Saturday, July 12, 2014

Over the Horizon to Haida Gwaii

On Tuesday, we left the busy port of Prince Rupert and motored (again) out towards a jumping off point.  After a long afternoon and a false attempt at Larson Bay, a recommended stop, we picked our way through a rocky path to Griffin Bay.  Loon song greeted us and it was a good anchorage among beautiful, peaceful and solitary scenery overnight.

Wednesday morning we set off across Hecate Strait.  We hoisted the main and anticipated our first sail in weeks.  Moderate northwesterly winds were forecast,.... but Noooo.  We motor sailed sometimes, when there was enough breeze for that.

Before long, we could see the mountains of Haida Gwaii revealed through the clouds in the west.  It was an easy approach.  Skidegate Inlet divides the two main islands, Graham and Moresby, with low forested mountains on either side.  The anchorage in front of Queen Charlotte City (QCC pop ~700) was excellent.  The following morning we found a berth in the municipal marina at the foot of the ramp among the sport and commercial fishing boats.

The weather was (and continues to be) sunny - Praise Be!  It's breezy of the strait in the afternoon, but excellent biking weather.  Since most of our visit will be in the Gwaii Haanas National Park, we attended a required orientation at the wonderful Haida Gwaii Museum in Skidegate.  It was a great bike ride from QCC to Skidegate on a good road, light traffic, light wind and SUNSHINE!!!  and more is forecast.

As an additional bonus, we met two other cruiser boats, Linger Longer from Shilshole D-dock, and Saracen from Vancouver.  We'd seen Saracen at several other spots, so it was about time we got acquainted.  We hope to see more of both of them later in the park.

Moving on: the plan is to get fuel at Sandspit and make our first stop at Skedans, a former Haida village site.

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