Hunter Bay on Lopez

Monday August 12 at anchor. We motored from Blakely Island Marina to Hunter Bay a short 10 nm day on calm seas, no wind and sunny skies. Departure music was Theme from Ghost Busters! Writing a blog seems to take more time than there is time or then wrestling with internet, roaming on and off and what does my cell contract say about Canada. From download to upload and did that text get through. But here we are free if the news for a short time enjoying the lap of the water on the shores seemingly in the wild or shall I say less densely populated. Ann and I have been to Sidney on Vancouver Island visiting our good friends Brian and Louise on Brentwood Bay, cleared customs back in Roche Harbor and then to Deer Harbor, Blind Bay on Shaw Island and then Blakely, a privately owned island. Last we left off it was Sucia Island.

Departure music has been Au Canada, which I like the closing sentiment “we stand on guard for thee.” I must admit feeling in a better situation safety wise than in the States. I thought about that when we attended an outdoor concert at the amphitheater at Butschart Gardens, lovely evening of trio music Rose Cousins from Prince Edward Island.

Other departure music Overture from Tannhauser by Wagner. From Shaw it was The Entrance of the Queen of Sheba from Solomon by Handel. The music is always inspiring like music in movies to fill out the emotional spectrum of the senses and emotions.

I have a variety of pictures to share and will hopefully have more time to write about voyage 3. We are blessed to have this time aboard Kestrel for Ann and I to explore, be on an adventure, and meet other sojourner.s. We cross Rosario Strait tomorrow and at slack go through Deception Pass at 0900. Navigation, charts, tides and currents plus weather are every day on the boating check list. I take after my son Michael who was the Navigation Officer aboard a Navy guided missile cruiser.

Kestrel out

Fair Winds

Gary and Ann with Ensign Wilson

Aboard SV Kestrel

San Juan Islands

Sucia Island

From DeerHarbor we motored between Orcas and Waldron Islands to Sucia 2.5 miles north of Orcas. Our departure music was Mozart’s Symphony 39, 4th movement. Sucia is part of an archipelago of 10 islands and its Spanish name means dirty or foul. Foul as in reefs, rocks and basically dangerous areas not to navigate as also in foul weather. About 600 acres Sucia has a number of coves suitable for anchoring or tying up to State park mooring balls. We entered Shallow Bay via two narrowly placed channel buoy markers that guided us through the reef on the west end of the iskand. We were ahead of a forecasted storm on a busy boating weekend and tied fast to the last of 8 mooring balls. 😊 Finally we had begged off from the sailing life of secure marine slips with conveniences and were entirely self sufficient for our needs. Going ashore by rowing our dinghy connected us to the land. Amongst the beauty of the small bay surrounded by fir, cedar and arbutus trees we watched eagles and blue herons on their fishing escapades as well the approach of ominous clouds.

The rain, wind and the few waves that managed their way over the protection of the reef rocked us to sleep. Kestrel was in the lee of the south wind. With weather we decided to stay three nights. Each day we hiked the trails that led us to other anchorages and flotillas of other boats, campers and kayakers.

Some campers cane in by small hired taxi type boats with their gear and camped. Kayakers came across the 2.5 mile water with camping gear. Amazing the number of kayakers we encounter in open seas. Over wine and pasta it was easy and empowering for Ann and I to be far from the grim news, internet of the states. For a time we could breathe into the soul and find the richness of earth and the adventure of new surroundings. Like the Eagle we were free to enjoy the island as well its serenity.

Before leaving beautiful Sucia Island, not so dirty, I raised Canada’s maple leaf national flag on the mast ready to set sail for Bedwell Harbor on South Pender Island.

Ensign Wilson enjoyed the dinghy rides ashore, long walks. On board he was responsible for security watch but generally fell asleep. He was a favorite of those folks we encountered on the beaches and trails.

Below an unknown young explorer on his skiff capturing on film a blue heron fishing off the reef in the sunset. It’s comforting to see this vision of the future.

Shalom friends – may you have fair winds.

Gary, Ann and Ensign Wilson aboard SV Kestrel our Dana 24 on voyage 3 in the San Juan Islands.

