Out of the washer and into the shower

Tuesday night began peacefully at the Deep Cove dock, but a wind rose sometime after midnight that decided to buffet the boat’s exposed seaward side. This provided me with an experience similar to being bounced around inside an old metal top-loading washing machine while someone pounded on its exterior with log-sized timpani mallets (“wave slap”)! This meant that I got almost NO sleep and finally dragged myself out of bed at about 8:30 am on Wednesday feeling almost ill from lack of sleep and the chaotic motion of the boat. Walt suggested that I crawl into the bottom bunk in the boat’s central crew cabin, a location much quieter and more stable than the aft cabin in which we normally sleep in a very comfortable queen-sized “Memory Foam” bed. This I did, and got up again at about 11 am feeling considerably better (the wind had died and the boat’s bouncing and rocking had ceased as well). Walt had hiked up to a terrific bakery in the village of Deep Cove and had returned with marvelous coconut cake doughnuts and large raisin-cinnamon rolls, but I didn’t feel hungry enough to eat until afternoon.

Braesail’s route from Deep Cove to the end of Indian Arm, and back past Vancouver to Snug Cove on Bowen Island

Since we had some time before the currents around Vancouver allowed for smooth and safe passage out of the area, we decided to motor the rest of the way to the end of the Indian Arm glacial fjord, and then return past Deep Cove, pass under Vancouver’s First Narrows and Second Narrows bridges, and go on to a marina on Bowen Island. Our cruise, under steely skies, was very beautiful, and provided wonderful views of thickly forested slopes, colorful sweeps of rocks (some streaked with the vivid yellow of sulfur), and shiveringly tall peaks wrapped in scarves of new snow. We were able to view three large waterfalls: Silver Falls (tucked behind a large rock outcropping), Granite Falls (the most famous), and a long unnamed fall that trailed gracefully down a granite cliff face.

Granite Falls spills over the rocks and into the sea near the north end of Indian Arm

The current was flowing in our direction of travel on the way back to Vancouver, and we passed under the bridges and into open water with no difficulty, though we could see the turbulent, churning water swirling around us as we motored. The very-variable winds rose and fell frequently as we traveled, making sailing unfeasible, so we simply continued to let our 70-hp diesel engine power the boat. As we were taking advantage of the fine Union Steamship Company Marina’s mooring facilities in Snug Cove, the rain returned and intermittent showers kept us company as daylight diminished. We were happy to be docked safely, snugly, and quietly, and spent a comfortable night!

One thought on “Out of the washer and into the shower

  1. I have only gone ‘sailing’ once in my life. My cousin has a pretty good size sailboat (much smaller than yours) that we got to enjoy for a day on Lake Tahoe, CA, on a beautiful August Saturday. It was so magical, peaceful, and utterly beautiful, and unforgettable. My only experiences on the ocean were a trip to Victoria BC, (really Salish Sea…. not much different than Washington State Ferries) and a Carnival cruise from Miami to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. It was a huge boat – some 3500+ passengers plus crew. I remember just a little bit of squeamishness with some turbulent waters on the open sea…. so can’t imagine what trying to sleep with the winds pounding at Deep Cove must have been like! You two are braver than I!


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