Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Shiriri Saga # 24 The Second Time Around.

Gwyn steers past THE CAPE.

We find the Mendocino buoy covered in sea lions, and cross our fingers as we pass the rocky cape . It really is a double cape with the second bump (Punta Gorda) still ahead. The wind increases quickly to thirty-five knots. We have a double reaction as well: it is only thirty-five knots: our sense of what constitutes a storm has been upgraded since our first visit to the cape two weeks ago and, at the same time, we realize that we will never completely shake the dread that a rising wind strength will stir up in our guts; a fear that it may go to hurricane force again!

We sail before the wind that is kicking up a series of steep following waves all covered in white caps but we now know this is child`s play for our stout vessel. When darkness comes, Gwyn flips the switch to turn on the compass light for steering at night and nothing happens! We are determined not to stop for the night again, especially in this nasty cape place so we turn on the radar and use the outline of the coast to guide our course. When it is time for Heather and I to take our watch below ( no more staying awake) we leave a nervous Gwyn steering us on through the night. I look back through the companionway to see her head behind the wheel silhouetted against a background of steep breaking waves. Before her two hour watch is over however, we are past the double cape and motor on through the calm seas in it`s lee. Second time, lucky!

Pt. Reyes, Drakes Bay, San Francisco Harbour.

Two days later we approach Point Reyes, just north of San Francisco, in the dark. We had planned to anchor for the night before this, but an approach to an unfamiliar harbour in the deepening dusk did not appeal to us. Too risky! We have adjusted to the open ocean at last and we now prefer to deal with a night passage close to shipping lanes and a bold headland. Point Reyes has a lighthouse that sends out a powerful beam and it seems to take forever to motor around it in a wide arc before following the shoreline to Drake`s Bay. Our radar is our eyes and after watching a dramatic shoreline of bumps and blips we finally squeeze past the buoy and anchor at two in the morning in a broad quiet bay. Ah, the blessed silence! We have been under power in semi-calm conditions ever since Mendocino and look forward to a quiet sleep for the rest of the night.
Drake`s Bay

We anchor here for two more days and walk the park trails along the cliffs. We see the rugged bluffs and multitudes of jagged pinnacles that gave our radar such an interesting display on the way along the shore in the dark. This is the first natural bit of solid ground we have seen since leaving home and we have had such a stressful time in between. We suck it up as nourishment! From here it is only a short hop to San Francisco and we are soon on our way again!

San Francisco, here we come! The Golden Gate welcomes us to the landfall we have been aiming at for nearly a month. We feel that we have accomplished a Great Thing. We turn left and anchor just off the main channel to Sausalito beside a Canadian Yacht, Fairwyn, that we last met in Eureka. We are about to experience the pleasures of making an ever widening circle of sailing friends who are headed south just like us. Not only that but we now have an adventure story to dine out on!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Shiriri Saga # 23 Repairs.

Painting the final touches on Miss. Chickpea.

Sometime in the afternoon I awake with a question buzzing in my mind. Just as we stepped below in the dawn amid the onlookers on the dock, I had heard one say, " Too bad about the bow. She must have been a beautiful boat once." What did he mean?

I clamber on deck to find a foggy day and to see our survival suits draped across the main boom like three dead bodies. I step onto the dock and walk toward the bow. Then I understand the comment: the bow has been chewed up as though some great monster has been using Shiriri as a bone. The true culprit dangles from the bow; our Bruce anchor has broken loose sometime in the night and crashed repeatedly against the metal band that comes part way up the bow ("Clang, clang!") and when it missed that, had bitten into the stem piece and hull planks. ("Thump, thump!") Now I knew how close we had come to having a hole smashed through the hull and having a big jet of water hosing into the boat as we were towed through the turbulent waves. We would have gone down like a stone, in the dark. Only the iron band and the two-inch thick wooden planks have saved us. A modern fiberglass boat would not have survived.

Heather and Gwyn carry load after load of wet clothes up to the Laundromat and we begin to clean up the inside of the cabins. Several glass jars of fruit have smashed on the floorboards in the galley, but considering the turmoil, we have come through quite well. I survey the damage on deck and once again, apart from the bow, which I`ve already figured out how to repair, there is no major structural damage. Our inflatable, Rosie, is torn past repair. She had acted as a drogue, still wrapped around the propeller, and kept us steering straight behind the cutter. We need a new and improved steering quadrant made up by the local machine shop and some welding done to various bits and pieces, and that`s it. As a Coast Guardsman said later, "That is one tough boat."After a while, I haul out my tools and we develop a plan that will eventually take us two weeks of hard work at dockside to complete. We begin to notice the friendly helpful people who live at the Marina and know we will manage just fine. We are lucky that our precious vessel needs our help; we have no time to consider calling it quits and going home.

