Hilary and I were on the water for a couple of weeks in August, staring with a week around Lasqueti Island, which is starting to really become one of my go-to places in Georgia Strait. It’s far enough from civilization and the beaten track north to be relatively quiet, but just a short jump from Nanaimo or French Creek if marina facilities are needed. The kayaking is really good, and there are plenty of well-protected moorages.
The sail up was more of a motor, really. Which unfortunately happened a lot this trip. Smoke from wildfires created a grey haze most days for the first week. It was warm enough, but it would have been nice to see the sun more.
On shore there was a lot of interesting stuff. Big trees and deep forests in particular. None of it is really old growth, as these islands were all logged back in the day, and some areas were burned off by native peoples as a way of driving out game.
Along the shore of Bull Island Hilary spotted these dead arbutus trees the looked like some kind of mad creature attacking up the cliffs. They don’t show up brilliantly in this image, which was taken from a kayak with the camera in a waterproof bag, but hopefully it is sufficient to give at least an idea of what we were seeing.
We kayaked over to Jedidiah Island Marine Park one day, which is a very nice, isolated little place, although there were quite a few people camping on it around Home Bay.
We also spent a night moored in False Bay and tied up that afternoon at the public dock so we could wander around the island a bit. Like any small rural community there is very little tolerance for diversity, and a uniform dress code of appearance clearly being strictly enforced. Beards are being worn long this year, and bras are being worn elsewhere.
The public float was crowded and casually over-used. We tied up on the part designated for seaplanes (none landed while we were there) and someone else was in the spot the foot-ferry from French Creek moors, although they left well ahead of that boat arriving.
I had a coffee, as I rarely make it on board, and we wandered around a bit, but there was very little open, and what was didn’t have much of anything, including ice. Fortunately the new icebox on Murrelet keeps things nicely cold for a solid seven days.
False Bay itself is quite nice and sheltered, and had a diversity of boats, from modern cats to this much older model, which I’m sure would be very interesting to sail.
The second half of the trip was down through Nanaimo, where we stayed for a couple of days, and then past Dodd Narrows and some poking around the Gulf Islands, particularly Thetis.
The sky over Nanaimo was spectacular.
We spent a day on Gabriola, where we saw Malaspina Galleries and a few other things. I’ve not been over there since I was my teens, so it was fun, and a much more diverse crowd than Lasqueti.
While moored in Telegraph Harbour on Thetis we took the kayak, which I’m thinking of naming “Moppet” to go with the boat, which is named “Murrelet”, through the Cut between Thetis Penalaket, into Clam Bay. It was a nice afternoon of exploring, but like all our side expeditions it could have gone on for a great deal longer!