02 August 2013 | Bodega Cove to Friendly Cove
Laurie / Foggy
Day 25 – July 29, 2013 Monday
I have to admit, since embarking on this adventure, I haven’t met a Monday I didn’t like. This Monday began slow and easy. We woke up enveloped in a cool blanket of fog. It had to happen eventually, we knew. After all, we are on the west coast of Vancouver Island. I’ve heard August called Fogust. It did make for a very quiet morning with some good fog shots of ‘Porpoise’ in the mist.
Once I got myself out of bed, dressed and cleaned up, I set about making some pancakes. This time I made them from scratch; no more bad mixes! Moe remembered that my son, Derek, had added bacon bits to the pancakes he made when we were in Tofino on the long weekend and, once the suggestion was made, the bacon bits went into the batter. I also cut up an apple and made some apple/raisin sauce to go with our pancakes. Breakfast was a hit!
Moe wanted to talk to John on ‘Porpoise’ so after breakfast he rowed over in James. While he was gone, I took advantage of the hot water and washed my hair. Have I mentioned that we have hot water only when we light our diesel Dickinson stove? When the weather is too warm for a hot oven in the galley, the crew goes without a hot water shower. Eventually he came back, but soon after John arrived at our boat. They were missing a few miles of coast on their charts so asked to borrow ours so they could study them. We were more than happy to oblige.
By 10:30 the fog had lifted and it was time to pull up anchor. We prepared the boat and by 11:09 the anchor was on the deck and we were on our way. The sun was now shining and there was about a 10 knot wind blowing directly on our bow. We didn`t have far to travel from Bodega Cove to Friendly Cove, a distance of about 9 nautical miles. For the most part, it was an uneventful trip with no wildlife sightings and no rescues to listen to on the VHF.
As we approached Friendly Cove we noticed the fog hadn`t quite gone right out to sea. In fact, it stopped leaving land right at Friendly Cove and stayed there. We left the bright sun and entered the cove in the fog. Not that it was thick fog, but enough to blot out the sun. We saw `Perla Blanca` anchored on the north side of the cove and picked a spot to their port side to anchor. Our hook was set at 1:26. The trip had taken us about one and a half hours. Before long ‘Porpoise’ arrived and anchored to our port side.
There was a cold 10 knot off shore wind blowing on our bow so we didn’t want to leave Reborn too soon. I made us some lunch and then prepared and put dinner in the oven. By this time we were comfortable with our anchor and prepared to go to shore. We noticed that ‘Porpoise’ crew were leaving at the same time so we all arrived at the dock together. In the long run, this was a very economical event. There is a ‘landing fee’ charged by the native band here to assist in the maintenance and development of this historical place. As we were a large group, they were kind enough to give us a discount.
Quick history lesson from the plaque that has been set upon a stone obelisk at the head of Friendly Cove:
Discovered by Captain James Cook in March 1778. In June 1789 Spain took possession and established and maintained a settlement until 1795. The capture of British vessels in 1789 almost led to war, which was avoided by the Nootka Convention 1790. Vancouver and Quadra met here in August 1792 to determine the land to be restored under that convention.
There is a church just up from the public wharf that has all kinds of pictures and writings describing the history of Nootka. There are also two stained glass windows that were donated from the Spanish government, as well as totem poles and other native carvings in the church. We think it is very interesting and cool to be standing where Vancouver and Quadra stood so many years before us.
From the church we explored a trail along the south shore that has been developed. Actually, we thought that the trail has probably been here for many years as this community held a population of about 1500 at one time. The trail took us past a large campsite with many tents. Moe learned that there is to be an event here next weekend to celebrate the history of Nootka. We continued on down the trail, passing the cemetery. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to look closely at the inscriptions on the headstones. A little further down and we found a trail that led us to Jewitt Lake. Moe put his hand in to test the water as I took pictures. It was amazingly warm, more like bath water. Too bad we didn’t have our swimsuits handy as it would have been a great swim! We ventured a little further down the trail and came to some cabins. I believe the cabins are rented out during the summer. They all face the lake and look like wonderful places to stay to ‘get away from it all’. The trail continued on, but we turned around to go check out the lighthouse. On our way back we ran into the ‘Porpoise’ crew and told them what we had found.
The trail is very well maintained and before long we were back at the church and on our way to the lighthouse. In order to get to the lighthouse, a short path must be followed through the trees to the beach where log or beach walking leads to a variety of steps up to the lighthouse. We encountered handmade stone steps, wooden steps, pathways and finally a long metal ramp that spanned a deep crevice and ended at the lighthouse station. From memory, I would say there are about three or four buildings besides the lighthouse itself. We signed the guestbook and enjoyed a fantastic view from high above our anchorage. Well, at least as far as we could see until we saw only fog. We were not allowed to go into any of the buildings, but did have a brief conversation with the lighthouse keeper as he bolted by to do his weather report.
There is the above-mentioned plaque that we would have liked to see, but it’s placed way out on a rocky point that is accessible only at low tide and with much rock climbing. We chose not to go out there, but did take a picture of a picture of the plaque that was on an information board at the lighthouse station.
It was time to head back to our dinghy. We noticed that there was another sailboat which had come in and anchored. Someone that we have not met previously, nor did we get the opportunity to speak with them as they were away from their boat when we went by. We boarded Reborn and settled in to read our books and wait for dinner to be ready. I did mention that our oven does slow cook very well!
The evening was quiet, with more reading, journaling and Reborn swaying in the small swell. As the fog wraps its cool arms around us, we will be rocked to sleep tonight.