Diva Di's Cruising Adventures

Day 46 - Baie Fine (The Pool), ON (North Channel)

14 July 2016
Day 46 - Wed 13 Jul 2016
Anchored - Baie Fine (The Pool), ON (North Channel)

[photo: our view from our anchorage in The Pool]

Around 2000 last night I checked the weather and saw an update for severe thunderstorms, so I opened the Radar Now app on the phone and got two things: a pinpoint of our location and a nasty-looking squall heading straight NE across the North Channel towards us. We could not see the edge of the squall yet as the hills and trees of our island prevented that.

With our anchor dug into good sand, I was not worried about that, but concerned how the large canvas Bimini on top of the flybridge might fare if the winds got to 40 kts or so. Rather than take a chance, I asked Diane to help me fold it back and secure it. We also secured our burgees and flags, which took about 20 minutes, all tolled. I read on the flybridge trying to keep cool, since it was still a rather warm day, waiting for the squall to arrive. It never did.

I could see the tops of darkening clouds appearing over the hill of the island, but when I checked Radar Now again a few times, it appeared as if the squall had stopped moving and was actually dissipating. We did that work for nothing, and had to reverse it in the morning, but better to be safe. We enjoyed a very calm evening and night, but it still so warm in the berth that Diane and I started our sleep in the main cabin. Later, she went to the berth, but I stayed up where it was cooler.

After a delicious, but modest, helping of French toast, we weighed anchor about 0800 and had a glorious run up to the entrance to Baie Fine. The wind was behind us at about the same speed as the boat, so there was no breeze, and the sun was shining not only directly on us, but reflecting strongly off the water at us, as well. I was bathed in sweat and actually took off my shirt. I am not complaining, mind you.

Cruising down Baie Fine, you are in a fjord with rather high ridges of exposed white quartz, and it is a beautiful spot. As we neared the E end, we saw 5 of the PDQ flotilla heading the other way. We exchanged some greetings on the flotilla working channel as we passed. Winding our way around the final few "corners," we found it to be very lovely. To our surprise there were only 5 boats there. The spot we had wanted to try was completely open and I suspect that was where the flotilla had just vacated.

After settling in, Diane used our handheld depth sounder/thermometer to report that the surface water read 78F. I knew this would be my first real swim of this cruise in Canadian waters. It felt just a tad chilly at first but within a minute it was very nice. Diane, meanwhile, was in her bathing suit in her cute little folding chair on the foredeck reading. Drying off in the light breeze on the flybridge, I started reading another novel, when Diane served lunch.

I gave her some options about our next few days of travel and stops, and then we decided to get going with the dinghy to the start of the trail to Topaz Lake. The tiny dock and beach was easy to spot, but the trail was a lot rockier and rugged than we had thought. We made it fine and saw at least a dozen folks along the way, mostly going up. We did not time it, but it seemed like well over 30 minutes. My knee held up fine, but we got a bit winded until we slowed down.

You have to climb very carefully down to Lake Topaz, and it really is a pretty shade of blue. Supposedly no life lives there, but since the rocks forming the edge at the water were slimy, there is some life. There were about 8 60-somethings already there enjoying the water. Diane got her feet wet, but I went all the way in and found it very refreshing. It was not quite the 78F of our anchorage, but maybe 74 at the surface. It is an abandoned quarry and over 200 feet deep not far from the edges.

As we chatted with boaters from northern Michigan, they were amazed that we had come from FL and had done all the cruising up here that we did last year and this one so far. Yes, you are far from home, but a long cruise of this type, even though it may be thousands of miles, is still just one day of boating strung after another.

The hike down was easier on the cardiovascular system but harder on my left knee. The surgery in Feb might have improved it since the latest injury, but it still does not feel "right." Little inadvertent twists while bearing a larger than normal load (like stepping downhill) make it twinge and you just know you are close to another injury. So, easy goes it. There are lots of health issues that could be devastating, but a mechanical injury can make for a very difficult remainder to our adventure.

Back on Diva Di, it was late afternoon and time for a cold beverage. Unless you are in the galley, the head (bathroom), or the berths, you have great visibility outside. Even as I blog, I am enjoying the gorgeous scenery surrounding us and feeling, as always, so blessed to be experiencing all this. Diane got back to her bathing suit and chair on the foredeck and with this gorgeous sunshine, low humidity, and moderate temperatures (in other words - perfect!), I knew she was happy.

Supper tonight was pan-seared wild salmon we got in Parry Sound, oven-crisped leftover fries from our lunch yesterday, and canned corn. We do need some fresh provisions, but that will have to await our stop at Little Current tomorrow. The rest of the wonderful evening was spent reading and enjoying the beautiful surroundings and weather.
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Vessel Name: Diva Di
Vessel Make/Model: PDQ MV34 Power Cat
Hailing Port: Punta Gorda, FL
Crew: Duane and Diane

Diva Di Crew

Who: Duane and Diane
Port: Punta Gorda, FL