Repairing the bow, one piece at a time.

Our figurehead has lost Miss Chickpea from her arms.( She lost her head while we were losing ours.) and despite the press of work, I carve a new chicken head and fasten it on; this time strengthened with a stainless steel pin. The fishermen on our dock understand, because they are aware of the importance of luck and another good set of eyes at sea. They also tell us how to get safely around Cape Mendocino on our second attempt. "Stick close to shore inside the reefs," they say, "duck around the red buoy and back in behind the cape. The further out you are, the bigger circle you have to make, and the longer you are out there." And that`s a bad thing; as we have learned.

That "bad thing" visits me with nasty dreams for several nights at dockside and then fades away as the needs of the day occupy my thoughts and the necessity for a landfall in San Francisco before the beginning of winter storms on this coast starts to nag at us. The fog finally clears and sunny days allow Gwyn and I to paint our newly repaired bow. It is time to head out over the bar. We thank the Coast Guard again on the VHF as we put to sea.
* Some of the storm photos were courtesy of the Coast Guard who took a vidio of the rescue. These, as well as the ones above were used in Heather`s article in Cruising World Magazine. Dec. 2000.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


The ferry churns out of our island harbour . It is a grey overcast day with a flat layer of cloud from horizon to horizon: it is a June morning and this month can typically produce a lot of days that look like this. We yearn for the days of blue sky and brilliant warm sun: for the vivid colours that enliven the landscape and our own moods. We often look in vain.

Perhaps it is my partial colour blindness that helps me see the beauty in this grey seascape outside the salt speckled windows. The rocky, tree covered hills that hold our bay in the crook of their arms look serious in this light; even the new light green spring foliage is blended with the darker evergreens by the sheen of grey that coats them all. The distant islands are dipped in a restful grey toned blue. The sea`s surface presents an intricate pattern of burnished and ruffed patterns in many tones of dark and light. Even the white smudges of ferry wave crests are only white in relation to the tones they dance upon.

A grey day is so common here on this coast, often streaked with rain or raked by wind, often carrying a damp penetrating cold, that it is our familiar companion. Our moods are so wrapped in grey we cannot tell if the sky influences us or if we ourselves cast this pall upon the land.

When those brilliant days do eventually swing by, we turn our faces to the sun like plants determined to suck up every bit of light. We bask in colour for awhile, then adjust to the dappled light of cloud and sun, the drama of windswept skies and finally pull the blanket of grey back up again. I turn back to my familiar tones as to a work Monday after a weekend of relaxation: partly reluctantly, but also with a sense that I am back to the real, serious, subtle things of life: shades of grey.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Shiriri Saga # 22 Mendocino.

In Difficulties.
We are back in enormous waves and rising winds. It is evening, and we are thirty miles south-west of Cape Mendocino. Should we continue and try to sail out of it, or heave-to as we usually do? On such seemingly minor points, can big outcomes hang. The crew opts to do the usual thing and suggests it is also time to try out the storm parachute sea anchor. It takes some trouble to deploy off the weather bow, but finally it pulls our bow to face the waves: just as advertized!

Cape Mendocino. Northern California. X marks the spot.
Suddenly the motion is horrendous, like being anchored in an enormous surf line of breaking waves. In thirty foot waves with a six second interval, we are being lifted above the height of a three story house and back to the basement every six seconds as the sea anchor holds us firmly in this wild spot on the seas surface. The latest train of large ocean swells has touched ground far below amid the rocky canyons of the San Andreas Fault and begun to boil at the surface. Our stern tosses high in the air as our bow disappears into the face of a wave. We have gone from situation normal to overload in minutes.

