Around Vancouver Island 2013

Vessel Name: Reborn
Vessel Make/Model: 1952 Wood Ketch out of Orkney Islands
Hailing Port: Nanaimo, BC Canada
Crew: Moe and Laurie
Moe, the Skipper, has many years of sailing experience. He owned his first sailing dinghy when he was 15 and sailed with his friends around the Sunshine Coast of BC. Later he discovered windsurfing and devoted many years to his board. [...]
Extra: Reborn is a 42' fibre glass over wood ketch built in the Orkney islands in 1952. In her life time she has been redone enough times to carry her name with pride. Reborn has served as a pilot boat, a pleasure motor craft and now as a ketch.
21 August 2013 | Winter Cove to Nanaimo
21 August 2013 | Sidney Spit to Winter Cove, Saturna Island
21 August 2013 | Victoria to Sidney Spit
21 August 2013 | Sooke to Victoria
14 August 2013 | Bamfield to Sooke
13 August 2013 | Ucluelet and Ucluelet to Bamfield
06 August 2013 | Ucluelet
06 August 2013 | Joe's Bay to Ucluelet
06 August 2013 | Tofino to Joe's Bay
06 August 2013 | Tofino
02 August 2013 | Bacchante Bay to Tofino
02 August 2013 | Hot Springs Cove to Bacchante Bay
02 August 2013 | Friendly Cove to Hot Springs Cove
02 August 2013 | Bodega Cove to Friendly Cove
02 August 2013 | Tahsis to Bodega Cove, Kendrick Island
28 July 2013 | Dixie Cove to Tahsis
27 July 2013 | Walter's Cove to Dixie Cove, Hohoae Island
25 July 2013 | Bunsby Islands to Walter's Cove, Kyoquot
25 July 2013 | Columbia Cove to Bunsby Islands
24 July 2013 | Walter's Cove, Kyoquot
Recent Blog Posts
21 August 2013 | Winter Cove to Nanaimo

Day 39

Day 39 – August 29, 2013 Monday

21 August 2013 | Sidney Spit to Winter Cove, Saturna Island

Day 38

Day 38 – August 11, 2013 Sunday

21 August 2013 | Victoria to Sidney Spit

Day 37

Day 37 – August 10, 2013 Saturday

21 August 2013 | Sooke to Victoria

Day 36

Day 36 – August 9, 2013 Friday

14 August 2013 | Bamfield to Sooke

Day 35

Day 35 – August 8, 2013 Thursday

13 August 2013 | Ucluelet and Ucluelet to Bamfield

Day 33 and Day 34

Day 33 and Day 34, August 6 and 7, 2013 Tuesday and Wednesday

Day 13

19 July 2013 | Bull Harbour to Fisherman Bay, Nissen Bight
Laurie / Sunny
Day 13 – July 17, 2013 Tuesday

This is the day that we cross the infamous Nahwitti Bar. I woke up today feeling relatively calm and confident about our passage having released my anxiety one way or another last night. Poor Skipper! I must admit that I did not sleep well so getting up at 5:30 was abit of a chore. Moe had done everything he needed to do and had made the coffee, toast and some of his Westcoast oatmeal. We each had one piece of toast but saved the oatmeal for later.

We talked over the VHF with our traveling companions and they were ready to leave at our agreed upon time of 8:00 a.m. This would give us enough time to arrive at the bar by high water slack, the only time one should be crossing to go out to sea. As we pulled up anchor the rest of the boats in the harbour were doing the same. We all wanted to get the slack. We followed Witte Raaf out of the harbour, At Last followed and then Porpoise. As we came to the entrance to Bull Harbour we saw Talagoa in the channel. They are also traveling with Witte Raaf. That made quite a flotilla crossing the bar!

One of my fears in crossing the bar was the chance of whirlpools and swirly water. This is what I have experienced when crossing any body of water that requires a slack tide for safe crossing. Moe told me that this one was different, the only thing we had to worry about was big crashing waves and since we were crossing with the right tide and the right weather the only thing we would notice would be the swell of the ocean. And he was 100% right! So far all the places that have caused me the most anxiety have turned out to be pretty easy. Seymour Narrows being the first and now Nahwitti Bar.

We all had a very pleasant trip as we headed out to sea. By 9:17 we were abeam Cape Sutil. The only sea life we saw was a big sea otter laying on his back having breakfast. He let us get quite close before he disappeared under the sea. I think he must have seen me pointing my camera at him as that’s when he made his exit.

