Thursday, September 30, 2010


We've stopped into Ganges on Salt Spring overnight again -- it's the 'hub' of Gulf Island cruising and the only place you can fuel up, buy groceries, offload garbage and fill up water tanks all at the same place!

But this morning we'll head over to Glenthorne Passage on Prevost Island for the last few days of this holiday ... this is what it looked like when we dinghied in there the other day to have a look -- absolutely idyllic!

We've had mostly rainy, gray misty weather the whole month, but it's been fun regardless. We squeezed in visits with Monica on Mayne and Mike on Galianom and seen lots of wildlife ...

We'll be back in Victoria on Sunday afternoon or early Monday morning -- back to the routine Tuesday morning! :-)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


This is the best of the pics I took from the 'bluffs' on Galiano Island the other day!

Monday, September 20, 2010


Yay, I've managed to get online again for only about the third time in this trip!

We are in Montague Harbour on Galiano Island now, and this morning our friend Mike (who is the wharfinger in Whaler Bay) came to take us out for breakfast. After brekkie he took us up to a look-out over Active Pass and I'd love to show you the pics but this connection won't let me -- I've just tried for the past hour! I'll keep trying ...

We'll be here for a day or two anyway -- the next few days are supposed to be sunny (almost as rare as an online connection these days!) and tomorrow night will be the full moon, too, so it will be lovely here.

Tomorrow we'll be going through Active Pass by dinghy, all being well -- I hope to connect with my friend Monica on Mayne, and then we'll go to Sturdies Bay on Galiano and have coffee with Mike again before we leave the area -- possibly Wednesday.

I'll try to upload pics again in the morning!

Friday, September 17, 2010


Aaarrggghhhh - one of my biggest frustrations about cruising is not being able to get online! We are in Ganges now, but I have been trying to do a blog update for several days unsuccessfully. Our stay at Bedwill was lovely, as always, but we only went in the pool once -- the weather has been mostly gray and drizzly, with some sun about every third day or so.

The view from our anchorage at Bedwell out into Boundary (the border between the U.S.A. and Canada) Pass ...

One of the fun things about cruising is seeing old familiar West Coast boats ... the Pacific YellowFin is one of them:

That's all the photos I dare try to upload for one day. We'll be in Ganges (on Salt Spring Island) until Sunday, and then moving on to Montague Harbour on Galiano Island for a day or two!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


One of the reasons we waited three years to haul out (it should happen every two years) is because it's SUCH a nightmare every time! Not only do we have to watch our house being lifted out of its natural environment (a very stressful event!), but the folks who are in the business of hauling boats seem to think they are above the law or something.

Case in point: after going over every detail, with the company, of what was to happen with our haul-out (because we got so badly burned last time), we estimated that we would be 'out', at most, 24 hours, and that the final cost might be as high as $1200.

What actually happened: we were 'out' for 33 hours, but more importantly, the final cost? $2100!! It adds up for all kinds of reasons: things they said that Michael could take care -- for example, grinding the props -- they made sure they did, instead, and then billed us $70 an hour for 2.5 hours. They claimed that the 'regular' pressure wash (at $160) couldn't get all the seaweed, etc., off the hull, so they had to go over it all again -- total cost, $350. $350 for pressure washing the bottom of a 38' boat???

Their website, when I booked the haul-out, claimed that the actual hauling out would cost $9.50 per foot -- they told me that was outdated and that the new price was $11 per foot. I reminded them that they'd need to honor the listed price, or that would 'false advertising' -- the final bill? $11 per foot, and of course, in the interim, they made sure the website was updated!

Bottom line: they have your boat, up high and dry, and it's not going back in the water until you pay the bill.

So we paid the bill ... and then spent the last several days, while trying to also relax in Tod Inlet, going over the invoice and preparing the letter we'll be writing to them. And trying to recover from yet another haul-out nightmare.


Here's what it looked like, anyway... see that big shed in the background with the big open door? That's where the boat has to go. They 'walk' it up onto a big 'cradle' first:

And then they flip a switch, and the cradle is slowly, slowly, slowly, winched up into the shed:

...until the boat is completely out of the water:

As soon as it's secure, they start to pressure wash...

And then there's that prop-shining --here's the 'before' picture, and as you can see, they are full of barnacles, etc:

And here is the new, improved prop:

Enough about the haul-out. Other than maybe getting a part-time job to pay off the MasterCard when we get home, I won't have to think about THAT again for a few years, thank God!

Tod Inlet is always lovely to visit ... it's a little fjord just in behind the world-famous Butchart Gardens, and it was the perfect place to recover ... and sit out two days of rain!

By our second day in there, the place had started to fill up because Butchart Gardens has their final Saturday night fireworks show on the September long weekend:

Didn't get any decent pics of the fireworks but it was the best I'd ever seen -- and I've seen lots of fireworks!

We had to go by dinghy over to the area where the fireworks could be seen, so an equally fun part of the adventure was plucking our way through the anchorage back to the Wind Walker in the pitch black afterwards -- we managed to miss all manner of anchor ropes, other dinghies, and even large yachts, and made it back to our boat safely!

Yesterday the rain let up long enough to leave Tod and make our way to Cowichan Bay where we needed to get fuel and water before moving on to the next stop, which will be Russell Island, just off Fulford Harbour on Salt Spring.

Oh, and of course, much knitting has been accomplished -- furiously, I might add (I usually prefer to knit peacefully)! More pics next update...

Sunday, September 5, 2010

This Blog Post Brought to you by...Hailey!

Hello Everyone!
Mum has invited me to blog on her behalf today, letting everyone know that all is well aboard the MV Windwalker (and the Co-Captains), and that they survived the long overdue, and somewhat stressful (expensive) haul-out experience last week.

Currently at anchor in a little spot at Tod Inlet (photo below- from Google Images), around the peninsula...they are finally easing into the holiday experience, after getting over the shock of the final bill for the 'Shave & a Haircut'. Mum says - Thank goodness for MasterCard!

Their plans are to navigate through to Bedwell Harbour on Pender Island (see September 2009 blog posts for photos from last year) early this week, a favorite spot to begin the holiday (which also has internet access), so you'll be hearing from mum soon.

In the meantime, she's got lots of knitting on the needles (and other places too!), and the time this month to put her feet up, and do it guilt-free. More socks please, mum...and maybe, finally...a sweater for me? xoxo's...

Signing off with this photo of Fireworks at the World Famous Butchart Gardens - where mum and dad enjoyed the Season Finale show via dingy picnic last night!

Hope you are enjoying your labour/memorial day weekend!