Bear with us

The sunshine returned in the morning and Sun-day was indeed a lovely sun-day—what a welcome change after all the sogginess! By 10 am we were motoring out of Ocean Falls and were treated to a great view of the falls below the dam on our way into Cousins Inlet.

The falls below the dam in Ocean Falls
Another view of the falls as we motor away

We motored for the next 4.5 hours down Cousins Inlet and around into Dean Channel, enjoying ever-more-breathtaking views of soaring snowy peaks, towering granite cliff faces, velvety green hills and shores, and silvery waterfalls of all sizes (aren’t you relieved that I didn’t take pictures of them all?).

View from Braesail’s bow of mountains in Dean Channel

I volunteered to pump out the holding tank when we were in a wide section of the channel, and managed to open the correct valve this time and get the job done RIGHT!

The trip from Ocean Falls (middle left) down Cousins Inlet and up Dean Channel to Eucott Bay (upper right)

We arrived at our destination, relatively shallow Eucott Bay, in the early afternoon and found a good anchoring spot toward the center of the bay, which occupies the bottom of a huge “bowl” formed by the surrounding 3,000-to-4,000-ft. granite mountains and cliffs, is circled by shores of brown-gold sand, seaweed, and grass that give way to woods, and is decorated by a feathery trail of water cascading a thousand feet from a snowfield directly into the sea.

A waterfall descends from the top of one of the mountains beside Eucott Bay. Notice the “gallery” of black granite slabs near the top. Water glistens as it trickles down these slabs after rain and joins the stream racing down to the sea.

Walt and I found ourselves rather tired—it seems that the alertness, focus, and sustained attention that motor cruising requires can drain one of a good deal of energy over the course of several hours, even when “nothing is happening.” The person at the helm looks in all directions for floating debris, watches the shorelines and the state of the sea, listens for unusual sounds, reads the engine oil pressure, engine water temperature, and fuel gauges, and monitors wind speed and direction, water depth, amount and direction of current (the difference between boat speed-over-water and speed-over-ground), the track of the boat on the chart, the presence, size, type, speed and courses of other boats that can be seen physically and/or detected by their broadcast signals, etc., all while appreciating the stunningly beautiful scenery! So we thoroughly enjoyed being WARM and lazy on a SUNNY afternoon with the hush-sh-shing of falling water in these Yosemite-like surroundings sending us off into peaceful and refreshing slumbers!

Evening in Eucott Bay

We were back in the cockpit after supper and I was preparing to take some pictures when I spotted a bear on the shore, possibly digging for clams in the mud. We looked at him through our binoculars and decided that we were seeing a grizzly with brown fur toward his shoulders and head and shiny golden hindquarters.

We both took pictures, and in Walt’s, the bear can be seen much more clearly. We watched for a long time, and the bear moved very little but simply kept working away with nose and paws, gathering dinner. How wonderful to have seen both a black bear and a grizzly bear (from a distance)! Now, having shared Evening Prayer, it’s time to wish the bear a good night and find our way to bed in our “den” in Braesail’s aft cabin.

Can you spot the bear on the shore in the center of the picture? I’m glad we had our binoculars in the cockpit!

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