Wildlife and Scenery

Posted 24 July 2010

For the last week we were just amaze with the wildlife. We saw a grizzly and a black bear, lots of birds and dolphins. The scenery is just breath taking.

We were at anchor in Port Neville for 2 days waiting for the gale force winds to subside. We were able to test our riding sail during this time. Vida Nova tend to 'sail' at anchor and the riding sail cut that by half, definitely worth it.

We decided that we could as well prepare the boat for heavy weather and in the process test our storm sails with the windvane. On Friday morning we were all ready and geared up for the forecast 15 to 25 knots of wind.  Off cause on Friday the water was as flat as a mirror. We motored and towards late afternoon the winds did pickup. Was blowing between 15 to 25 at times gusting 28. Great, we can try the storm sails. It was good and the windvane 'Morgs' did a great job. He did the steering much better than either Dinis or myself could. Dinis manage to capture some video clips.

We arrived in Port Hardy late Friday evening. We are staying here for 2 or 3 days. Next stop Bull Harbour.

Starting our trip

The decision the come north first turned out to be great. We are testing all the boat systems and at the same time getting our sea legs.
We had head winds and waves all the way, which is quite tiresome. We had our first gale in Johnstone Strait with gusts of wind of 32 knots. The boat did well. We are getting better everyday and what a great help the 'biltong' was especially the first day. We also noticed in Campbell River that the alternator is not charging the batteries. Our thoughts were that it was the smart regulator that stopped working. After some tests with the voltmeter it showed in perfect condition. After testing the alternator it also showed no problem. In the end it was the alternator belts that were a little on the loose side. After fixing that all is working again.
The ham radio is working beautifully. I am able to send the position report and receiving the weather faxes everyday. Dinis also made several long distant contacts.

Cast off and final preparation

On Saturday 26 June, after a wonderful afternoon with the boys and Gary it was time to cast off the lines and leave our moorage at Shelter Island. This was our home port for the last 10 years.

On Monday morning, after a relaxing weekend the boat was hauled out at Granville Island boatyard for the final survey, some little jobs and bottom paint. On Wednesday morning, with our nerves at end we finally finished the jobs, gone to get our last vaccinations and waited for high tide to put the boat back into the water.

With full diesel and water tanks, all non-perishable provisioning and all gear onboard, the boat weight in at 22000 lbs. It is quite heavy, but is about the weight we anticipated. 

We are currently at anchor in False Creek and this will be home for the next 2 weeks.