Piscatorial acrobatics in the bay

Silent shafts of shimmering sunshine greeted us on Monday morning, and by about 10:30 am we were motoring out of Douglas Bay

Douglas Bay, with its lovely white-sand beaches and glassy water, on Monday morning

and Forward Harbour and heading for Handfield Bay about four hours away as a seal slipped by to bid us farewell. We made two rapid rapids transits (at Whirlpool and Greene points), and encountered minimal spinning, bubbly water. Along and above the channels through which we traveled were jagged peaks, some dappled with snow, and rounded, wooded hills; on the shaded side of Braesail, the sea was a deep, forest green as it reflected the trees on the shores, and on the sunny side of the boat, the water was a vibrant cerulean satin.

As we were anchoring and stern-tying near an island in Handfield Bay, we could hear repeated sounds of splashing, as if someone were rowing a boat–KA-PLOOSH!–KA-PLOOSH!–and saw that, at the mouths of several streams along the shore, sizeable fish were leaping far out of the water and flopping back in with a smack, sometimes spinning and twisting and sparkling in the afternoon light! This continued all day and evening, and began again this morning (Tuesday, September 20), and was very entertaining to observe! At one point, I saw a seal seeking a snack (I didn’t see him snag one), and later I watched a bald eagle dive, snatch a fish, consume it near some boulders on the shore, hop onto a rock to survey the scene, and then soar out across the bay. We were anchored too far from shore to allow decent photography, so I simply watched the show.

View toward the mouth of Handfield Bay
Walt tied Braesail’s stern to a tree on this island

On today’s cloudless, warm afternoon, we will travel through two more tidal rapids and then anchor somewhere among the Octopus Islands. I have good memories of spending time there five years ago, and am looking forward to another lovely visit.

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