Mar and Gar's Adventures

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Potty Break (Broke)

Poor Garry.  He worked for 8 hours yesterday and was finally able to get the main head working – with help and advice from Simon and Bill.  The ultimate problem was low batteries so things didn’t get pumped all the way through the accumulator tank and so things just kept accumulating until everything stopped.  By 5:30 that night we were once again functional!  Whew!!

We had a great night of crab dip appetizers and other gourmet treats on the Sandpiper.  Mickey and Maureena from Mom’s Toy stopped by later to say hi.  They have been in Sullivan Bay a few days already and head elsewhere tomorrow, too.

We are spending one more day here at Sullivan Bay and the Bryants are hanging with us so we can do some more work on the boat.   One of the things was getting head #2 operational again.   Bill was able to do that in a short time with a coat hanger.

I have been laundry and more laundry – especially after the messy work done yesterday.

It is an absolutely gorgeous day again up here.  I enjoyed my coffee and some computer time this morning as a large group of dolphins went swimming by.

Tomorrow we are heading out and will have some cell phone and texting.  Haven’t had that in awhile!  Then on to Pt. Hardy and BullHarbor for some fishing


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Bad Luck Year 2013

We now officially are cursing all the bad luck this year on the year 2013 since it ends in 13.  In addition to all the issues I have already shared with you, there is much more to add.

  1. Garry loses his lucky fishing hat.  The one he got in Mexico and cut holes into to keep cool.
  2. The brand new crab pot was stolen or cut lose by commercial crabbers in Claydon Bay after only a couple hours in the water.  (Simon and Bill think it just came unclipped.)  One huge large crab was caught before this happened, thank goodness.
  3. House batteries keep going dead so a full day used to change out big battery charger.  Probably a bad battery, not the charger.  Day wasted.
  4. Main head inoperable several times due to Vacuflush pump malfunction.  Must use back up electric head.  Real soon!
  5. Back up electric head seems plugged.  Must use head on someone else’s boat if things don’t improve soon!
  6. Diesel heat continues to malfunction from time to time.
  7. Gar uses Bill’s tender.  Did not know one engine died.  Crashed into Bill’s big boat.  Bent the railing and broke the windshield on the tender.  It is now super glued back together.  Bill a good sport.
  8. Simon goes to shore to tie shore line.  Drops line.  Tries again. Gets line caught in prop.   Line too short.  Jumps in water up to waste to wade to shore to try again.  Water not warm here.

On the plus side (yes, there is a plus side!) the weather has been great and the main things on the boat are working – like the engines!  Prawning has picked up nicely outside of Claydon Bay.  Simon has success crabbing and is sharing ‘pity crab’ with us so we are not too deprived.  And we are having a good time with the Bryants and Josowitzs.

 Demie will go home today from Sullivan Bay and we will spend the night there for a day on a dock and with shore power.  I will try to get a load or two of laundry done.  Tuesday morning Simon and Yvonne will start working their way toward home and we will continue on for awhile longer with Bryants, heading to Pt. Hardy and parts beyond for some fishing before we head the boat home.


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The Bet

No competition here between the guys.   They are constantly egging each other on about who will get the biggest fish (none are big this year, so it is the biggest little fish), the first fish, the most prawns – anything.

 I made a promise to post to the blog about Simon’s big win over Garry.  I believe the bet was who had the most prawns on the first pull at Greenway Sound.  Even though Garry had the most prawns overall for the day, Simon won the first pull bet.  Simon got a whopping eight (8!) prawns.  Really BIG ones if you listen to him.  Garry got a paltry two.   Pretty sad that there was money bet on such a poor showing but it was only a dollar.  Garry scrounged around until he found as many pennies as he could so he could pay off his debt.  Better yet, most of the pennies were Canadian.  Simon did not even mind that.  He just loves having bragging rights over Garry!

 Postscript –  Prawning has picked up some.  Bill Bryant has caught the most but his pot captures the smaller ones that we call salad shrimp.   Garry is in second place but his are much larger and Simon is lagging back but his are really BIG.  Just ask him.


