Pillar Point to Ucluelet. July 2, 2016.
08 July 2016 | Posted at Ucluelet
Photo: Swells in the Pacific Ocean off Bonilla Point.
I braced myself against Osprey’s cockpit combing, trying to get a photo of Bonilla Point lighthouse. But as I clicked the shutter, a wave reared up to starboard, obscuring the lighthouse. Osprey rolled and lurched in the short steep seas. With no wind, we had no sails up to stabilize us and Osprey rolled even more. I wanted this trip to be over.
I’d forgotten how tough it is to get to Barkley Sound. And we’d made this trip even harder by traveling during neap tides instead of spring. Without the long ebbs during the middle of the day, we had been battling adverse currents all the way. To make matters worse, we’d left a day and a half later than we had planned and then spent a day in Port Townsend waiting out 30-40 knot gales. Now for the second day in a row we had no wind but plenty of seas.
With no wind and Steve watching our course, I wedged myself in a corner under the dodger and read an Agatha Christie mystery – one of the best ways I’ve found for passing a rough day at sea.
We passed Pachena Point with its lighthouse and then Cape Beale at the entrance to Barkley Sound came into view: the last lighthouse of the day. Waves crashed on outlying rocks, sending mist into the air. I caught glimpses of the islands beyond in Barkley Sound: green tops and jagged rocks. That was something else I’d forgotten; how wild and beautiful Barkley Sound is. And that, after all, is what makes this trip worth taking.