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Sunday, October 30, 2016

Kuiu Island, and more

Kuiu Island in part of the SE Alaska's Alexander Archipelago.  It's actually the 15th largest island in the US, yet only has a population of 10 people.  All of the island is in the Tongass National Forest, and parts are also within Tebenkof Bay Wilderness area, and the Kuiu Wilderness Area.  We spent a good chunk of our time in Alaska this summer circumnavigating and exploring Kuiu Island, and the neighboring areas.
First stop was kind of in the other direction, with a trip to Misty Fiord.  I never tire of all the water falls




Once in Misty Fiord, we anchored for a couple of days and were treated to a visit by a young bear.  Here he is digging for some chow with crows hoping to get some left overs.



Some other people started to approach in a dinghy, and this got the bear's attention.   They are pretty funny looking when they stand up.


Here's a another example of a water fall up close.  The colors are just amazing.


Here's Misty Fior living up to its name, rainbow and all.


Walker Cove




One stop was Coronation Island off the southern tip of Kuiu.  We were in a protected bay, but it was very windy and it was just coming from everywhere.  I have never experience such confused wind.  Here's out anchor trace for the 12 hrs or so that we were there.  You can see the boat was all over the place.
Coronation Island Anchoring

Kuiu Island is home to a LOT of otters, especially in Tebenkof Bay.  Here are three just chillin'


And here is a mom with her baby checking us out.


OK, this waterfall in Red Bluff Bay is really big, and hopefully this sequence of pictures will show it.  Below is the full water fall.   The part circled in red is the next picture.



Here we are zoomed in a bunch, but wait.  The red arrow is pointing to a red Kayak.  That's Laurie out for a paddle.



 After we got around Kuiu we stopped in Farragut bay and went to visit Farragut Farm.  They are completely isolated from everything with the only way in and out via boat, and only at high water.  And once ashore, it's still a 1/2 mile walk to get to the farm.  But despite this, they run a vibrant business selling at the Petersburg market once a week, and supplying fresh veggies to a variety of businesses and small cruise boats throughout the season.  Bo and Marja run the whole operation themselves.  We got a great tour and stocked up on veggies for the rest of our trip.

Bo from Farragut Farm

Farragut Farm

Next stop was Peterburg for the much anticipated Nordhavn Rendezvous.  It was organized by a couple of owners, and blossomed unto the largest gathering of Nordhavns ever, with over 30 boats and 100 attendees.  A good time was had by all, but we got a real curve ball the day before the event started.  Our daughter who lives in Seattle broke her leg, required surgery, and was facing 10 weeks of no driving, no carrying anything, etc..   It's amazing how much we take for granted being able to move around and do things with our hands, and equally amazing how helpless you can be without it.

So Laurie flew back to Seattle to help with everything through the surgery, and I started sorting out how to get the boat back to Seattle.  We had originally planned to keep cruising until around the 1st of August, so this cut us short a bit, but not by too much.  And besides, you need to take what life throws at you.  I'm just glad we were able to change our plans and help out.

I was able to pull together family for crew in two shifts.  First was brother-in-law Paul who flew up to Petersburg and helped get the boat down to Port McNeill in BC, Canada.  One of our stops was Prince Rupert where we checked into Canada, and also checked out the new Cowe Bay Marina.  It's good, all things considered, but Prince Rupert is a pretty exposed harbor.  We usually anchor in a cove nearby that offers better protection, but it was nice to tie up and have access to the town.  Before this new marina, there were almost no accommodations for transient boats.

Prince Rupert


Prince Rupert


We had a bunch of long days, but made good time and didn't get delayed by weather, so arrived in Port McNeill a day early giving Paul time to go on a fishing expedition.


Paul catches fish in Port McNeill


Paul and brother Dave crossed paths at the Vancouver Airport as Paul departed and Dave and significant-other Scottie joined me for the second stretch down to Seattle.  Once again we had no trouble with weather and made excellent time, arriving a day or two early, and affording Dave and Scottie some time to explore Seattle, including an obligatory visit to Bongos for Cuban food.

Brother Dave at Bongos.  "Where's my food?"


Dial forward 10 weeks, and Lindy is back on her feet, driving, rock climbing (indoors), and rapidly regaining all her strength and agility.


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