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Bucket List

Cross one thing off my bucket list thanks to Yvonne.  I have always wanted to try to do a New England style clam bake.  You know… when you dig a pit in the sand, have a fire with hot coals and then layer food with seaweed covering it to steam all the food.  You do clams, corn on the cob, potatoes, lobster, etc.   Well, logistically doing the dig in the sand part and the seaweed is pretty hard around here, so Yvonne came up with the next best  thing – a Seafood Boil.  She brought all the ingredients needed from home and all we needed was to harvest the seafood.   It turns out the seafood part is a problem this year.  We have never been in one place when we had all the needed ingredients so we made do a few days ago she put together everything except the crab and it was wonderful!

 The boil consisted of baby potatoes, corn on the cob, Andoullie sausage, clams, and prawns.  In addition we had oysters done on the bbq and fish nuggets – courtesy of Garry and Bill Bryant.  Granddaughter Demie assisted with garnishing the cheesecake dessert that Yvonne also made.

 Yvonne posted a beautiful menu with each course named after a place where had got the particular seafood.  Greenway Sound Seafood Boil, Oysters ala Ramsey, Wahkana Fish Nuggets – it was all very fun and yummy!


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No Incentive

Man, have I been lazy about writing anything at all about the trip this year.  We have stayed at no places since day three of the trip at Powell River and then again at Minstrel Island where there is decent wifi and the only time I get it on my Verizon do-hickey it doesn’t stick around long enough for me to do much posting.   The signal is so bizarre at times that I can sometimes read a few emails and a little Facebook and then it is gone.   My cell phone texting has been better than expected, but very few places we can make phone calls.    But without the incentive of having decent wifi I have not bothered to even try to remember much of the days.   Besides, they are all kind of a blur… boats, water, trees, wind, sun.  Oh, and food.

Since last posting we have been to Minstrel Island 4 nights, Karlukwees (the Indian Village) two nights, Wahkana Bay two nights and I am writing this on day two at Greenway Sound.  It is Thursday the 25th.  We will be here a few more days, then somewhere else a few days, then Sullivan Bay on the 29th (where I will have wifi and will post this, I hope!).

Strange summer so far.  Places we have never missed in years that we have not been to this year are Cordero Lodge, which has been sold , Sydney Bay float in Loughborough Inlet and Pierre’s at Echo Bay.   We may make it to Pierre’s on our way back down but are not even sure of that yet.

This past Saturday our granddaughter, Demie, flew into Lagoon Cove where we picked her up and got her to the Indian Village in time for the annual bonfire and garbage burning and the 2nd Annual Karlukwees Open.  This year we even had impressive trophies for the first 3 places.  The big winner was Bill Bryant, 2nd place again this year was Simon and there was a tie for 3rd place between yours truly and Gord Dayley.

Clamming was great at the Indian Village but no crab again this year.  We did not try prawning at all.

The Bryants were going to Pt. McNeil and Malcolm Island to take Gord back and do some work on friend’s boats so we towed the Animal (their tender) for a couple days and they caught up with us at Greenway Sound.

We are having typical Broughton Islands weather.  Fog and low clouds in the morning and clearing in the afternoons.  It is not cold and we have been able to get some kayaking in which is the extent of our exercise.  We had some heavy drizzle at the Indian Village but basically no rain at all. This is the first year I am glad we brought a lot of food from home!   The fishing has been not so good – no salmon yet-just some bottom fish.  Prawning is bad.   No crab.  Clams and oysters have been the best bet so far.


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You Be The Judge

 

Has Garry been dethroned as King of Prawning?  You be the judge.  Is the criteria quantity or quality?  Number of empty pots or at least something in each pot?  An interesting dilemma.

 First, it must be acknowledged that prawning/shrimping has been much more challenging this year than in previous years.   We have heard the commercial prawners did not have a good season either.

 Ramsey Arm was the first place an attempt was made to start filling the freezer.   Garry’s 4 pots (2 strings with 2 pots on each string) came up with a big fat “zero’.   Simon waited until day 2 to put his pots out (2 single pots) and came home with an impressive 12.  So Simon strikes first.  And they were a nice size 12.   Garry’s second pull netted 97 in one pot and 9 in the other.   So by numbers he is the leader.  The last pulls at Ramsey were sadly lacking.   Garry ended up with 46 and Simon with 9.  Again, Simon’s were larger.

 Leaving Ramsey Arm, the next place we could try prawning was up Loughborough Inlet (pronounced lock-burro).  Garry put two pots out on the first day and netted a paltry 26 but they were a nice size.  Simon again patiently waited a day and put one pot out.   He hauled in an impressive six (6) very large prawns.   When Garry pulled his pots at the same time, one pot was completely empty and the other had three (3) prawns.  Lots of sad faces that night on the boats.

