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Thread: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

  1. #1
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    Default Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    This might be a nice spot to tell everyone about our wanderings last week in the Broughton Archipelago Marine Provincial Park.

    It's about a 350 mile drive from my house in Seattle to the park. The trip includes a trip up I-5, a conversation with a border crossing guard (really, you built that? really? and you're taking it where? have you done this before?), before boarding the Tsawwassen - Duke Point Ferry that actually just takes you from Vancouver to Nanaimo via the giant Straight of Georgia. From there you head north about 250+ miles on Hwy 19, passing Campbell River, Seymour Narrows, Johnstone Strait, and a handful of very small towns.



    We launched at Alder Bay. This is an RV and camping fishing resort with a boat ramp and dock. It's much much nicer than the redneck hellhole you have to go through in Toquart to get to Barkley Sound. The owners were very nice.



    We launched the next morning and began wandering south on Johnstone Strait. Within an hour or so, two orcas popped up directly in front of us. One squirted right along next to my boat. The other probably passed below.



    Above, an orca bull. This is about five miles north of Robson Bight, an orca protection area.

    After the orcas passed, one popped up and took a look at us.



    And this was our welcome to the Broughtons, where the tidal ranges ran upwards of 15+ feet, the winds were either light or 20+, and the whales put on a nonstop show.

    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    I won't give a day by day rundown of what we did and saw. The other fellows can chime in with their own tales, and of course you can read James' manifesto later. Below, however is the list of places where we camped.

    Alex generally slept on shore. Eric, James, and I mostly slept on our boats, though each of us came ashore either once or twice. I slept once on the beach and once in a tent, as I'd let my boat dry out on the beach on those nights rather than anchoring out.

    1) Mound Island, where we first noticed the difference between the San Juan Island's puny little 9 foot tidal range and the Broughton's 15+ foot tidal range.
    2) Owl Island, lots of bull kelp to deal with while anchoring.
    3) Echo Bay, where we tied up to a very popular yet condemned government dock. We also visited nearby Billy Proctor's Museum. Alex also made us eat ripe salal berries. They were alright, but Alex really likes them.
    4) Insect Island, where anchoring four boats in a 15' tidal range was a cluster and a half. Beautiful island, though.
    5) Booker Lagoon, where I had a tough time finding shallow enough anchoring grounds for Big Food. In the morning, we ran a Class II+ rapid to get out of there. We estimated there was about a 10 foot descent down the rapids. Really interesting.
    6) Crease Island, where we shared the campground with a pair of kayakers who departed at 7 pm and returned just as we were rising at 4 am. It was a supermoon that night and they must have gone off on some sort of crazy adventure.
    7) Blinkhorn Peninsula, where instead of ghost stories we told bear stories. Equally unsettling.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    A few more photos.

    The former front door of a longhouse at Mamalilikula, site of the last potlatch.


    Below, a decaying totem that depicts a bear. It's my understanding that First Nation's bands generally didn't maintain their totems. Instead, they would build them, erect them, then let them return to nature. That's obviously what is happening here, too.



    Boats on the beach near the longhouse.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    A shrine to bored kayakers? Spotted on Owl Island.



    Reefed down and running.


    We ran a long ways that day.


    Echo Bay.


    Billy's Museum.


    Billy's dog. Buster?
    Last edited by Yeadon; 09-16-2014 at 09:54 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Great boardwalk near Echo Bay.


    Low tide in Fife Sound. The high tide mark would be the bottom of the cedar trees. Lots of water moving through the area each day.


    Whale ho! It's a humpback. They were everywhere.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Insect Island.


    The view from Insect Island.


    On the left, an HV16. On the right, a humpback whale.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Three sail & oar boats on a lunch hook.


    False dawn at Blinkhorn Peninsula.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Very nice! Thanks for sharing Tim!

    Jim
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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Fish fry! We caught a lot of fish.



    Booker Lagoon.


    Wrestling with the bull kelp. Oh, the first world problems we must endure on our Sail & Oar forays.


    Alex and Hornpipe, on the run.


    The variety of bird species we saw was amazing.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Tim - thanks for sharing. See my tagline
    David G
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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Glad to see the weather cooperated. Love the photo essay, thanks.

    It boggles me to see how close the orcas and the whales came to you. Wow. Were you intimidated, excited or just 'huh'?
    Gerard>
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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Very nice, is that a dog fish I see?

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    1st preamble available on 'Hey James' thread. Thanks to Tim for posting pics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Denison View Post
    Very nice, is that a dog fish I see?
    Probably. As a kid we called them "bullheads." That might be a name that my brother made up, though. We'd catch them under the docks with hand jigs. We'd catch the first with a green grape, then we'd chop that one up to use as bait to catch more. Good childhood memory, actually.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    I have no idea what some of those fish are called. We mostly called them "dinner" though. Or sometimes "lunch".

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Excellent Tim!

    Makes a guy want to build a sail and oar boat.

    At least the bull kelp helps keep the boats in one spot.

    (until high tide at least)

    "Simple minds discuss people, Average minds discuss things, and Great minds discuss ideas".

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    I see some rockfish and flounder.

    Did anyone bring a folding crab pot?
    "Simple minds discuss people, Average minds discuss things, and Great minds discuss ideas".

