Queens Cove to Hot Springs Cove
Saturday, June 12 - Off at 5:50 to am to Zeballos. I saw my first and only deer on the whole trip. In a regrown clearcut, of course. Zeballos Inlet is in high, steep mountains. There is no ocean swell here, and the water is silky smooth, Corleto's wake visible for miles astern. The store was closed but I was able to buy some fast film for the telephoto lens, ice and mail a card, which I dropped through the slot in the Post Office door. Also, I filled my drinking water jugs with some good tasting Zeballos water. My tank water finally started tasting like tank water again. It must be from the lines.
The route down Tahsis Channel was so windy I could make little headway under engine alone and there was too much wind for an unreefed main. I turned around and back to the narrows I had just passed through. After several unsuccessful tries at getting Corleto hove to, I finally just let her slowly run in circles while I relashed the main to a double reef. By the time we returned the wind had lessened and we made progress down the channel, tacking the entire way to Nootka, where I dropped the sail and motored on to Santa Gertrudis Cove Provincial Marine Park.
Anchoring in Santa Gertrudis Cove Provincial Marine Park
Rounding Estevan Point
Here I had a dilemma. Two guide books say to enter the southern part of the cove to the south of the opening, the third book says to follow the chart, which shows two submerged rocks to the south side of the opening. John had come in earlier and had anchored in the best part. I swung in from the north until I could clearly see the two rocks that were charted and then proceeded slowly between them on autopilot with me up on the bow. I didn't want to get too close to John, yet didn't want to crunch on a rock that was supposedly off to the other side.
I finally picked my spot and it worked fine but I spent yet another worrisome night, getting up and checking every hour or so.
45 mi - 11.5 hours - very rainy and rolly all night
Sunday, June 13 - Underway at 8 am after shaking out the reefs and hanking on the working jib again.
I swung by to look at Friendly Cove. There was the pilothouse. Then out to round Perez Rocks. The seas were very rolly and it's shallow out a long way. Wind was SE so I tacked south, out to the 60 fathom line where it was smoother. I started plotting my position every half hour and found my progress to the east very dismal.
The fog gradually thinned as the wind weakened. I was running against a 2 knot tide. First I saw the pilothouse go past me then John and Barbara, both having larger hulls and bigger engines. Corleto is capable of a knot more than I push her but she vibrates so badly, I never run her at top speed.
I crawled by Estevan Point in rolly seas and thin fog. The lighthouse took many hours to pass.
The sun finally broke through and it was a pretty sight as I passed through the foam off Barney Rocks. I pulled into the float at Maquinna Provincial Marine Park (Hot Springs Cove) just ahead of where the pilothouse was tied up. My least graceful landing of the trip. I nearly wiped my lifesling off on the pilothouse's plow anchor.
I headed up the boardwalk with shampoo and towel and had the place all to myself. After returning, I realized I no longer had my wallet. I found it back at the springs, 3 more miles up and back on the boardwalk. I came across John on the way back. He had carved his boat's name in a plank and joined me on Corleto to chat while I cooked up a batch of pasta for my dinner. They were off to Coyote Cove the next day and I was off to Matilda Inlet and then homeward, so we said goodby.
26 mi - 12 hours underway - barely over a 2 knot average for the whole day - heavy mist.