morning we noticed a little breeze in the cove but we can not get the weather broadcast inside. We were pulling the dinghy behind as we motored around the elbow, with the intention of going to Red Bluff Bay, and saw good sized whitecaps in the straits. By the time we turned the corner and headed south into Chatham we were bouncing around pretty good - and the dinghy was unhappy as well. We could now listen to the weather. Guess what? They predicted south wind 10 knots, seas 2 feet or less. OK, what are the choices? 1) Go back to Ell Cove, 2) Go five hours to Red Bluff Bay, dinghy in tow, and hope it gets better, 3) Go one hour to Takatz Bay, anchor and put the dinghy on top then continue 4 hours to Red Bluff, 4) Go 1.5 hours to Warm Springs Bay or, 5) Some combination of the above. We opted for going into Takatz and anchoring for the day. (See "retired - no schedule" above). There was no advantage to going on to Warm Springs since it is only an hour closer to Red Bluff. (We had not intended to use the hot baths, anyway.) But, this does put us a day behind or non-schedule so we may have to rethink Red Bluff and or Cannery Cove, our next intended destination. Later in the afternoon we dinghied out to the mouth of the bay to check the conditions in Chatham. They had not improved. We are here for the night.

July is nearly spent and we are approaching 'Fogust". The good thing about fog is there is usually no wind, to speak of. It lies thick along the shores of the islands in the morning but dissipates by late morning, usually. (Later in the month it is thicker and lasts longer.) In the afternoon the wind usually comes up. So, we move in the morning. Monday was heavily overcast with drizzle. Red Bluff Bay is reportedly very pretty with many waterfalls and high mountains. Another "cruising in Yosemite" kind of place. But, if it is overcast and raining then you can't see anything. So, we decided to cross Chatham Straits, round the southern tip of Admiralty Island and head to Cannery Cove in Pybus Bay on the SE shore for a couple of days. It is said there is good crabbing (although the commercial guys have picked off most of them, it seems.) and excellent halibut fishing. So, up at 06:30 to listen to the weather. The problem with the weather forecasts is that they are predicting for large areas, thousands of square miles, but the local conditions within an area vary widely. So, south winds 10 knots, seas 2 feet or less; they said. Not so, we say. Chatham was fine, visibility about 1/4 mile, but when we rounded Point Gardner, where Chatham Straits intersects with Frederick Sound, we found four foot "confused seas", ie, the waves came from all directions. We kind of tacked back and forth, trying to keep the waves off the beam but to little avail. We were never in any danger but it was uncomfortable, at times, and a few glass items, which should never be on a boat in the first place, were broken. Anyway, we made our way to Cannery Cove, put down a crab pot, and anchored in the rain. Admiralty Island has the highest concentration of Brown bears in Alaska. About one bear per square kilometer. There are many more bears than people here. Pybus Bay is very pretty, they say, but you couldn't prove it by us since we can't see through the mist.

OK, after two nights in the rain in Cannery Cove we are ready to leave. While, the weather forecasts (?) looked dicey we left at 06:00 Thursday. We pulled up the crab pot and got two nice ones that I will clean under way, weather permitting. As we exited the cove the chop picked up a little but it was manageable. It is a three hour crossing of most open part of Frederick Sound and it was fine, for the most part. At times the wind driven waves were on the nose while the swells were on the beam but the swells were about 15 seconds a part which is fine for us. When they are close together and the boat's natural roll rhythm gets in sync with the swells that it gets uncomfortable.

Compass Nuts and Bolts
: When we rounded Point Gardner on our way to Pybus Bay I noticed that there was about a 23 degree difference between our heading and our course, unusually large. A word of explanation. (Note, if you start to glaze over you have permission to skip this part.) The navigational program we use reports, among other things, the boat's Course, Bearing and Heading. The course is where the boat is actually going, the bearing is where you want the boat to go and the heading is where the boat is pointed; all in degrees of the compass. I tell the computer where I want to go (bearing), it gets the actual direction (course) from the GPS (Global positioning Satellite) and it gets the direction in which the boat is pointed (heading) from the autopilot's flux gate compass (electronic). In a perfect world (no current or wind) all three will be the same. But, there is wind and current, sometimes a lot. So, the autopilot compensates for the effects of wind and current by constantly monitoring the course and changing the rudder angle, via a motor. In other words, it constantly steers the boat (adjusts the heading) in a way that makes the bearing and course nearly the same. So, the heading is usually different than either the bearing or course. The difference is usually only a few degrees but we have seen it as high as 45 degrees when a strong current is directly on the beam, i.e., at 90 degreees to our bearing. We can tell if the heading makes sense by looking out the window. Do we see a landmark in front of the boat that is where it looks like it should be according to the computer screen?

