A colorful home
13 September 2008 | Quait Bay & Adventure Cove, Clayoquot Sound
Photo: The floathouse called Fireweed, east of Quait Bay.
August 29, 30. Quait Bay, Clayoquot Sound (49 16.4N, 125 52 W)
We've come to Quait Bay to see our friends, Wayne Adams and Katherine King who live in a floathouse in a small cove just east of Quait Bay. I told their story in Voyages to Windward: Sailing Adventures on Vancouver's West Coast (Harbour Publishing, 2005) and also in a Pacific Yachting PNW article. It's too late to go around when we arrive, and besides it's raining. But when we wake up the next morning we have a failure of will; the idea of getting into the dinghy in the pouring rain just exhausts us. We spend the day at anchor, waiting for better weather. Better weather arrives that afternoon, but with it comes a strong west wind. Now it's too rough to take the dinghy out of the bay so instead we spend the afternoon drying and cleaning out the boat and patching a hole in the dinghy.
Our decision to wait pays off with a beautiful day the next morning. We motor the dinghy around the corner and are rewarded with a view of the magenta and turquoise floating complex reflected in calm water. Three winters ago Fireweed was damaged in a winter storm. Wayne and Katherine have rebuilt it stronger, better, and bigger. Among their new additions is a small magenta lighthouse. We spend the morning visiting and leave with a bag of fresh vegetables from Katherine's floating garden.
August 30. Quait Bay to Adventure Cove, Lemmens Inlet, Clayoquot Sound (49 12.3N, 125 51.4W)
By the time we get back to our boat from visiting Wayne and Katherine, the wind has started to blow. We motor south against wind and tide to Tofino where we find a howling wind raging through the harbor. There are only two spaces left on the 4th St dock: one is impossible to get to in the strong wind and the second is too small. We turn and ride the last of the flood tide north into Lemmens Inlet and into Adventure Cove. This is the cove where the crew of the Boston ship Columbia Rediviva overwintered in 1792 and built a small shipyard at which they constructed the sloop Adventure. The exact location of the cove was lost to history until 1966 when an amateur historian tracked it down by matching the scenery in a painting of the cove with the scenery in Clayoquot Sound.
We are dismayed to see the shipyard site has become the recipient of discarded docks from a fish farm and the anchorage area is taken up with floating buildings and buoys. But the scene from the beach is still beautiful and the cove, protected from the winds, is peaceful.