We have been towing our Inflatable, Rosie, all the way down the coast with no problems, but now it is tucking itself under the stern and taking a thumping from the transom. I pull it alongside out of trouble. Shiriri turns slightly so the bar tight line to the sea anchor is now lead under the bowsprit and starts to thump and wear on the bob stay. I start the engine to motor ahead and bring the line back on the port side and feel the propellor wrap a stray line from the inflatable around itself. I shut down the engine immediately but too late: our engine cannot be used now until calm conditions will allow me to swim below the stern and unwrap it! We put in a terrible night in the cockpit hanging on and hoping the weather will improve. Amid such powerful forces, things can rapidly spiral out of control.

By morning, the steering quadrant has broken, so now we have no steering. The weather is worse: the wind is gusting to over sixty knots and building the swells quickly into breaking waves. Just when we need all our wits and strength, we are totally exhausted and sea sick. Shiriri is handling the conditions well enough, pitching up and down in the wicked seas but the crew is not! We decide to send a pan pan distress message to the US coast guard so they will know we are out here and struggling but not yet in a may day situation. Half an hour later, a helicopter hovers overhead appraising the situation and an oh- so-welcome friendly voice offers us a tow to harbour. We accept.

The Rescue.

In accepting the proffered tow by the Coast Guard we have placed ourselves in other`s hands and can not now decide on a course of action of our own - like cutting ourselves loose from the sea anchor and drifting past the cape. We have elected to wait for rescue: we are sick, sleep deprived and far too passive for our own good. We do not eat or drink or try to keep up our spirits: just loll in the cockpit for the whole day as the wind now blows at hurricane strength and the brilliant blue sea heaves and writhes; all fringed in white foam. Even in the circumstances, we love it`s impersonal beauty under a cloudless sky. This is no winter storm, just the high pressure cell in the Pacific strengthening and spinning out winds that are increasing near the coast as they meet the low pressure air that rises over the warm land. These winds are then doubled in force again as they are squeezed into a narrow path as they curve by Cape Mendocino.

The Coast Guard sends out an aircraft to keep an eye on us and it checks in on a regular schedule over the VHF radio. We must be quite a site bouncing around in the foam. They tell us that the cutter is coming from way up the coast, that it has just finished towing another yacht in from one hundred miles out and it will not arrive until evening. What a long sleepless day we have ahead!

Shiriri suddenly turns sideways to the waves and heels far over so that one side is high in the air and the other buried in the waves. Our sea anchor line has finally chaffed through and we are drifting sideways with wind and sea. At first we think this means the boat will tip over but after awhile we find that things are quieter. We no longer pitch violently, but are lifted bodily sideways on the crest of a wave, the slack bilges of our traditional schooner form a gentle curve on which to slide. Water is forced under the keel and forms a large patch of turbulent eddies that catch and neutralize the jets of breaking water and foam that rush down the wave faces toward us. After half a hour we know that we are safe, if still in a precarious position.

The four engine C-140 Hercules starts to circle with a wing tip pointed toward us and over the waves bounces a toy sized cutter; sometimes perched on a wave crest and at others hidden in the troughs. Only as it comes near can we see it is eighty feet long and it is only the size of the waves that dwarf it. At first they tell us to prepare to jump into the water and be rescued by the rescue helicopter that now hovers nearby. What? We were waiting for a tow! We point out that we are not sinking and that the heel is from wind pressure on masts and hull and is not due to being half full of water. To abandon a floating boat for these rough seas seems crazy to us! We loose our apathy, and begin to draw on the next level of adrenaline.

"Ok," they say, " One try to take you in tow."They throw a heaving line which falls neatly across our bow and I lunge for it and start hauling it in to retrieve the heavy tow line attached to the other end. It is so close to the boat and then becomes too heavy! Heather beside me, who has been sliding back and forth on the high side deck relaying messages to me from Gwyn on the VHF radio shouts "Give me the end of that!"and together we haul it aboard and I slip the end over the bitts at the bow. We are connected to our rescue vessel and after some more attempts to retrieve a drogue during which I nearly go overboard we are under tow back through the waves, north bound around Mendocino again, and en route through the night to the northern California port of Eureka.

I have just had a peak life experience out there on the bow, half smothered in cold sea water and retching my guts out, as we dealt with the details of our rescue. Even as I was aware of the helicopter hovering beside me, the cutter sometimes below and seconds later looking down on me, of the sting of spray in my face, part of me was a calm observer who said, " At last you are in the company of the people you have read about all your life. Here is Joshua Slocum. Here are Miles and Beryl Smeeton". I was at last facing terrific adversity and able to draw on a fund of resolve that only this kind of experience could bring forth.