When we were bouncing our way around Point Gardner the heading was bigger than the conditions (wind/current) called for and in the wrong direction. In fact, the heading error was always about 23 degrees to the east of our actual heading. OK, a little deeper into the weeds, now. (Although the following is fascinating, those who find it too abstruse may wish to enroll in Mr. Anderson's, 9th Grade Earth Science Class - Remedial Section) Not all norths are the same. "True North" is the geographic location of the north pole - the point around which the earth rotates (not revolves). The "Magnetic North" pole is the center of the earth's magnetic field and is a few hundred miles away (and it's getting farther) from the north pole. It is the direction a compass points. The difference, in degrees, is called the "variation". The farther north you are, the greater it is. Hereabouts it is 23.5 degrees east of true north. (Boat navigation is in reference to magnetic north, not true north.) However, there are magnetic anomalies, caused by the kind of rocks around, that make your compass act weird when you are in the area. But, they are pretty well known and shown on the charts. Besides, an anomaly would cause a differing amount and direction of error as the boat's heading changes. (Put a compass in the center of a board. Now put a magnet close by but off the board. Now rotate the board through a complete circle. How does the compass needle move? Remember there are two magnates, one of which is the earth.)

There are also things on the boat, electronic equipment, chunks of metal, etc; that effect the compass readings. This difference is called 'deviation". My compass error acted more like deviation than variation caused by anomaly. (Now put the magnet on the board with the compass. Rotate the board. How does the needle behave, now?) The error was always in the same direction and close to the same amount. Nothing on the boat had been changed - no new equipment, etc. Was something wrong with the flux gate (read expensive) compass? An unhappy prospect, to say the least.

The compass lives in a cupboard where we store snacks - chips, tostadas, nuts, etc. We have consumed some of them so the cupboard is no longer as tightly packed. A large can of peanuts had shifted position due to the rough seas and was now sitting next to the compass. Remove the peanuts and voila, compass error gone.

South from Petersburg:
OK, we are back in Petersburg so you can wake up now. Its July 28 and we are headed south covering, in reverse, much of the same territory we did coming north. Stands to reason. Rolynn is beginning a new book, a historical murder mystery, which is set in Petersburg so she will be doing some research here. We will hit Prince Rupert this time, to clear Canadian customs, and may go on the outside of Pitt Island, weather permitting, rather than retrace Greenville Canal. We will spend a couple of weeks in the Broughton's and should be back in Anacortes around Labor Day.


  1. OMG (as all my teen fb friends say) Such a Steve Anderson Post! No I didn't read his 206 steps (give me a break) - but sure did like # 206! I'm going to read the rest of the post on Saturday when I have time (lots of it) :) Love it. Just hope in St. Petersburg you got to meet the Jacoby brothers. Love to you two! Barbara

  2. David and CynthiaJuly 29, 2011 at 10:10 AM

    Steve, thanks so much for the instructions on how to see a waterfall from your dinghy. Reminds me of so many tasks around home. I tell Cynthia, "This will take me 25 minutes" and two hours later she will find me sorting out the sockets in the socket set that I tipped over--still not having fully assembled all the needed tools or started the actual task. Looking forward to your return through WA--we promiss our own version of snotty weather.

  3. Barri & BonnieJuly 29, 2011 at 1:41 PM

    I loved everyone of the 206 steps having had the pleasure of watching the nautical events on Intrepid. Ah hah! Who knew a can of peanuts would be the culprit. Surely Roly can use that in one of her novels. And don't say "Don't call me Surely." We await your return to sunny San Luis Obispo and then on to REALLY sunny Loreto!