Fog in the Straits

From Port Townsend

Departed 0820 with the last of the ebb tide and encountered heavy fog in the Straits. Relied on AIS and chartplotter and a number of VHF radio exchanges re position and headings with other boats. A little daunting at first but after awhile realized how well the electronics and my voyage planning was going. The incoming flood tide pushed us North and through Cattle Pass where we encountered strong rip tides. Kestrel did very well. At times we got up to 8 knots. Decided to bypass Friday Harbor and went to Deer Harbor. Total time about 6 hours all on power. Ann did well as did Wilson. Kestrel Log Book

You can see the difference fog vs sunny skies.

Ann and I enjoyed the rest of the voyage into the San Juan’s and arrival Deer Harbor where we explored local walking paths and enjoyed the company of fellow boaters. Our departure music from Port Townsend was strangely Norwegian Wood aka “this bird has flown”. Does any one understand the story behind the lyrics? I’ll have to check it out on google. I don’t recall Google growing up. Mom bought about 100 pounds of encyclopedia Britannica when I was in middle school. Long since deep sixed.

We are off to Sucia Island the farthest north of the San Juan’s to anchor and explore hopefully no fog or gales. All for now.

Kestrel Out

Gary, Ann and Ensign Wilson

SV Kestrel

In the San Juans July 31

Voyage 3 Port Townsend

July 28, 2019

Motor/Sailed from Olympia a week ago putting into Gig Harbor, Eagle Harbor, Poulsbo and Ludlow. At 5.5 knots long distances are not within reach. So here we are in Port Townsend, Ann and I and Ensign Wilson preparing to cross the Straits of San Juan de Fuca for Friday Harbor. Tomorrow Monday 29th we have a weather window for early morning. So Voyage 3 really begins from here for our third season which will include a stop or two in Canada.

Dorian Brebeck, Ann’s son-in-law, crewed for me only the first week and Ann joined here in Port Townsend.

My grandfather, born in SF in 1895, wow that’s a long time ago, said that “once there were wooden ships and iron men and today iron ships and wooden men”. Port Townsend, a wooden boat Mecca, defies that statement. Walking around the working waterfront we saw wooden hulls in good repair and many under repair. It takes a lot of experience and strength to work in these yards.

In the shipyard under heavy repair is the boat Western Flyer which John Steinbeck went on with his wife Carol and biologist Doc Ricketts sailing from Monterey to the Sea of Cortez in 1940. It is a public funded effort. See pic below.

Our Departure music to date:

Fanfare for the Common Man by Copland in memory of my Brother Don.

Music from Apollo 13 movie in honor of our astronauts’ missions and the landing on the moon. I was in the Navy on that historic day when Neil Armstrong took the first step on the moon and as reported by Walter Cronkite echoing Neil’s first words.

Buckaroo Holiday by Copland

Me and Bobby McGee by Janis Joplin in support of Raeanne Phillips whose home burned down.

Wish you were here by the band Pink Floyd.

Kestrel out.

Gary Lindstrom

Skipper SV Kestrel, Dana 24 hull 345, Olympia WA

2019 voyage

Preparing Kestrel to sail tomorrow for Gig Harbor and points north on our way from Olympia WA to Sidney BC. Fair weather forecast for the next two days.

High tide at 0840 Sunday will easily make Tacoma Narrows just before slack and then to Gig. Excited to be on the water for the summer sailing adventure.

Leonard Bernstein

In a departure from sailing Kestrel I am celebrating Bernstein on his 100th birthday.

Departure music would have been his Symphonic Dances from Westside Story and as the pianist for Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue with the New York Philharmonic.

Re Bernstein I’ve always loved his persona in the music world and his gift of classical  music during his now famous Children’s concerts which I was a beneficiary.  In later life I had the privilege to meet him, shake his hand and speak with him when he addressed the Foreign Correspondents Club while I was a resident in Tokyo.  Tucked between his fingers was the well familiar cigarette.  I’ve read some about his life and the word complex is fitting.   Having watched him conduct, unfortunately not in a concert hall,  I’m not sure I could have followed him but that’s my level of play I guess.  It would be interesting to know the reaction of say a NY Phil violinist of his time about that question.  However it was the glowing acclamations of his music, energy and emotion which obviously went far far beyond the physical motions and stick waving on the podium.

I am forever thankful to Leonard for his musical gifts to so many. Bravo Bravo!!!