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Main Menu -> SALTS -> 2012 SALTS Summer Programme -> 2012 Trip 4 - Pacific Grace

2012 Trip 4 - Pacific Grace

Log of Pacific Grace

August 9th 2012 @ 11:00
50°43'13.08 N 127°29'9.60 W

Ship's Log:
Trip 4 - Looking forward to welcoming trainees aboard between 1100 hours and 1200 hours on Thursday, August 9, 2012 at the Government Wharf in Port Hardy!

August 10th 2012 @ 15:15
50°29'21.12 N 128°3'39.60 W

Ship's Log:
The Port Hardy dock was loaded to capacity with eager trainees and their well wishers, the wooden floats bucking and swaying like tethered horses as if sensing the urgency of the ships to depart. All hands were accounted for and safety orientations followed in due course. By 1445, under a sunny brisk sky, lines were slipped and the Grace steamed north towards Cape Scott and the open waters beyond. The wind eased in the early evening and we were welcomed to the open ocean by a gentle swell, distant humpbacks and a few curious otters. Everyone felt comfortable as we ran west towards Cape Scott, enjoying a muted sunset, easy company and the slow emergence of stars. Rounding the cape a foresail was shaken out in anticipation of hopefully sailing through the night. The wind held steady and we were able to sail all through the night accompanied by the creaks and strains of rigging and the sibilant hiss of waters racing along the hull. The masts carved dancing arcs across the milky way, who competed valiantly with several brilliant shooting stars to claim the early night sky. By the middle of the night a crescent harvest moon rose brilliantly, illuminating the deck as trainees steered the ship by compass over a glowing phosphorescent sea. It was a pleasant sail, ranging in speed from 2.5-5 knots as we calmly rolled south down the west coast of Vancouver Island. Sunrise broke clear above the shadowed hills and valleys of the island, just in time to aid in the landing of our first salmon. We entered Quatsino Sound around 0900 after sailing for 11 hours or so through the night. The still waters and wooded hills provided a sense of calm and rest after our run as we selected a spot to settle and explore for the afternoon. An adventure was launched to reach a beautiful white sand beach on the outer coast, necessitating a hearty row in the ship's dories and a walk through the soon to be familiar temperate rain forest of the outer coast. All are well and in good spirits.

Anchored, light haze, salmon marinating
August 10th 2012 @ 18:15
50°8'6.00 N 127°41'9.60 W

Ship's Log:
A gradual sunrise above the steep wooded hills of Quatsino Sound brightened the placid waters of our quiet anchorage. Port watch had the anchor aweigh by 0900 and we motored out of the sound towards the open ocean once more. A gentle swell and a drowsy NW breeze drew us seaward. After a mid-morning lesson the breeze had filled and we set a reefed main, fore and jumbo. Sheets were eased and we rolled away at a handsome 8.5 knots. Today's objective was to round the Brooks Penninsula with a favourable forecast. We made quick work of the passage even when temporarily bound by dense fog. We dashed out of the fog and made a top speed of 11.5 knots as we closed on the south side of the penninsula. The wind grew wonderfully warm and tree scented as we passed in the lee of Brooks. The rest of the coast was laid out to the south of and we were the only souls in sight as 3 orcas welcomed us to Checleset Bay. Our rushing sail came to a natural conclusion when the wind died close in  shore and we motored the last half mile to our snug anchorage at Columbia Cove at 1600. The air was still and pleasantly hot, so a refreshing swim stop was called for as a reward for the enthusiastic sail handling of the day.  All in all a wonderful day of sailing on the west coast.

Anchored, sunny, warm
August 12th 2012 @ 18:35
50°7'1.92 N 127°36'28.80 W

Ship's Log:
Silhoutted cedars silently watched as shooting stars blazed overhead, the ship gentle rocking in the calm anchorage. Another warm morning set the stage to accomplish several lessons prior to lunch. After lunch the watches loaded their dories to set off for spectacular Jacobson Beach. After the row their was a plaesant hike through the rain forest, towering cedars and dense salal paved the way to the secluded outer beach. We emerged on to a hot sunny beach, waves breaking beyond the glassy sea. After a beach comb that yielded some asian treasures we set up for a game of ultimate frisbee. The starboardside Brooks Crooks started strong but after a dramatic first mate defection, the unnamed portside clinched the deciding point to rule the day. After the game we set off up a picturesque creek lined by aromatic windfall cedar. The reward of the journey was a beautiful waterfall nestled in a rock grotto that provided a brisk and welcome refreshment from the rigours of the beach. Back aboard by dinner time, anchor was weighed and we have shifted anchorage to the Acous Penninsula. There is a little more swell sneaking in here, just pleasant enough to rock us asleep after a wonderful full day on the Brooks Penninsula.    

Anchored, gentle swell, warm breeze, haze, curious otters

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