Our departure day is upon us and we have tons to do to get ready. We have to provision our fresh foods and those few items we forgot to get yesterday. A couple of six packs of beer are on the list, along with propane, and getting the rental car gassed and returned to Budget. On top of all that, we have to load everything onto the boat.
We make our first boat run early, before breakfast. It was a low tide; is it not always a low tide when you have to load up? There is only one small dock cart to be found, so I unloaded my large wheeled duffel on the boat and then transformed it, using it as a “cart”. Turns out that worked very well. Throw everything you can into it, zip it up and you’re good to go. I can see this technique will get used again.
Breakfast was back at Cafe Guido. It is simply a great place. The added bonus of WIFI caused us to stay a while and field a bunch of emails. I also download some weather GRIB files for the next 7 days.
Back to the cabin we then went, to load everything in the car and check out. The Overwaitea was next and, after another full cart and an empty wallet, it was back to the boat for another 20 trips up and down the ramp. At least now the tide was up and the travels were less treacherous.
I would go back and forth from the car to the boat, Sherpa-style, and hand off the goods to Karen, who would find a place to stow our provisions and gear. We usually take the time to remove any extra packaging and wash, dry and bag anything fresh, but this time it was simply a matter of finding a temporary home and we’ll deal with it later.
Everything on the checklist being complete, we cast off at 2:50pm. Beautiful clear weather and smooth seas were waiting for us. It was nice to have perfect conditions as we reacquainted ourselves with Alaskan Dream. After being away from her for two years, everything was familiar but different. The owner has added some new electronics and we needed to learn some new “buttonlogy”, but that came easy.
We were last in the Pearse Islands in 2008. Not much has changed, in fact, nothing has changed. A narrow entrance opens up into serene, protected anchorage. The current still marches its way to and fro with the tide. The only problem here is that with the strong current flow comes a lot of debris. Kelp is the usual culprit that finds a home on your chain and stabilizers, and occasionally you have to endure the banging from a log bit that runs down your hull. But today was special - a 30 foot tree decided to hug our anchor chain, balanced perfectly abeam to the current.
With the current pushing hard on the log, there was nothing we could do with a boathook to free it. Karen would go out at regular intervals to push at this perfectly balanced tree to no avail, and I kept telling her that until the current changed, there was nothing we could do. That we’d wake up in the morning and it would be gone (hopefully).
With good holding, you still feel secure with the 2-3 knot current running past. You go to bed at one end of your anchor circle and wake up at the other end.
The fair weather did bring forth a grand sunset and Karen and I both spent an hour taking picture as the sun touched the horizon, fell out of view and the sky illuminated with a flourish of oranges, red and magentas on a background of deep blue.
We feel like the Broughtons were welcoming us back.