Circumnavigating Vancouver Island 2024

Back in 2003, we circumnavigated Vancouver Island, capturing wonderful memories. Now in 2024 we hope to re-visit this large island, and create some new memories!

21 August 2022 | Portland, Oregon
19 August 2022 | Tongue Point, Astoria, Oregon
14 August 2022 | Friday Harbor, WA
10 August 2022 | Todd Inlet, BC, Canada
08 August 2022 | Lesqueti Island, BC, Canada
04 August 2022 | Heriot Bay, BC, Canada
03 August 2022 | Octopus Islands, BC, Canada
03 August 2022 | Octopus Islands, BC, Canada
31 July 2022 | Lagoon Cove, BC, Canada
30 July 2022 | Echo Bay, BC, Canada
28 July 2022 | Port McNeill, BC, Canada
22 July 2022 | Oliver Cove, BC, Canada
22 July 2022 | Windy Bay, BC, Canada
19 July 2022 | Hartley Bay, BC, Canada
18 July 2022 | Kumealon Inlet, BC, Canada
17 July 2022 | Prince Rupert, BC, Canada
16 July 2022 | Foggy Bay, Alaska
15 July 2022 | Meyer's Chuck, Alaska
14 July 2022 | Dora Bay, Alaska
13 July 2022 | Ketchikan, Alaska

Back in Portland

21 August 2022 | Portland, Oregon
George Stonecliffe | Sunny and 90s
Sunny and 90 degrees, we arrived back at Portland Yacht Club in the afternoon. Our son, Ted's, family met us at the dock to help us unload kayaks, unused provisions, dirty laundry, and all sorts of other items headed home for storage off the boat. We are very grateful for the engine
mechanic's work in Ketchikan. Since Ketchikan we motored 224 hours with the new engine parts and mechanical adjustments. 1364 nautical miles traveled from Ketchikan to Portland. That's an average of 6 knots per hour. Our engine is doing great! Thank you to everyone along the
way who wished us well, and the prayers shared on our behalf.

Traveling Down the Washington State Coast

19 August 2022 | Tongue Point, Astoria, Oregon
George Stonecliffe
Neah Bay, WA was 12-1/2 hours from Friday Harbor for 'Julia Max'. The highlight of this portion of our trip was thousands of rhinoceros auklet birds that were diving for innumerable tasty fingerlings. After spending the night anchored in Neah Bay, we weighed anchor and headed around
Cape Flattery towards the Columbia River Bar and Astoria, OR. Almost immediately we were delighted to see five separate sightings of tufted puffin birds. Their fast wing beat, their diving, and then their returning to their rocky ledge nest with a beak full of fingerling fish is a remarkable sight.
Not too long afterward we had two separate sightings of adult green turtles that were taking the ocean currents north into colder waters. Twenty miles offshore Sue spotted a sea lion swimming along heading south. Off of La Push, WA we had a start! A US Air Force fighter jet came upon
us about 300' above the water, and did a tight turn around the stern of our boat applying afterburners to maintain their tight turn, and then took off to the coast line 20 miles away and beyond! What a surprising and thunderous event! As we continued south, we were delighted in a colorful
sunset. But we were apprehensive in a moonless night sky, and no visibility. The previous trip south, we ran into a crab pot off Gray's Harbor. So this time we stayed 20 miles out, thus reducing our chances of running into any crabpot buoys. There wasn't enough wind to sail. The sea
state was confused between opposing swell directions, and occasional light wave activity. As the sun came up we were past Gray's Harbor, and the seas were more confused. Unfortunately, we missed our approach time to the Columbia River Bar which has to be after the 'Slack Before
Flood'. So we waited 8 hours, and sailed around in light winds until the right time came up at 1412 in the afternoon. This was a Friday, and the salmon recreational fishing was going great guns. 100 recreational fishing boats were around Buoy 10, while another hundred boats were fishing
the eleven miles from Buoy 10 up river to Astoria. Lots of dodging boats and fishing lines in the water! This last stretch was good sailing from just after Buoy 10 all the way to Tongue Point where we anchored for the night. The offshore section was 32 hours long. We were most grateful to
be in the Columbia River and in our home waters!

