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D & D Nagle aboard MV DavidEllis
SV Windhover
looks pretty good to me!
09/10/2011, Scow Bay, Gay Passage, Bunsby Islands, West Vancouver Island

Anna Maria and Peter's SV Windhover

Change In Plans
photo -- Sea Otter Cove, NW Vancouver Island -- courtesy Wade Biggs
08/31/2011, Southbound From Ketchikan

Change in plans: we'd planned to winter over the boat in SE AK again this coming winter, but family issues have caused us to reconsider. We are now enroute south to Bodega Bay via the Queen Charlotte Islands, west side Vancouver Island and Pacific Coast. Just short of 2000 miles; we expect to be tied up at Spud Point by end of September. 

Dave & Jeannie, who'd come to Juneau expecting a trip out to Sitka; they were good sports about the change, and the weather!  2 feet of rain in one week!  Fortunately some sun before they left

They did resist being shanghai-ed though for the entire voyage south and to that end our buddy Wade flew into Ketchikan to make the trip south with us

We will likely have very little communication connection for the next month. We do check in each morning with Barbara on the Great Northern Boater's Net, so somebody does actually know where we are. That's via SSB / HF / Ham radio.

I know this is short with little detail; I promise to fill in the Blake with a long blog post when we've got US phone service down around Seattle.

Juneau to Ketchikan
lots of rain!
08/18/2011, photo is Sawyer Glacier, Tracy Arm

Dave and Jeanie, good friends from work arrived in Juneau 18 August. Our/their original plan had been a cruise out to Sitka, and a departure (for them from there), but plans have changed - semper gumbi - and J & D have graciously accommodated the change. After some acclimation to SE AK weather, purchase of proper footwear and touristing, we departed from Douglas Harbor the afternoon of 19 Aug in pleasant weather, making our way down to Taku Harbor. Just a couple of local fishboats tied up at the float - lots of room, and we're planning an early get-away down to Tracy Arm to see the glacier, so I tied up on the outside of the float.

The wind (and heavy rain) came up overnight. Taku opens to the SW. Tied to the outside of the float, stern to the opening, we were taking a stiff wind on the port quarter. Extra fenders between the starboard side and the dock where we're being pushed by wind and seas. Ideally, in these conditions, we should be inside the float, at the far end, bow towards the opening; but it's too late to move (as there's a rock reef downwind from the end of the float, which we could easily be blown down onto trying to come around the far end of the float). There's also a solo float (not connected to shore) which the fishboats use. I see now that it's tucked inside to the south of the entrance, protected by the peninsula behind. Previous stays at Taku, we've ignored this float in favor of being able to walk to shore with the dog(s). Nothing for it now, but to wait it out.

20 August, staying rather than heading down to Tracy Arm; reports of flooding throughout the Juneau area; wind shifting to the south, giving us a little protection. Took some walks ashore and talked with folks off the fishboats.

21 August, 0715 underway, wind has reduced to 15kts out of the south 3' seas. I found that the manual bilge pump suction hose was blocking the float switch for the electric bilge pump - in other words, we could be taking water into the engine room and the switch would be unable to turn on the pump. If not actually in the engine room to see it, we'd know nothing was amiss until the high water alarm went off. I am considering some modifications to the system (if that sounds familiar, it's because I'm considering modifications to most systems, most of the time - makes Dorothy crazy!)

Arriving at Tracy Arm, we headed up to Sawyer Glacier. It was overcast as we ran up the narrow channel, rather than the brilliant sun we've been lucky enough to have there in the past. Much more water coming down the cliffs in multiple falls, due to the heavy rain experienced over the past few days. Also more bergs and bits in the water than previous trips, making the passage a chore, but, when we finally got to where we could see, it was very much worth it. Sawyer Glacier is simply brilliant, even in this muted light. I'm happy we were able to get there for Dave & Jeannie who really haven't had the best trip so far.

One interesting item from the trip up Tracy Arm: in the Arm we saw a large tug, converted to a live-aboard dive boat (it appears) which we previously saw at Baronoff Warm Springs a month ago or so. A group of folks, maybe 20, off that tug, all in dry suits, were sitting, standing, sliding and crawling on a large-ish berg up towards the glacier; which got me to thinking about the numerous reports I've read of people lost, doing just that, when the berg decided to swap ends... Oh well, not that many years ago, I'd have done the same thing. I can hear my guru Banzai Bozo asking: "are you a xxxxx or a pirate?"

Overnight in Tracy Arm Cove.

22 Aug 0900 start, rain, little wind, forecast is S 15kts, 3' today, worse tonight / tomorrow, so on to Petersburg rather than poking into Gambier. Got into P'burg just after sunset, lots of fishboat activity, assigned to the same slip -- #46 in the north (old) harbor - as several times in the past. Just down from us, end-tied at the newer docks we could see FV Time Bandit and FV Cornelia Marie from the Discovery Channel show "Deadliest Catch". 23 Aug D & J checked out the shops in P'burg, Dot went to the grocery and I worked in the engine room.

24 Aug we timed ourselves for a southbound transit down Wrangell Narrows; light rain, good vis and a drama-less passage. Exiting the narrows into sunlight and the few miles to Wrangell, we were passed by a beautiful boat - Sea Lion, which we admired as they passed. We stayed for two days in Wrangell catching up with friends we'd made this past winter - Don & Vicki, Ron & Helen, Clay (aka Tiger) and new acquaintances as well. 25 Aug we had sunshine! We brought aboard the items kindly stored this summer by Ron (F/V Chatham) and re-mounted our sails on the furlers.

26 Aug we cruised down to Anan Bay to see the bears. All that rain last week - 2 feet! in Juneau - kept the salmon out of the rivers / creeks, but now they're back and the bears are feasting. Because the holding in the anchorage at Anan isn't so great, I stayed aboard while Dorothy, Dave & Jeannie went to shore. I visited with an Aussie couple, anchored nearby in brilliant sunshine. Reports from the intrepid shore party that bears were everywhere - even the trail -- and quite active. That evening we pulled into Santa Anna cove and who did we see? Sea Lion, who promptly hailed us and invited us to dinner! Apparently some of our radio traffic with Wrangell Harbor had so amused them, they wished to see the responsible party in person. Steve, Shiree, John, Dave & ??? (oh crap, I've forgotten!) were gracious hosts, feeding us king crab! and great conversation.

27-28 August into Ketchikan at Bar Harbor. J & D touristed, Dorothy shopped and I played with my toys in the engine room. And the dogs? Rusty and Rascal continue to add a bit of chaos to daily life aboard M/V DavidEllis.

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Who: Mike (Dave) and Dorothy Nagle
Port: Sebastopol, CA, USA
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