Mar and Gar's Adventures

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Blunden, At Last

Change of plans… then change again.  We left Claydon Bay on Sunday, heading for Dickson Island for the night instead of Blunden thinking of some salmon fishing at James Pt.  Before we went in to anchor we decided to go out to the point to make cell phone calls.  The water looked so perfect for Pt. Hardy, so Bill called to see if there was room at the marina but they well totally full, so we switched our plan back to Blunden.  That would take about 10 miles off of our crossing Monday morning.   I have always wanted to see Blunden Harbor but it has never happened.  Could not have been with better guides than Bill & Judy because they have been there many times.

We had a perfect anchoring spot and then Bill & Gar went out around the corner to look for that elusive salmon.  Gar caught a nice Spring (Chinook or King).  After dinner, we got on the Animal (Bryant’s fishing boat) and we went back through the rapids into the back lagoon.  It was so pretty and remote.  Got pretty exciting getting out of the lagoon as the current was against us big time.  We got down to 4.2 feet of water with rushing water all around us.  I was calling out depths while Gar & Judy were on the bow pointing out rocks to Bill.  Quite the ride!

Monday morning we headed to Port Hardy.  There was a little fog in the Queen Charlottes Straits, but not bad.  Made it there in less than 1 ½ hours.  We fueled up at Gordy’s fuel dock and chatted awhile while waiting for our slips to open up at the marina.  Had a nice lunch, did a load of laundry at the Laundromat (good til we get home now) and then headed to Gord and Marilyn’s for dinner and party time.

So now it is Tuesday morning… the morning after a great party, so we are moving a little slow.  OK, a lot slow.   They have a beautiful home overlooking the harbor and down to their fuel dock and the ferry dock.  The yard is decorated with whimsical items and yard art.  Very cleverly done.  We had a fantastic dinner then Marilyn turned up the music and we all started dancing….It might have had something to do with Gord breaking out the Fireball for us.   Anyway, we all danced like idiots until we decided it was time to leave the mess for them to clean up and us to head to the boats and bed.

We are borrowing Gord’s truck so will do some stuff around here today and leave in the morning for Bull Harbor.  At our boat speed it is a couple hours west of here (toward Cape Scott) where we will spend a few nights at anchor or on a dock if the dock is available.  The guys will fish off the little boats a few miles from the harbor.  There is a road on the island from the dock to the other (ocean) side where there is supposed to be a great beach for pictures so Judy and I are hoping to do the hike.

You are now current unless something exciting happens today, but I don’t see that happening.


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Ode To Simon

Whiskey River

Tonight The Bottle Let Me Down

Whiskey, If You Were a Woman

If Tomorrow Never Comes

Help Me Make It Through The Night


What do all these songs have in common with Simon?  A night he wants to forget but is forever in our memories.  Fireball Whiskey, also known as Cinnamon Whiskey became Simon’s undoing.  He claims Bill and Garry did not tell him there was alcohol in it.  When did he ever think he could trust those two?


They guys were pulling their prawn pots.  Simon realized it was going to be one of his best days, so he kept asking for the bottle of Fireball to celebrate. “ More whiskey, more whiskey.  Look at those prawns!”  Not sure if he had more prawns than whiskey, but he killed the bottle.  Yes, Bill & Garry had some too, but Simon had his fair share and it turns out is a light weight when it comes to whiskey.  He made it through appetizers that night before ending up hanging over the side of his boat for a few hours cursing the prawn god… the moaning and muttering was the entertainment for all of us that night.  Fortunately he was hanging over the far side so we didn’t have the visual, just the audio version of his evening.


Where Are The Boats??

Lots of good times since leaving Echo Bay on Tuesday.   We decided to take a chance on docks still being at Greenway Sound and try the prawning there.   The docks are there but not in as good of shape as last year.  The hard winters really take their toll.  Rumors abound about whether you can stay there, but it is not posted No Trespassing.  From what we could clarify, the latest note posted on one of the buildings encourages people to make some type of donation to the owners to help defray their taxes, as they have not been able to sell the place.   Not many boats were there.   The prawning was not as good as last year but they were huge!  Almost scampi size.  We called them lobsters!  Gar’s bait seems to be the hit of the pots but everyone got prawns there.  The other guys did better if their pots were not by Garry’s.  Yvonne’s theory on that is that if Garry’s bait is better, why bother with the other… just go to the gourmet stuff.  Garry is now concerned that someone will try to bribe is bait co-maker for their secret recipe.  (Jim!  Accept no bribes!  We are bringing you prawns home!)


While at Greenway, Bill L., Jan and Judy took a side trip to Sullivan Bay.  Jan had never been there and they had a nice lunch, hit the store and walked all around the floats then came back.


On Friday morning, we said goodbye to Another Bill as they headed south toward home.   The rest of us headed for Claydon Bay.  We were shocked to see not a single boat in the bay.  Well, not quite true.  There were two leaving, then no one else.  Claydon Bay is such a popular anchorage that we really were surprised.  The crabbing is not as good as usual so maybe that is the answer.   Bill and Simon are getting a few crab but Gar has been skunked.  Simon is loving it!  Bill & Garry went salmon fishing at James Point but had no luck.


The weather has been cloudier, but there was no morning fog today and the afternoons clear up pretty well.  Temperatures are pretty comfortable.


From here we think that the plan is that we travel with Bumble Bee to Blunden Harbor on Sunday and then on to Port Hardy (Bill insists it is Port Party!) to get some decent salmon fishing in.  Sandpiper will stay in the Broughtons a little longer before heading south.  After Port Hardy we will start our meandering home, hoping to stop in Sointula and Campbell River to visit friends at each place.  My best guess is that we will leave the Port Hardy area anywhere from next Friday to next Sunday.  Fishing, wind and weather will be the factors.