The Long tow.
Shiriri is moving to windward at what seems a terrific pace.( Six knots) Ahead, pulling on the tow line, the Coast Guard cutter cuts through the top of a big wave and seconds later our boat tosses her bow high on the same crest, tries to lunge across to the next crest, fails, and plunges her bow deep in the face of the next wave. We smash it aside in a spray that reaches to the tops of our masts and back to where Heather and I lie miserably in the cockpit. And then again, and again! Gwyn is just below us in the after cabin in her berth, close to the VHF radio where she can communicate with the cutter each hour. Our trip to Eureka, in Humboldt Bay, has begun, and it seems that our greatest challenge of the night will simply be to hang on, stay awake for another twelve hours, and keep from dying from exposure.

After a few interminable hours of wildly pitching progress, our main mast pulls the running back stay fittings out of the deck and, in jerking back and forth, chews up the wedges that keep the mast firmly held in the deck. We are about to loose our mast, and it will fall on us! I talk to the cutter who does not want to stop or slow down ( they wish to reach the harbour entrance at slack water when the seas will be calmest) and beg them to stop for ten minutes. When they do, I balance in the dark catching lethal swinging blocks attached to the end of wire rope stays and tie them down as best I can. I wedge more wood around the mast and then off we go again. In the interval though, we notice that the seas have gone down considerably: we are out of the maelstrom.

I am so cold! We cling to each other for warmth, but my survival suit was soaked back there on the bow several hours ago and the adrenaline has settled back to simply keeping me awake. The sleeping bags we drape over us are soaked almost immediately by the cold spray. When Heather asks me what that metallic thumping sound is, I can barely think and imagine it may be coming from the propellor shaft below the cockpit; Clang, clang, thump, thump! We only discover the true cause after our arrival, and of all that has happened, this one could have killed us very quickly as we were towed along in the dark.

We finally cross the calm bar into Humboldt Bay and are handed over to a smaller cutter that lashes itself alongside and takes us to a marina. While Gwyn takes the crew on a tour of inspection of Shiriri to be sure we have all our required safety gear, Heather and I are taken below in the cutter and, after having our survival suits stripped off, we are toasted under heat lamps. Soon we are able to thank our most recent batch of rescuers and stagger up the dock to long hot showers and a good breakfast of bacon, eggs and pancakes.

We are so pleased to be alive and on land again. We return to our tattered boat in the dawn past a group of onlookers ("What has the cutter caught this time?") and step down into our messy cabin, onto our berths and fall fast asleep! We have been awake for forty -eight hours.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Shiriri Saga # 21. The Big Ocean.

The voyage down the coast.

The waves are enormous! Off Cape Flattery the wind picks up from the usual North-West quadrant and we begin a roller coaster ride on enormous swells that lift us high in the air. We then steer down the slope with our hearts in our mouths. In the trough, the wind goes light, and then the wave slides under us and we are back on the windy crest once more. These are not wind waves, but swells that have travelled many hundreds of miles from a storm in mid North Pacific and are now feeling the shoaling off the cape which serves to make them shorter from crest to crest and higher ( at least 20` high). We have cut the corner too close as we pass the cape.

We have read in advance about this passage down the coast and two theories have emerged: stick close to land and dodge into a harbour when the weather gets worse or you need a rest, or go 100 to 200 miles out, away from shoal water and capes and treat it as an offshore passage. We choose to sail only 30 miles off shore and keep our options open. Partly, we are afraid of deep water but also concerned that the available harbours along this coast are difficult to get in and out of because of big waves and shoal, sandy shores. Like most sailors from the Pacific North-West with it`s Inside Passage, we are unaccustomed to open ocean sailing and this trip down the coast is our first major introduction to it. Unfortunately, these West Coast waters are rated the fifth most dangerous in the world, so if we hit a rough patch we will have a very steep learning curve. We have chosen a middle path, and that will be a problem for us up ahead.

Once well past the cape and in deeper water, the waves settle down to only eight feet or so. - still difficult for us, as Shiriri wants to slew around on each wave crest and she requires a careful hand on the wheel. We will all learn eventually to make a slight correction just before she tries to turn, but in the meantime the crew works hard to maintain course.

