Fury Cove to Dawson's Landing to Codville Lagoon

The Docks at Dawson's Landing are a bit rough, but suitable to the purpose.
It is a little difficult to see how they make ends meet with a short season
May 24 - 25, 2015

Dawson's Landing was a bit of a detour from our route, four hours (against tidal currents) inland along Rivers Inlet.  We needed fuel, and had read some favorable comments about it and decided we would go and spend the night.  Having crossed one of the two exposed reaches of the trip, we felt pretty relaxed about our progress.

As early in the season as it was, there was no one else there when we arrived.  The store was closed (though the proprietor opened for us and we bought fuel and some provisions and paid for a place on the dock for the night).

Oh... and showers.  The most expensive shower I've ever had at $80/hr CDN.  If you haven't taken a 2 minute shower lately,  try it... it takes a bit of planning. As I recall, we did a bit of laundry there, too. Still early in the trip, we suffered delusions of needing freshly laundered t-shirts. The cost of doing laundry cured that before long, and even showers became less compelling.

Do I sense wrinkled noses? There is science behind it!  Buckminster Fuller noticed while serving in the Navy that one simply didn't get very dirty or smelly standing watches on ships at sea.  He deduced that the sea air -- fog in particular -- was very effective at keeping one clean and fresh. He designed the Dymaxion Bathroom in service of this notion. The precise requirements for circulation of cleansing fog remain unmeasured (and it must be observed that the Dymaxion bathroom never quite caught on), but my own observation is that the only malodorous clothes I had on the trip were cotton. Wool socks... well, I'm embarrassed to admit how seldom I changed socks on the trip.  Keep them dry, and they don't stink.

So, too, the merino longjohns, and while I did occasionally change between the two pair I had with me, it wasn't because of olfactory offense. As for unmentionables, well, they should be unmentionables. Lightweight, easy to wash in a minimum of fresh water, and suitable for wearing dry in about 3 minutes. Think of them as light-weight Speedos. My distaff readers will understand... explain it to the boys if they still have puzzled looks. But I digress.

Provisions in a place like this are expensive for good reason. There isn't a road for 150 miles. Wheat Thins were $8.25 CDN, and you won't find the best produce you've ever seen. On the bright side, the rum was less than in Seattle, and I'd sooner run out of celery than grog!

Mind you, I'm not complaining... These folks aren't gouging... they are just scraping by, by the look of the place. I don't begrudge them a dollar we spent... but I wouldn't go out of my way to go back.  I think their primary clientele consists of sport fisherfolk and the local boating community.

Darby Channel in the morning mists
We caught an ebb tide at 0530 in the morning, working our way through an intimate, misty channel (Darby Channel) back to Fitzhugh Sound, and turned north, heading to Codville Lagoon. Early on Fitzhugh we saw a couple of pods of Orcas as well as some breaching humpbacks, all at some distance. The first of each that we had seen on the trip, and oddly, the only Orcas I saw on the entire trip.

An Orca fin in the distance on Fitzhugh Sound
Codville Lagoon is a terrific, bomb-proof anchorage that we shared with one other sailboat (never saw a soul, though). There is a steep trail up to a freshwater lake, though we did not take the time to climb it. We were treated to the sight of a bald eagle fishing, though... also a first for the trip. And lots of inquisitive harbour seals, surfacing here, watching, always focussed on the interlopers, diving, surfacing there.... Perhaps not so much inquisitive as wary.

When we set the anchor and shut down the engine, there was a noise coming from the cabin, and we easily identified the bilge pump as its source. I shut off the breaker and pulled up the cabin sole to find excess water in the bilge, and set immediately to removing it. The pump was hot -- overworked -- and my hunch was that it had sucked up some detritus in the bilge and had jammed... which turned out to be the case. I diagrammed the electrical connections carefully, disconnected the pump and we took it apart and found a piece of string impeding its function. An easy fix.  Almost.

They are simple and reliable devices, these pumps. But not so simple that they can't be put back together improperly. The motor/impeller assembly fits on the sluice base two ways, but one of those ways results in a pump that busily circulates water in an unproductive loop, while the other configuration actually results in pumping bilge water out of the boat. I learned this distinction the following day when, again, i heard the bilge pump running continuously while water was creeping slowly up out of the finger holes in the cabin sole. The second fix was faster and rather more effective.


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