 Pulling the pots the morning we left Loughborough, Simon had another six (6) large prawns and Garry had one empty pot and one pot with only three (3) again.

 Today Gar tried his luck off of Minstrel Island.  Simon again was holding back to see how Garry did.  Well, while pulling the string of 2 pots there was a malfunction/mishandling of the pot puller by one of the two (both are pointing the finger at each other) and both pots were lost.   Not only is that not good news, Garry swears there were lots of prawns in them.

 And what about crabbing?   Last year Garry did not get one single crab, so everything would be better than that, right?  Last year Simon and Yvonne gave us ‘pity crab’ because they were catching lots.    Well, mabe Garry should learn that it helps if you put your pot in the water!

 We anchored one night in ???? bay (Simon says keep it secret!)  and Simon put his crab pot out.  His first check of it there was nothing to see so Garry decided not to bother.  Simon kept his out and got nine (9!) nice male crab.   Garry was out fishing when he pulled his pot so it was time to play a trick on Garry.   Simon asked him to look and see if his crab was legal size and male or female waiting for Garry’s ‘eyes to bug out of his head’ when he saw what he (Simon) got.  His eyes did bug out but we weren’t staying any longer and it was too late to put out the pot so I think there is going to be a challenge coming soon when we get into crabbing spots!  Especially since we got rid of our unlucky pot this winter and have a new one that has doors that glow in the dark.  Wow, I bet that really will entice those crabbies!


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Catch Up Time

I’ve been super lazy about writing anything for the blog since we have had no internet service for a long time.   I am writing this update on Friday morning, the 12th of July and we won’t have internet until Saturday or Sunday when we hope to be at Blind Channel.

We were not able to get into our nice anchorage of Aargh Bay… full again… so we headed to Plan B which is a little anchoring nook just on the outside of the entrance to Pendrell Sound in Waddington Channel.   We spent three night there and did some clamming and exploring by dinghy over at Roscoe Bay.   If we sat out in the middle of the channel outside Roscoe Bay we got cell phone so we called that the ‘phone booth’.   We could drift past the spot of the good signal and would have nothing, then drift back and texts would start popping up.

Gar and Simon continue to McGiver things on our boat.  Since the generator repairs they have rebuilt the battery charger for our dinghy battery and Garry had to completely tear into our inverter.   We started getting error messages every couple hours and it would shut if off.   Without the inverter we have to run the generator to keep the freezers and fridge at temperature so the inverter is very important.  We didn’t know if the batteries that the inverter ran off of were getting hold and not holding a charge or if the inverter was not working right.   Turns out it was the inverter.  It took half a day of work in hot weather but it has been working better than it ever has since he spent the time on it.

We have been trying to stay in touch with the Landes who got weathered in by wind in Nanaimo along with the Keenans.  It took 3 or 4 days of waiting on their end to finally be able to cross the Straits of Georgia.   We were lucky we were able to easily when did it.  You just never know what winds you will get.

We left our little anchorage in Waddington on Monday the 8th.   As we passed the marine park of Walsh Cove there was a lady on the little island doing yoga.  My picture does not do it justice because she was too far away but it was pretty funny to see.  Very strange to see only one boat at Walsh Cove and no boats at Toba Wildernest.  Both places are usually so busy.

We caught dinner on our way into Ramsey Arm.  As we came in to anchor there was a bear on the beach and a logging camp set up that was not there last year.  In the past couple of days we have learned a lot about logging camps.  They are not quite logging yet as they are waiting for a few more things to arrive so there has only been the camp cook, Donna, there – acting as caretaker and stockpiling meals in the freezer for when all the workers arrive.  It has been great getting to talk to Donna.  She was nice enough to give us a tour of the floating camp and explain how this particular camp works and what all she does.   She has been doing camp cook work for about 20 years and is incredibly organized and efficient.  The time we got spend over at the camp has been the highlight of the trip so far.

So, back to today… We woke up this morning to a huge tug and barge that came in late last night to the camp and they are not offloading stuff.   Simon and Yvonne left at 5:30 this morning for early slack at Yaculta and Dent rapids.   We will leave mid-day and catch the 2nd slack because the Landes finally caught up with us yesterday and we want to spend some time with them before we move on.

The weather has been spectacular but we had a few showers yesterday that cleared off quickly.  Hopefully our good luck continues.