It is cold out here so we don our survival suits for the duration of the voyage and settle in to steering due south so we will slowly edge away from the south-east trending coast of North America. Night presents another problem. Because the waves are catching us at an angle on our quarter and making steering difficult, Gwyn and Heather cannot manage it in the dark. We must all take our turns on watch so others can sleep ( there is no more anchoring for the night,) and so we decide on another compromise: we will stop the boat for the night by heaving-to ( reducing sail and swinging the boat around so she just gently rests close to the wind and is more or less stopped.) The helm is lashed and the person on deck only has to watch for other boats. We are tired and desperately need our sleep but by stopping at night we have chosen to double the length of time we will be out here in these turbulent conditions. So, the more likely the weather will be to change and the more exhausted we will become. We all feel sickly from the motion and the standard anti-nausea pills leave us sleepy. This is not fun!

Over the next few days we sail past the coasts of Washington and Oregon states and actually pass the notorious Cape Blanco in a calm, under power. We have yet to learn not to tempt the Gods however, and start talking about San Francisco and getting out of our survival suits. Only one more big bulge in the coastline to negociate: Cape Mendocino!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Shiriri Saga # 20. Departure. The Big Leap into the Big Pond.

Cape Flattery.

We have chosen to make our departure for our Pacific voyage from Victoria`s Inner Harbour on the Labour Day weekend( Sept. 7) when there is a Wooden Boat Festival at the docks. Just backing Shiriri into a slim space between highly polished vintage yachts is stressful and the noise and crowds of curious onlookers is not the best for last minute jobs and especially our goodbyes to friends and family. Our pride and joy, Shiriri, that now has all her paint and cetol varnish in multiple layers to resist salt spray and tropical sun is splendid and practical in our eyes but does not measure up to the floating varnish advertisements that surround her. During our isolated up-coast summer we forgot that the work-boat standard we had struggled so hard to achieve would look, well, .... practical!

Finally the hardest goodbye for me is over ( saying goodbye to my frail old mom), we have topped up our fuel tanks and jerry cans with diesel and Heather, Gwyn and I motor out of harbour and turn right toward the place where Juan de Fuca Strait becomes the open Pacific Ocean. We motor out past Race Rocks lighthouse and start saying goodbyes to each familiar piece of landscape we pass. We say hello to a Canadian Navy ship in the strait that Anne is serving on, and imagine that future date when Gwyn and Anne will change places in San Diego. There is no fog, no head winds, no wind at all in fact and after several hours we anchor for the night at Port Renfrew.

We understand why so many voyages never successfully get launched. We have had so many impediments ourselves lasting over several years and now we are sharing our berths with the most difficult companion of all - fear! There is something about leaving the familiar shore that claws at the guts. Nevertheless, the next morning we hoist sail to a fresh breeze and angle across the entrance of Juan de Fuca for Cape Flattery and the beginning of our first passage down the coast to San Francisco. Shiriri is southward bound at last.

Saturday, June 7, 2008


Radiating ripples break the mirror surface of the pond. Either something has fallen from above, or reached up from below: it gives a dynamic quality to an otherwise quiet and predictable scene. I`m reminded of the Haida Indian explanation of mankinds place in the order of things. There are beings that know only the hidden world beneath the surface - fish, for example. Then there are those who experience reality on the surface membrane of water and land - humans, among others. There are the fowls of the air who know the extacy of the upper regions. Only a few of these can dive below, swim and walk on the surface and fly over all of creation. Only these can have a complete understanding of the nature of reality: the rest of us can have only a partial perspective.

Of course its not that clear anymore. Humans can now dive into the ocean depths, travel quickly to the ends of the earth, and fly so high that they can reach the moon. If the Haida story were strictly about the tangible reality of the world we might be forgiven for placing it in the category of outmoded historical myth. The myth, though, remains current because it is using the metaphor of three world levels to point beyond our limited human perspective to the intangible aspects of spirit reality - realms visited by shaman concerned with maintaining a proper relationship between humans and the underlying and overarching spirit of the visible world.

