We awoke to sunny skies and cast off in the dinghy for the institute docks in order to make the short hike to West Beach. The tide was out, exposing a vast expanse of white sand about a mile long. If you ignore the piles of drift wood, testimony to the big storms here, and squint a little you can convince yourself that the cedars are palm trees and that you are in Hawaii. After an hour or so we walked back to the boat, pulled anchor and made way through Hakai Passage for Codville Lagoon - about 3 hours north.
Codville Lagoon is a provincial marine park located at the east side of the union of Fitz Hugh Sound and Fisher Channel. It has a skinny entrance but opens up into a large anchorage with an island in the middle. We dropped the shrimp pot in a 270' hole and continued on to the anchorage at the east end. It was a warm, sunny afternoon and evening. We heard the loons calling for each other.
We had planned to stay for two nights but had heard a weather forecast on the way up Fitz Hugh calling for big wind starting Friday PM. A high pressure ridge is setting up west of here over Haida
|Red Sky at Night...|
If you look at a chart of this area you would initially think that there are many ways north from here. But, a closer look tells you that all traffic on the Inside Passage must go through this choke point - all else is a dead end. That's why the Canadian Navy built a float plane base here during WWII from which to patrol the central BC coast. The airplane hanger is now the marina workshop. Many of the islands near here were named by those pilots for aircraft used during the Battle of Britain - Spitfire, Hurricane, Spider, etc. There are still ruins of gun placements, etc. out there. Gunboat Passage is nearby. We plan to explore the warren of low lying islands south and west of here but it requires settled weather due to the exposure to the Pacific. Plus, it's not very well charted and it's a real rock pile. We were out there in 2005 - it's beautiful so we want to go again. Often, a big wind is followed by an extended period of calm, sunny weather. That's what we're hoping for.
July 16 - 20: Shearwater to Ocean Falls
July 16 - After celebrating Rolynn's ??th birthday we left Shearwater in the early PM and moved in beautiful sunny weather less than two hours north to Troup Narrows. There is an unnamed inlet there called "Discovery Anchorage" by some. Its very roomy and we anchored along with 7 other boats.
|Roscoe Inlet Anchorage|
The next morning we moved through Troup Narrows and Return Passage to the head of Roscoe Inlet for two nights. After five nights in Shearwater we needed to make water along the way. There is so much fresh water from the many streams in the fjords (fresh water floats on salt water) that we were able to make in excess on 30 gal/hr. Roscoe is a very scenic fjord and it takes
|Roscoe Inlet Vista|
On Thursday we moved back down to Troup Narrows for some crabbing - 10 nice keepers over night.
July 19 - Ocean Falls
Friday, we drove three hours to Ocean Falls which lies at the end of Cousins Inlet, off Dean and Fisher Channels. Fisher is deep water - almost 2000 feet in places.
A pulp mill was built here beginning in 1906 along with a sawmill to provide wood for the mill's steam plant. Later came a dam to provide water and power. Most of the first workers were Japanese,
|Hudson's Bay Co - For All Your Shopping Needs|
|Apartments for Rent - No Damage Deposit Required|
The Norwegians built a salmon rearing facility here a few years ago because of the abundant fresh water from Link Lake behind the dam. Most of the salmon "farms" you see along the BC coast are Norwegian companies.
|The Courts are Available|
|Dress Code Strictly Enforced|
The province ended up with the dam and power house but wanted to get out of the electricity business so they auctioned them off a number of years ago. The only bidder was the long time facilities manager. He bought it all for $1.00 under the proviso that he string lines and provide power to Bella Bella, about 20 miles as the crow flies. The three turbines are still spinning but are controlled remotely from Victoria. The owner lives in Aruba - maybe.
It was raining last night, our first since July 2. Today we cleaned crab and will go explore the town this PM to see what else has fallen down. We plan to go back to Shearwater Sunday and Monday then SW into Queens Sound and explore the islands for a couple of weeks, weather permitting.