About an hour later we started to feel the SE wind. We listened to the weather updates which forecast a 20-30 knot wind. We talked with our traveling companions and we all decided it would be best to tuck into Fisherman Bay at Nissen Bight to wait out the weather. The bay turned out to be just big enough for the four sailboats, Witte Raaf, Talagoa, Porpoise and us. At Last, being a powerboat, was far ahead of us by then.

We all anchored and settled in for some lunch and relaxation. I brought out the binoculars and spotted a couple of very big sea lions poking around the kelp beds not far from our boat. Sea life, at last! As I scanned the shoreline I noticed something moving there and spied it with the binoculars. Darned if it wasn’t three people with back packs walking the beach! After our lunch I went down to the galley to read and have a nap while Moe stood watch. I was down for about an hour. The wind was blowing pretty hard so I stuffed earplugs into my ears to cut the noise down.

When I came back up to the wheelhouse the wind was still blowing strong, possibly stronger than when I went down to nap. I would say about 25 knots at least. Moe said that two dinghies had gone out and were at the beach; Talagoa’s crew, with the crew from Witte Raaf in one and some of the crew from Porpoise in the other. We agreed that it would be nice to go ashore but not with this wind blowing.

Moe brought up a deck of cards and the crib board and we were just about to get into a game when we noticed that Porpoise was drifting. They were dangerously close to Witte Raaf! We abandoned the card game immediately to stand guard. We could see that Porpoise was taking action to avoid a collision but somehow Witte Raaf was starting to drift as well and was coming right our way! OMG, what do we do!!? Moe quickly put out more scope on the anchor line and asked me to get the fenders ready just in case they bumped into us. I was busy untying fenders and watching Witte Raaf get closer and closer. When they were about 4 feet away from us with Porpoise just on the other side of them and then suddenly both Porpoise and Witte Raaf started travelling together. Porpoise had hooked onto Witte Raaf’s anchor and was pulling her away! Not that this was a good situation by any means, but it prevented a collision with us.

Keep in mind that Witte Raaf was unattended at this time and some of Porpoise’s crew was ashore with their dinghy. Porpoise motored out about half a mile with Witte Raaf attached. Moe called in a pan-pan to the Prince Rupert Coast Guard. By now Porpoise was motoring backwards with Witte Raaf and had been hailed by the Coast Guard. We both communicated with them while tooting our horns in an attempt to alert the crew ashore. Finally I spotted them on shore heading back. Moe suggested that Porpoise come along side us in an attempt to stabilise and possibly get the anchors sorted out but Porpoise declined as they didn’t want to involve any more boats. All the while this was going on we were getting hit with blasts of off shore wind up to 30+ knots.

At last we saw Talagoa’s dinghy coming this way with the crew from Witte Raaf. Thank goodness! They boarded their boat and in a short while had pulled up the anchors to get a look. They were both fouled with a large ball of kelp. After a few minutes of struggling to release the kelp, the anchors were released from each other. Witte Raaf motored back to the bay and safely anchored. Porpoise came in after Witte Raaf was secured but had difficulty getting a good hook to the bottom. Eventually they gave up and motored out of Fisherman’s Bay to another part of Nissan Bight. They continued to have difficulty but did finally get a solid anchor.

The wind continued to blow at least 20 knots for the rest of the afternoon. Moe and I stayed on anchor watch together until it was time to get some dinner ready. I had marinated a strip loin steak and presented Moe with the menu of the day – “Marinated Strip Loin Steak, Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Dilled Carrots”. Though I suggested we could eat in the wheelhouse and keep watch he said we should be civilized and eat in the galley, which we did. After dinner we were both back in the wheelhouse on watch and resumed our game of Crib. I kicked his butt. Of course he had had a trying day and hasn’t played Crib for ages, so I’ll give him a break this time. I did take his dime though!

Card game done, so was my skipper and he retired to the bunk for a little nap. He was briefly interrupted with a bear sighting on the beach. The wind continues to blow hard; I would estimate at least a steady 15 knots with gusts up to 20-25. The clouds have come in and I’m a little worried about our rest for this night. Not sure what tomorrow will hold at this point, but we’re hoping to make it to Sea Otter Cove. May the weather be with us!

About & Links