Arrival in Friday Harbor!

14 August 2022 | Friday Harbor, WA
George Stonecliffe | Sunny, wall-to-wall blue sky
US Customs was accomplished through the phone app 'CBP ROAM'. The Roche Harbor Port of Entry asked questions about boat location, food on board, and if we had the latest Customs Decal#...which we did. We then headed to Reid Harbor on Stuart Island for the night. Rising early, we travelled at slack current the remaining two hours to Friday Harbor! It's sunny, a great summer day to arrive at our condo. We refueled, did laundry, disposed of garbage, and will get some rest. We plan to take Julia Max to Portland in the next 4-5 days, depending on the weather.

Butchart Gardens in Sidney!

10 August 2022 | Todd Inlet, BC, Canada
George Stonecliffe
We motored and sailed from Nanaimo through Dodd Narrows and south to Sidney where we are presently anchored in Todd Inlet next to Butchart Gardens. Tomorrow, Thursday August 11, we will enjoy visiting Butchart Gardens once again. The Gardens are mature, but they are
constantly maintaining, refreshing, and upgrading their offerings. The last time we visited we heard they had 75 gardeners on staff. That sounds way low of a figure. Maybe they have 750 :) Hope to share some photos!

Desolation Sound Stops

08 August 2022 | Lesqueti Island, BC, Canada
George Stonecliffe
After stopping in Heriot Bay for necessities, we headed to Pendrell Sound, a very special place. The Sound does not flush with the tide, meaning the water temperature warms up during the summer, and maintains a 70+F temperature. George serviced the Max Prop zinc, polished the
propeller blades, and scaped some of the barnacles and marine growth from the rudder area. Sue swam around the boat a few times until tired. We shared the end of Pendrell Sound with over 75 cruising boats, some of which were 100' yachts. The highlight was apparently a Happy Hour
put on by the biggest yacht, attracting 150 people in their dinghies. The next day we headed to the small port of Lund which happens to be the northern end of Hwy 101 which goes to South America. The highlights of Lund for us included Nancy's Bakery/Deli where we bought cinnamon
rolls, a Nanaimo Bar, a large Chocolate Chip cookie, and a Monte Cristo Sandwich. In Lund we had tied up to the inside of the breakwater for the night. In the afternoon Sue spotted ten Black Turnstones. We were thrilled to be so close, and able to watch the birds' interactions with each
other. Also while tied up in Lund, a Canadian Coast Guard Ship pulled in and tied up next to us. Their mission specialty has to do with the Fisheries. With four crew and three scientists on board, they visit various fishing spots where they will troll, they will long line (1300'), and they will trap
for shrimp, actually setting their own strings of pots. They are giving their Fishery information to the government to help them determine when to open and close the government fishing seasons. Fascinating! The next morning we headed south to Lesqueti Island on the way to Nanaimo. All
this time the weather has been wall-to-wall blue sky and sunshine!

Heriot Bay Marina- the Oasis

04 August 2022 | Heriot Bay, BC, Canada
George Stonecliffe
A couple hours south of the Octopus Islands is the Heriot Bay Marina on the east side of Quadra Island. Upon arriving, we were able to buy diesel fuel, groceries, obtain water, shore power, rid ourselves of garbage, and do the laundry: all the necessities! But having lunch and dinner
ashore was a welcome change for us. Tomorrow we head towards Pendrell Sound where the waters are about 70 degrees due to a tidal phenomenon that traps the waters from the cooler waters of the outer area.
Vessel Name: Julia Max
Vessel Make/Model: 45' Passport/Peterson Custom Ketch
Hailing Port: Portland, Oregon, USA
Crew: George and Sue Stonecliffe
About: The summer of 2024 will be spent heading north from Portland, OR to British Columbia, Canada; circumnavigating Vancouver Island, visiting Princess Louisa Inlet, and hopefully staying smoke free!
Julia Max's Photos - Pacific NW 2011
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Chemainus, BC has murals all over town that tell the history of the town!  Fascinating!
Chemainus, BC has murals all over town that tell the history of the town! Fascinating!
Added 3 June 2011