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Very nice... reminds me of the 3 months I spent on Cortes Island. It was winter then and wet and chilly. Looks a little chilly for you folks too.
    Steve Lewis
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    Quote Originally Posted by BrianW View Post
    I see some rockfish and flounder. Did anyone bring a folding crab pot?
    Two pots. Multiple crab. Dungeness and rock. This was a fresh food trip.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Your sailing grounds are beautiful. I'm so delighted every time one of you guys shares pictures. Looking at these images, it makes me think that your area must have had a profound effect on your outlook regarding boating, helping to shape the whole Sail & Oar phenomenon. I pretty routinely find myself amidst a pod of dolphin when out canoeing or SUPing in our little waters and I never get used to it. It's just magical. The idea of boating in silence amidst humbacks is so... well I don't have the words, but I believe I'd be moved to tears. Thank you for sharing.
    "A man builds the best of himself into a boat- builds many of the memories of his ancestors." -Steinbeck

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Wonderful stuff, That is truly a great cruising ground. Love your photos. Sorry I did not manage to connect directly with any of you when I was up that way on the weekend. I saw Eric's boat in Campbell River, and Alex's boat I saw on the road near Sayward.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    What an adventure. I want to do that. Thanks for the pics ~Dan

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    The day we crossed Queen Charlotte Strait from Booker Lagoon to Crease Island, it was dead flat calm and a super pod of of Pacific White Sided Dolphins came through. At first, I could hear this noise in the distance and couldn't identify it - it sounded like a curling, breaking boat wake, except no boats had gone by. Then as the sound got closer, you could see it was Dolphins, practically from horizon to horizon. There must have been over 200 of them, maybe more. I was enthralled and didn't know where to point the camera.

    Alex

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    This trip confirms my deepest admiration for you guys. Thanks so very much for sharing.

    Jeff

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Gentlemen, thanks for a quick view of a truly beautiful part of the world ! Very much appreciated .
    '' You ain't gonna learn what you don't want to know. ''
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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Quote Originally Posted by gilberj View Post
    Wonderful stuff, That is truly a great cruising ground. Love your photos. Sorry I did not manage to connect directly with any of you when I was up that way on the weekend. I saw Eric's boat in Campbell River, and Alex's boat I saw on the road near Sayward.
    In that case I'm sorry I did not get a chance to meet you. The Campbell river waterfront is still a nice place to visit. Hoped to see the Museum, but was closed on Sunday.
    Actually I hung out in Sayward a little while on the way down, I think it is one of the prettiest areas on the island. A couple of local gals told me about a great little campground in the woods off the highway just north of Sayward Junction.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Quote Originally Posted by potomac View Post
    Your sailing grounds are beautiful. I'm so delighted every time one of you guys shares pictures. Looking at these images, it makes me think that your area must have had a profound effect on your outlook regarding boating, helping to shape the whole Sail & Oar phenomenon. I pretty routinely find myself amidst a pod of dolphin when out canoeing or SUPing in our little waters and I never get used to it. It's just magical. The idea of boating in silence amidst humbacks is so... well I don't have the words, but I believe I'd be moved to tears. Thank you for sharing.
    I did a lot of cruising with my folks and family through the years, including in this area. Pretty typical northwest powerboating. Later I had some great kayak trips, including the Broughtens. All of that made a deep impression on me. Sail and Oar is the 3rd iteration.

    The proximity I experienced to humpback whales was completely unanticipated. During my closest encounter (see photo above and imagine another humpback camera left), a whole lot of something coursed through my blood in a very short period of time.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Sweet! I **guess** youse guys going on this trip was worth missing the PT Wooden Boat Festival -- and me, of course.
    Last edited by Thorne; 09-17-2014 at 08:54 AM.
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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Thanks for that....this is what I love most about the WBF.
    The chance to see beautiful areas that I know I will never actually visit.
    I once thought I was wrong, but I was wrong, I wasn't wrong.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Damm, I've been waiting patiently for you guys to bring your boats up this way. I'm on a trip downeast, so poor timing. Eric, I have Accolade on Fishermans Wharf just below the museum.
    Try to look me up when you are back this way. The Discovery Islands would be another adventure for you guys. / Jim

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Man would I love to join you guys on one of these adventures sometime! It's breathtaking!

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Great pics, Yeadon! Thanks for sharing your part of the world. You guys have way too much fun. I gotta tell you, though, those orcas would make me nervous. Did an orca take a test bite out of a sail and oar guy one day and then tell the others that their regular food was much better tasting?

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Quote Originally Posted by chas View Post
    Damm, I've been waiting patiently for you guys to bring your boats up this way. I'm on a trip downeast, so poor timing. Eric, I have Accolade on Fishermans Wharf just below the museum.
    Try to look me up when you are back this way. The Discovery Islands would be another adventure for you guys. / Jim
    Yah we also thought about the Discoveries. From either Rebecca Spit or Lund. There are at least a couple more inlets on the outside to consider as well. James gets credit for being most insistent about the Broughtens this time around. Maybe next time Jim. Will look for you on the wharf.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    I'm interested in visiting Barkley Sound again, but this time leaving from Ucluelet or Bamfield.

    James a had good idea on the ferry ride up. Get a chart of the Salish Sea. Hang it on the wall. Use a highlighter to start filling in areas you have gone. Keep filling in areas until we get too old to do this. See if we can fill in the whole thing.
    Quote Originally Posted by James McMullen View Post
    Yeadon is right, of course.

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    Default Re: Bandwagon, Big Food, Hornpipe & Rowan do the Broughton Archipelago

    Thanks for sharing your pictures and story. You are fortunate to live soo close to such beautiful cruising grounds.

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