Another prawning update.  Our usual spot that Todd Hiatt showed us several years ago has been the hot spot.  Simon got his largest haul and I am hoping Garry stops after today’s haul.  I freeze a lot of them but we are eating them almost everyday for appetizers.

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Van Gogh? John Paul Getty Jr?

You be the judge, but I think I am more of a Van Gogh than John Paul Getty Jr.  And it was all my fault.  Knowing that my hair would be driving me crazy after more weeks than usual between cuts, I invested in a very good set of hair scissors and thinning shears.  My hairdresser, Yahow Lam, trained me on some basic trim techniques and stressed over and over how sharp the thinning shears were.  I was very very careful.   I was.   And I still learned that they are sharp.  They are so sharp you don’t feel them cut you until you realize that your ear is dripping blood everywhere.  Fortunately, we had our own Nurse Jan along.  She had already saved Simon’s life on this trip and now she came to my rescue with a superb bandage job after I tried for 45 minutes to get the blood to quit dripping.  I have to say, though, that the haircut turned out great!  The worse part of the whole situation was that I could not get the song, Starry Starry Night, out of my head for three days.

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Echo Bay report

Despite Garry’s disappointing finish in the Karlukwees Open, he bravely soldiered on and put it behind him so we could enjoy our last day at the Indian Villiage.  It turned out to be an off and on rainy one, but I made a huge pot of clam chowed and fried some cockles.  Yvonne had made bread and given us some so that was dinner.   We played a couple rousing games of Rummikube with Simon & Yvonne and called it a day.   We woke up of wind and rain and low low clouds… not quite fog. Gar dressed in an all white one piece suit (waterproof?).  He looked like Mr. Clean gone bad.  And he was wearing his Gorton Fisherman hat.  But he stayed dry and warm while going onshore to untie both our shore lines.

After a couple hour cruise we made it to Echo Bay just behind Bumble Bee and Another Bill.  Bill B and Judy did a halibut fish fry, with Bill L doing fries, Yvonne, Gar and I did oysters, Jan made a dessert and Bill B got Simon a little silly with some drink concoction he made for him.  It was pretty funny.  Simon not drinking is already funny.

Echo Bay was almost completely full.  There were 4 other Sonships like ours but bigger.  People always want to know which ours is and did not know they made one this small.  Gar gave Pierre the lantern and the antenna we had brought for him.   Late last night we went up and admired the lantern’s nice light out by their Pig Roast party room.   The Echo Bay store was really well stocked and arranged really well.  I only needed a couple things, but they had them.   I also got 2 loads of laundry done… almost all towels, so am good with everything for awhile.

The 4 boatloads of us will be heading elsewhere in the Broughtons today but we are not 100% sure the actual route yet.  Another Bill will be heading home around Sunday and the rest of us will be here longer.

I keep forgetting to talk about Gar’s prawn prowess!  He continues outprawning everyone but the count is down from last year.  Everyone has told us even the commercial guys did not do well this year but we got 116 nice ones here yesterday.   Froze them for home.

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Breaking Sports News

The annual Karlukwees Open was held Saturday, July 21st, after a slight rain delay.  The reigning champion, Garry Wamsley,  was clearly off his game, placing third in the field of three.  The clear winner was Marilee Wamsley.  This was the first major career win for Marilee.  She drove straight down the beach and between two posts and into the woods.   Newcomer and rookie Simon Josowitz came in a surprising 2nd place with his first ever attempt with a golf club.  After one mulligan he soundly hit the ball with decent distance and a few hops on the water’s edge.

Former winner Garry had trouble from the beginning. His initial attempts were two complete misses of the ball; one hit that trickled a foot to the right; another miss; and then a hit that sent the ball backwards a few feet.  Finally he hit the ball the right direction but sliced it into the water.  It skipped approximately 20 times before disappearing from site.

The  evening was capped off with a ceremonial garbage burning.

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What Happpened??

Awesome, then shock and disappointment and sadness!  We left Minstrel Island and made a nice leisurely 1.5 hour cruise to Karlukwees… Along the way there was a pod of at least 50 or more dolphins that were feeding, jumping and cruising.  It was really awesome.  I took a video that I need to download and see if I got any of the dolphins in it.  But then we got to Karlukwees, also known by all of us as the Indian Village.   To our amazement and dismay our pilings that we tie off of every year are gone.  Also gone is the mostly sunken barge that we tied our stern lie to.   About 4 or so years ago there were people flown in and walking around the beach when we were there and there was talk of cleaning everything out but we didn’t think too much of it.  Well, it finally happened.  Time moves on.  For all those who ever came to the Indian Village and enjoyed the good times there, be glad you were able to experience that!   Anyway, after our unexpected  surprise we went back a couple of miles to Potts Lagoon and are anchored with a stern line to shore in a nice place.   It was Friday night date night so I did the equivalent of Louie Mike’s Dragon and Phoenix…  sautéed steak bites with garlic, ginger, prawns and with a lemongrass & ginger rice dish.   Tomorrow morning at low tide we will go by dingy over to the Indian Village and try to figure out if we can anchor over there and do our annual garbage burning and the Karlukwees Open.  Gar would hate to move the golf tourney.   Jan & Bill are going to head out  fishing and then go to Sointula on Malcolm Island to catch up with the Bryants and see Logger Dan & Denise’s house.   They will catch up with us at Pierre’s at Echo Bay on Monday.

Update on Bumble Bee (Bryants).  The repair of the generator was a tad bit too much $$$ so they are borrowing a portable generator for a few weeks until they head home so it sounds like they will be joining us at Echo Bay too.

My do hickey wifi thingy ma-bob seems to work here sometimes, so hopefully tonight or tomorrow I can post this…