Friday, February 3, 2012

A Four Sound Day

We left Alice Falls Anchorage in Thompson Sound Wednesday with plans to move to Anchorage Cove, and stage ourselves for departure the next day to George Sound. We found Anchorage Cove to be small and poorly protected from southerlies. There is a strong river current and visible rip with wind against current. We left after dropping anchor twice, unable to lie in a safe position allowing a stern line to the island.

Cruisers info: There is a bouyed line from shore to island, but it is not big enough to accommodate a boat our size, and it is relatively shallow - about 8 feet at low. The fair weather anchorage depicted in the guide is now too deep, and there is not enough room to drop a hook with a line ashore by the all weather site in anything but benign conditions.

We turned and went back into the sound to Southwest Arm, where we found satisfactory anchorage and spent a nice night. Forecast was for diminishing winds. They did.

Cruisers info: The bar at Southwest Arm provides only fair holding, and is made of softball to volleyball size stones. There is a good line strung shore to shore at the base of the cove, and we used it for two abreast quarter lines, which minimized swing as well as ability to drift inshore. I would not consider this all weather compared to Alice Falls.

We had a mostly motor sail to George Sound on Thursday, anchoring in Deas Cove. George Sound was different, still tall cliffed but less steep, and had sharply sloping but green covered walls, instead of the sheer cliffs in Milton Sound. We had a nice tramp over to Neck Cove on the other side where we crossed a relatively recent slide. The area looked like the aftermath of a New England ice storm - there was a small forest of leafless and broken trees as we walked over a scrabble of rocks. We found trail blazes less then knee high, and we estimated about 4' of slide below us. Definitely not a good area to buy real estate.

We saw our first boats in over a week, and heard chatter on the radio. Thompson Sound is one of the Sounds that connects to others inside - and we were seeing tour boats go up the sound from their base in famous Doubtful Sound, our next planned stop. By this time, we were also in nightly contact with Mare` of Bluff Fisherman's Radio. She is on 4417 USB 2030 NZT, and is happy to connect with cruisers along with the network of fisherman that check in regularly.

Cruisers info: The orange bouy at the head of Deas Cove brings a large hawser line from shore. We moored bow to this with a dock line and brought a stern line to the west shore. Trees are diminutive, but there is one 4' round waters edge boulder that happily accepted a surrounding chain, which we then led to our stern line.

Friday was a 4 sound day - as planned we left Deas Cove in light winds in Thompson Sound, and cruised by the entry to Bradshaw Sound as we entered Doubtfull. As it is reachable by cruise ship or adventure touring, Doubtful is known as the get-away sound. There is a small number of inhabitants - fisherman have set up a "hotel" to raft their boats to, and there is a hostel at Deep Cove, a base for a few intrepid tourists. We chose to spend our first night in Crooked Arm which we found to be a stunning, long, sinuous sound. There were hugely tall mounded peaks layered upon one another - breathtaking. If we ever get internet again, we will send pictures! There is also a true swing anchorage at the head of the sound - our first easy anchoring in weeks. The walk across to Dagg Sound (our fourth sound of the day) was rugged - very rugged. 4 Km in 2 hours R/T. Beautiful and enchanting bush ensconced in some tough terrain.

Today is a bit wet, but nothing terrible. We will likely head over to check out Deep Cove.

All is well.


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1 comment:

April Halprin Wayland said...

Doubtful? Crooked Arm? Bruce! I hope you're taking notes--great names!