As soon as we started heading down the Inside Passage from Port Harvey, we both had this strong desire to get back ‘home’ to Cowichan Bay. We weren’t sure why but it might have been the fact that we missed our neighbours on the dock, or the bakery and coffee shop, or the fact that our inverter was starting to make funny noises whenever we were at anchor and seemed to be drawing more power than needed from our batteries. Our boat over the years has had many electrical changes done to it; depending on the owners and what they wanted to have on the boat but the electrical work done on it was not that great and sometimes not done to a safe or professional standard. When we bought the boat, we replaced the electrical panel with something a bit more updated and the electrician found numerous wires that were just cut and left to keep us guessing as their use. This summer we were still pulling wires and cables out that were cut at both ends but just left on the boat. We even came across some life wire, yikes!
We did have some work done on our electrical panel again this summer after we blew an electrical outlet in the galley that killed all the power on the starboard side. The electrician (from Stones Boatyard and Marina) who worked on it found green wire (old copper wire) throughout our system. He replaced as much of the wire as he could but did mention to us that there were still a lot of wires behind the panel that we needed to remove. So now that our inverter is acting up, we were trying to make a decision on whether we wanted to address this by ourselves or hire a professional to deal with it. A decision was made and we decided that we wanted to go with a professional and have them do an electrical audit on our boat system as well. Now we even had more reasons to head back to our home base…..to get our boat in tip-top shape so we can go out sailing again!
We left Gorge Harbour on September 30th and headed through the Strait of Georgia towards Texada Island. It ended up being an uneventful day with us motor-sailing part of our journey and then eventually taking down the jib after a few hours as there was no wind in the strait. We anchored the night in Sturt Bay on Malaspina Strait near the north end of Texada Island (49°45.707’N, 124°34.042’W). The bay and anchorage are smaller than we expected and we ended up being one of three boats in the bay that night.
The following morning we left Sturt Bay and headed down Malaspina Strait towards Jedediah Island hoping for some wind to sail but we ended up sailing for about 25 minutes before bringing down the sails. We now understand why people say that the Inside Passage can be very finicky and you either have or don’t have wind for sailing!
We arrived late evening at our anchorage on Jedediah Island and found a spot to anchor at “Whiterock Bay” (49°30.134’N, 124°12.816’W, distance travelled 32 NM) one of the few good anchorages for this marine park – it was not that hard as there was no one else around. The anchorages on Jedediah Island are scarce, tight and stern tying is generally advised. We weren’t sure how ten boats could fit in Whiterock Bay as shown in Dreamspeaker’s drawing but I guess if you are good at stern-tying, it can be done!
Jedediah Island is a former homestead and sheep farm that was gifted to BC parks in 1995 by Mary and Al Palmer. Many of the old buildings still remain and the sheep have run feral all over the place. In addition, the island has a flock of black feral goats that historians believe are descendants from a flock left by Spanish explorers in the eighteen century. We got to see one of the wild sheep but none of the goats from our boat. ~Sophia & Rob