Voyages North

03 June 2018
22 September 2017 | Posted in Seattle
08 September 2017 | Posted at Spencer Spit, San Juan Islands
18 August 2017 | Posted at Spencer Spit, San Juan Islands
17 August 2017 | Olympia
22 August 2016 | posted at Prideaux Haven, Desolation Sound
29 July 2016 | Posted at Hakkai, Fitz Hugh Sound
29 July 2016 | Posted at Hakkai, Fitz Hugh Sound
29 July 2016 | Posted at Hakkai, Fitz Hugh Sound
08 July 2016 | Posted at Ucluelet

Nanoose Harbour. August 30, 2012. 49 16.2N 124 10.2W

10 September 2012
Elsie Hulsizer
Photo: Nanoose Hill with oyster farm at base.

Anchor in Nanoose Harbour? We hadn’t known that was possible. When we’d come up and down this coast before we’d hardly glanced at Nanoose on the chart. It looked deep, unprotected and crisscrossed with foreboding words warning that the harbor was a “controlled area” due to Canadian Navy facilities on shore. We assumed that if we wanted to go to Nanoose, we had to go to Schooner Cove Marina. But Mexi, whom we had met in Alaska last summer, and who had invited us to visit her and her husband at their home in Nanoose, emailed us that it was a good anchorage. She even sent us the exact latitude and longitude of where we should anchor - all the way in the northwest corner.

We crossed Georgia Strait to Nanoose from False Bay on Lasquetti Island. A brisk northwesterly pushed us along. It was one of the best sailing days we’d had all summer and helped make up for the day before when we had had a grueling beat into a stiff southerly to get to Lasquetti.

As we approached Nanoose, we could see the masts at Schooner Cove Marina surrounded by highrise apartments, a reminder that we were approaching the urban area of Nanaimo. We were still leery of the controlled access area, so when we were close to Winchelsea Island, where the control tower for the Whiskey Golf military area sits, Steve called and asked what the regulations were for anchoring in Nanoose Harbour. The man who replied seemed surprised. “There’s no problem. Boats go in there and anchor all the time,” he said.

The wind died as we rounded the corner into the harbor and we motored the rest of the way in, past the naval docks and past a row of oyster rafts, all the way to the northwest corner where we anchored under the 250 m Nanoose Hill. Steep, dry and sparsely populated with only a few houses, it made me think of something from the U.S. Southwest. Except that an oyster harvesting boat was hauling up bags of oyster just a few yards from us.

Mexi and her husband Adrian (Mexi is from Mexico and Adrian is from Holland) met us on the beach and drove us up the hill to their house in their little Fiat 500. From their living room window, we looked down on Nanoose harbor --and a group of deer in their garden. We enjoyed a delightful afternoon and were served a delicious dinner. Like us, Mexi and Adrian and visited Gardner Canal that summer and it was fun to talk about it with them.

After dinner we walked back down the hill to a quiet evening on Osprey in a pleasant protected anchorage.

One of the delights of cruising is meeting interesting people. In this case the people also introduced us to a new and interesting anchorage.
Vessel Name: Osprey
Vessel Make/Model: Annapolis 44 sloop
Hailing Port: Seattle
Crew: Steve and Elsie Hulsizer (author of Glaciers, Bears and Totems and Voyages to Windward)
Elsie and Steve Hulsizer have sailed northwest waters since arriving in Seattle via sailboat from Boston in 1979. [...]
2017: local cruising including South Puget Sound and San Juan Islands 2016:north up West Coast VI, across QC Sound to central BC coast 2015: trip to SE Alaska 2014: Seymour and Belize Inlets through Nakwakto Rapids 2013: SE Alaska and back. 2012: from Seattle up the west coast of Vancouver [...]
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Osprey's Photos -