September 15, 2010

120 days at Sea and 2,840 nautical miles.

Very late on a Monday evening, the Alize' is shuffled through the Ballard Locks and into the stagnant water of Seattle's shipping canal.

Back into the grubby hands of Babylon -

The Alaskan voyage is over.

For an excellent detailed post on the travel distance from Seattle to nearby harbors and marinas, please follow this link.

September 11, 2010

Ryan Miller checks in for the final leg

Springer is out and Miller is in -

Rolling into the homeland - customs clearance at Friday Harbor - the end is in sight.

Sailing into Vancouver Harbour

Vancouver - city of blue tinted glass and high density progressive internationals.

Making way into False Creek under the Burrard Bridge.

The 'China Steel Excellence' waits patiently in English Bay for its next assignment.

Springer returns triumphant to his city.

Desolation Sound

A strong westerly came down Johnstone Strait and into the Northern Desolation Sound Island group.

This made for a fast downwind sail - and then it picked up a bit more and blew out the main sheet tackle.

The blown out traveler and the jury rig main sheet tackle.

Tying up on abandoned pier pilings makes for a bad night sleep.

Broughton Archipelago

After returning from the hardscrabble northern regions of the Inside Passage - tucking into the Broughton Island Group felt a little soft. The 'Soft'en Archipelago. We knew we had returned to the leisurely class when we woke up at an anchorage and found the blue hulled 'Princess' bobbing next to us.

After a slow day moving south through the Broughton's - Steve needed some alone time.

Steve finally realizes why Steinbeck's 'The log from the Sea of Cortez' is so quotable for biologist's power point presentations.

Sullivan Bay is sort of the Disneyland of BC port towns. On par with Skagway in regards to faux- 'old-timey'.
another Steve Springer creation -

The Alize' at rest among the Namu ruins.

Bow riding porpoise

Clearing Cape Caution

Bottleneck Inlet - the most symmetrical anchorage of the entire trip.

Klemtu is a stunning native town just below Finlayson channel. Salmon were jumping, the sun was out and the locals were in rare form.

The Klemtu long house.

The Kitlope Wilderness in Douglas Channel - I heard great things about this stretch of water - but this is as close as we got - the entrance. The Kitlope stone remains unturned.

Miles Inlet remains the nicest way to recover from the exposed crossing of Cape Caution.

Heading south down central British Columbia

Helmsman Springer sails the turn into Seaforth Channel - a partially exposed section of central British Columbia.

Oarsman Steve Springer shows Lake Namu what's what. We caught and ate some incredibly tiny rainbow trout in this lake.

The 'Chilcoot Princess' crashed into the decaying dock at Namu - and then just stuck around in a state of benign neglect.

Dominic and Karolina - a very nice Polish couple we met sailing the Inside Passage.

September 6, 2010

Northern British Columbia: Sailing through Douglas Channel

Paul Nicklen, a photographer for National Geographic was on assignment in Douglas Channel to raise awareness on a recent attempt by Enbridge to transport oil tankers across the ecosystem.

Paul is using Pat Freeny's sailboat, 'Nirvana' as his base of operation while searching for the elusive spirit bear, Ursus americanus kermodei, in the isolated islands of the region.

Apparently this guy takes good pictures because there was a 10 person film crew at the Kitimat dock capturing footage of him loading his gear onto 'Nirvana'.

Father and son filleting a good sized halibut and lingcod.

The Alize' rests at the dock of Bishop Bay Hot Springs.

No shortage of rain in the Great Bear Rainforest.

southbound: Kitimat to Vancouver

Stevan Springer arrived in northern British Columbia in style - with a Cuban pork roast sandwich for the skipper, air delivered in an iced cooler from the kitchen of Paseo in Seattle straight to the desolate aluminum smelting town of Kitimat.