Our destination was Effingham Bay, the only all-weather anchorage in the Outer Islands of the Broken Group. All the other coves were exposed to seas or winds from some direction, so we planned to use Effingham as a base for the mothership while we explored in the dinghy.
There were a couple of places that we were tempted to try to go into or through in the dinghy, but the thought of damaging the boat on the sharp rocks so far from help changed our minds. We satisfied ourselves with less involvement in the scenery.
We called this one "Grumpy Old Man Rock". It reminded me of an elderly Popeye.
"Beach" is a kind word for the jumble of rocks that we found, but even in this forbidding place we found beauty. Flowers will somehow grow even in the most unlikely of tiny spaces.
The weather was holding, mainly sunny and calm, so we thought we would try one of the "conditional" anchorages in the outer islands. Wouwer Island had come highly recommended by several cruisers we had met in Ucluelet, so we reluctantly weighed anchor and motored out of Effingham.
|Anne on cleanup detail.|
This wasn't a total calamity, since I had a spare pump on board, but there was no way I was looking forward to the impending pump dismounting and reinstallation. We anchored off Wouwer Island and got to work. I had planned well, I had a piece of plastic sheeting big enough to line the hull area under the pump, there was a shutoff valve on the tank before the pump, and I had a strong stomach. I needed it. Hanging head-down under the V-berth is bad enough, but throw in a quantity of well-aged sewage and it's something out of Dante. Anne was a trooper and helped in the disposal of said sewage overboard.
|Never leave home without heavy rubber gloves|
|Barkley Sound from Dodger Passage|
We had decided against Bamfield since it was going to add another hour to our trip and it was long enough already, so we were going to Dodger Passage, closer to the entrance of Barkley Sound. On the way across Imperial Eagle Channel the warning light came on and we shut the motor down. The new alternator belt had exploded. It appeared the belt dressing I had used on it had softened the rubber to the point that it shredded. The bottom of the engine compartment was covered in black rubber dust and bits of belt were all over. I was getting low on spares, I only had three belts left. It was the usual fun of working on a hot motor while pitching up and down in four-foot swells, but I was getting good at this by now and it only took ten minutes. We finally put the hook down in Dodger Channel and after a well-deserved happy hour, we had a late dinner went to bed with the alarm set for five AM. With close to 80 miles to go the next day, we needed all the time we could get.