The morning of 7-11 dawned sunny and clear with a light breeze that built through the day to over 20 knots. The other boats that shared our anchorage departed early which left us to enjoy Scow Bay in privacy. What a treat! The strong winds and the choppy waters they produced discouraged anymore exploring by dinghy so we happily lounged in “Blue Rodeo’s “cockpit reading and enjoying the warmth of the sun. When the winds began to subside in the early evening we decided to dinghy around to a neighboring anchorage after having seen a sailboat enter there the night before. We found the Beneteau 50 still at anchor with its owner Andreas and friend Ken having dinner in the cockpit. As we approached they smiled and waved and, as cruisers often do, extended the invitation to come aboard. Seeing that they were still in the midst of dinner we suggested instead that they join us aboard our boat when they were finished and they happily accepted the offer. We hurried back to “Blue Rodeo” where Anne quickly made dinner while Mark straightened up a bit in preparation for our guests. Andreas and Ken were experienced racers and cruisers from the Vancouver B.C. area and had lively personalities and great senses of humor. Their description of the beautiful beaches and native village site across the channel prompted our early dinghy excursion the next day for a hike ashore. We really enjoyed our time ashore there and hiked for several miles along a pebble and rocky shore that bordered the dense rain forest. We explored tide pools and beach combed; finding lots of debris washed up on shore some of it quite interesting. There were lots of fishing floats and buoys of different sizes including one rather large black float almost as big as an average bathtub with Japanese writing on it. As we finished our hike we could see that the winds in the channel were already howling and, on our trip back to our anchorage, our little inflatable boat probably spent as much time in the air as it did in the water as it bounced from one wave top to the next.
Once back aboard we settled into a few boat projects and Anne made chocolate peanut butter cookies and chicken curry for dinner. Andreas stopped by to invite us over after dinner for drinks and we were treated to their pleasant company once again. With the long days at this latitude during the summer its easy to find yourself still talking, laughing and watching the sunset even after 10pm. Even though it was late when we returned to “Blue Rodeo”, we watched another episode of "24” and both agreed that we were getting addicted to the show.
Tuesday 7-13 dawned sunny and calm as we departed the Bunsby Islands for Kyuquot Sound. Careful navigation was required as we motor sailed through rocky and reef strewn waters toward our new destination. By late morning we were already squeezing through the narrow entrance to Blue Lips Cove where we intended to anchor for the night. Our timing couldn’t have been better as the only other boat there was raising anchor and preparing to leave as we slowly motored in. As we write this “Blue Rodeo” swings lazily at anchor in what could easily be mistaken as a small alpine lake. The tree covered rocky shoreline conceals the narrow entrance and from our position we are unable to see the channel.
On the morning of the 14th we sailed from our anchorage to a small cove near Rugged Point Marine Preserve. After going ashore we met an interesting couple who were kayak touring and had camped there for the night. It was interesting hearing of their adventures and sharing ours with them. After saying goodbye, we set out along the trail and boardwalk through the rainforest to the other side of the peninsula where we found incredible white sandy beaches on the ocean side. The sandy beaches were interrupted by forested and rocky cliffs and in several places the trail connecting them featured ropes and ladders to help hikers. We explored the beaches for several hours scouring the high tide line for anything interesting that might have been blown ashore by the winter storms. Many areas were covered with huge logs worn smooth by the waves and assorted plastic fishing floats were common. We even found the skeleton of a baby sea lion.
Later that afternoon we sailed back up the inlet to the seclusion of Dixie Cove where we found just one other boat already at anchor. Supposedly this cove has the warmest water on the west coast of Vancouver Island so after scrubbing our boat’s waterline from the dinghy, Mark took a dip in the water and found it cool but refreshing. Our hand held depth meter/thermometer showed 68 degrees at the surface so it really wasn’t too bad at all. While Anne was starting dinner the folks from the other sailboat came by in their dinghy on their way to retrieve their crab and shrimp traps. They were Kate and Carl from Utah and had accomplished what many people have failed to do. They had built their own boat starting from a professionally built steel hull and we listened with great interest as they told of the construction ordeal. When they continued on, we had another pleasant evening and ate dinner in the cockpit as the sun sank behind the tree covered hills to the west.