The creative process too is a kind of interactive metaphor that my human mind uses to process information and make the leap from specific knowledge to a larger understanding. I imagine how it all began: two remote ancestors walk down a wooded trail and catch a blur of shape stretched out in the speckled light and shadowed foliage above them. Their imaginations fill in the missing information.... and see the big hungry cat just about to pounce. They turn, link hands, and run. They survived, that`s why they are our ancestors; and they passed that ability to imagine a larger reality beyond representative parts on to their descendants and they, over time, refined it into cave paintings. These people of maybe thirty thousand years ago saw the partial shapes in the rocky surfaces of caves and refined them into images that captured the forms of the big animals they hunted and who hunted them. The image captures the essence of the real thing; is a visual metaphor. Behind the specific animal, is a master pattern and, by extension, behind all reality is a master pattern. The cave painters can now interact imaginatively, create story, dance and song: enter into the unified mind of all their fellow creatures.

This concept of metaphor is a useful tool for me to understand how I interact with the world. I draw a ripple into a quiet pond scene because the image calls for it; the ripple sets my mind off into deeper thoughts as though it turns a key in my mind. The drawing itself is a metaphor - the reflected tree, the ripple, the water lilies, all say, "This drawing is the essence of ever changing reality; focused and suspended out of time so you can experience it." The individual image represents the greater whole.

I was recently re- reading the old Anglo Saxon epic Beowulf and was reminded of the poetic device called a kenning: a metaphorical devise that lifts the account of brave hero and nasty monsters past a blood and guts rendition to a wider picture of mankind, fate and courage. Last night I watched a movie based on the mythic story of Tristan and Isolde. It was populated with lots of handsome young men and women loving and killing to give an audience a vicarious thrill. I was still touched by the almost obliterated deeper story that shone through: a metaphor that spoke of deep patterns of love, loyalty and the workings of fate. These old stories carry metaphorical thinking forward into the present day.

The picture on the cave wall is the spirit, the master pattern, of the flesh and blood representative. The kenning that calls the ocean " the whales way" creates linking metaphors that point to a larger appreciation of reality. Tristan and Isolde, that Arthurian legend, reaches into our own emotions: we feel the emotion and are the momentary flesh and blood representatives of a master pattern and metaphor is our link to it. Those ripples that break the perfect pond reflection of the overhanging tree and sky are a metaphor that opens the surface of reality: I can use them to open my mind to understand deeper patterns. Those spreading waves are the tones of a bell that focuses my thoughts and guides my pencil .

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Shiriri Saga # 19The Octopus Islands.

June 16 The Octopus Islands.
We have carefully edged into a small bay in the Octopus Islands north of the Strait of Georgia. They are amidst the maze of islands and channels that lead toward the north end of Vancouver Island and the open Pacific. The tidal currents sweep up and down these channels so rapidly that we must time our arrival at the narrowest parts so as to catch the few minutes of calm at the high and low points of the tide. We have passed through Surge Narrows at close to slack and even so Shiriri rolled and twisted in the whirling eddies. Now we are anchored and stern tied to the land and can settle down to get the last of the brightwork stripped and refinished. We work in the mornings, and wander off to explore in our dinghy, Edith, in the afternoons.

The weather is cool and damp as it often is in June on the coast so we get a lot of old finish stripped and not much revarnished but we also have the bay pretty much to ourselves. A speed boat zips past the narrow entrance and then turns and comes in for a closer look at Shiriri, some interesting sailboats come in and anchor for the night but the summer rush has yet to start.

One day we visit one of the small islets in the group and just laze away the afternoon poking around and sketching: a thing we must make ourselves do as we are so used to seriously working on all our boat projects. Even in this lovely setting far from the cares of the world, we have a mental clock ticking down to an offshore departure and there is so much to do!

Quadra Island is very large and this end is wild and unpopulated. We make a longer expedition one day to the head of a large bay (Waiatt Bay) to the south of us. The chart shows a short valley that connects the head of this bay with another on the other side of the island. A chance to go for a hike ashore!
Some old ruins of a logging camp troll their rotting piles and steel cables out for innocent anchors as we motor past in Edith and if we had paused to look on landing at the forested head of the bay I`m sure we would have found indications of an old Indian village. This coast is more solitary now than ever with the decline in logging and fishing: and any signs of the past disappear so rapidly under the lush undergrowth.

We have a lovely hike amid the red cedar trees that keep the undergrowth in check and come out at last at the bay on the other side. Way out in this bay another sailboat lies at anchor and it`s crew are exploring the far shore in kayaks. We walk a little farther and then find a large pile of very fresh manure in the middle of the trail. "Probably bear" I say, ..... "Or wolf?" We retrace our steps in leaps and soon are back with Edith, pushing off quickly and heading back to those suddenly all important boat projects.