The weather turned cool and rainy around the last time I made a blog post (3 weeks ago). Since the last time I posted we visited Grace Harbour, which was beautiful even in the rain. The day before we arrived there was a bear sighting, but we didn’t spot any. While we were there we met Bill, Paddy and Libby of Seastrand – we would take our dogs for shore leave on the same schedule and we visited each others boats. When there was a break on the weather we headed out of Desolation Sound. We were heading to a port called Westview to re-provision and fill our water tanks, etc but when we got close enough to check on dock space they were full. We headed to the nearest other port, which was Van Anda on Texada Island. We were still a ways off when the engine RPMs started to go crazy. We shut down the engine and sailed even though there were only a few knots of wind. It turned out that the alternator arm snapped. Ralph was able to make a temporary repair to get us to the dock at Van Anda.
Once we got near the harbor we noticed that Seastrand was also headed to the same dock. We had a very nice happy hour that evening about Seastrand. The community around Van Anda was peaceful. Walking along the road, everyone waves at you while you are walking. It’s very sweet. We heard someone say that the island population is 600 people and 3,000 deer – that wouldn’t surprise me!
We stayed at the dock for three nights and then headed south again. Ralph was able to make a sturdier temporary repair to the engine and we felt comfortable heading out, with a good forecast for sailing weather. As things tend to go, the forecast wasn’t quite accurate and we got hardly any sailing in, but we made it to Pender Harbour where we stayed anchored for several days, again waiting out foul weather. While we were there we met some people from San Diego who had built a house there with a dock to keep their boat – it’s a great location for cruising.
Once again a weather window opened and we headed to Plumper Cove on Keats Island, which is in Howe Sound northwest of Vancouver. We stayed at the park dock for 4 days and enjoyed the lovely walks in the campground while the wind raged in Georgia Strait.
We left the dock early and headed to Vancouver, soon wet from a rain shower. We arrived and anchored in False Creek, which is in the heart of the City. It’s a little bit of shock at first with the water taxi’s racing by us many times a day, lots of boats coming and going, party boats making noise, boaters of all types getting their exercise, etc. We were anchored near the home of our friends Anne and Henri and have been able to meet up with them several times and enjoy their company. Soon after we arrived in town we picked up our car and went to take a look at the marina we had made arrangements with to keep the boat during the winter. Unfortunately for us there was a misunderstanding and it turns out they don’t have room for us there. For the last week we’ve been looking for moorage. There are a few options and we hope to have something settled soon. For now we are at a dock in the slip of a friend of Anne and Henri’s, which is comfortable for us. We recently went to visit Bill, Paddy and Libby at their house/farm and had a wonderful dinner. Vancouver is a great city with great people and we are enjoying it.