“FLYING THE KITE” INTO EGMONT: Monday, August 1 (my brother’s 60th birthday!)

Monday morning found us leaving Ballet Bay for Egmont, the last stop on the coast before entering the winding waterways that lead inland to Princess Louisa Inlet. The wind rose at our stern and we were able to raise the gigantic spinnaker sail known as “the kite” that allows a boat to run before the wind swiftly and efficiently as the wind sends it billowing forth in beauty and glory. With about 15 knots of wind, we were able to sail at about 8 knots (some 9 mph over ground), and at angles that were excellent for these sorts of wind conditions; Walt and Martin were VERY pleased with the performance of the sail and the boat!
We arrived in the Back Eddy Marina in Egmont in the late morning and hiked up from the dock to a store/café that was surrounded by fluffy white hydrangea blossoms resembling mounds of slightly scented snow. Here we bought a chart of the route to Princess Louisa Inlet, made some inquiries about transportation (Martin needed to catch a bus at 6 pm to take him to a ferry to return him to Vancouver for important Tuesday activities), asked about the Skookumchuck (“Big Water”) Rapids to which one can hike to see the forceful water flows change direction with the tides, and bought some frozen treats (mine was a popsicle shaped like a watermelon wedge, with the pink portion formed from raspberry ice, the rind from watermelon ice, and the “seeds” consisting of tiny chocolate chips).
We decided that we’d take naps after lunch and then Walt would take Joy and me in the dinghy to Bathgate, Egmont’s second marina (from which a road leads to the trail to the rapids), return to the boat, collect Martin and his large travel bag and, after a visit to the Back Eddy pub, would transport him to the Bathgate Marina from which he could hike to the bus stop. Meanwhile, Joy and I would see if we could walk the trail to the rapids. This we did, but the road and trail toward the rapids was too long and hilly for Joy’s knees and back to tolerate well, so we walked for 45 minutes through the lush, fairytale forest and across a chuckling stream in the direction of the rapids, but then returned to the dinghy dock at which Walt and Martin were just arriving. Off went Martin to catch his bus, and Joy and I rode back with Walt in the dinghy to Braesail through some bumpy tide-rips and frolicsome currents that left us a little splash-damp! Back on the boat, Walt again produced superb hamburgers for supper, and we spent a quiet night at Egmont’s dock. After playing “Hearts” and preparing for our journey further into the watery zigzags of Jervis Inlet, the fjord that leads to Princess Louisa Inlet, we enjoyed a restful night.

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