Monday, Aug 28, 2006

Depart: 8:30, Port Renfrew
Breakfast: Eggs & bread aboard
Weather: clear in the harbour with a fog bank at the mouth

After a surprisingly good night’s sleep, we weighed anchor and motored out to the mouth of Port San Juan. We could see a fog bank across the face of the the port, but the weather report called for fog patches dissipating in the morning, so we left looking forward to a brisk wind ahead.

Instead, the fog lasted all day, so thik that we saw only a brief patch of land prior to arriving in Sooke. Also, the reasonable winds instead grew to a very strong 30-35 kt, along with 1-2 m swells that occasionally broke. At one point we took a breaker over the port side and the cockpit was soaked.

We came to Sooke Inlet unable to see land at all, running 6.5-7 kt under a small jib only. The fog cleared just as we made the harbour mouth, which (thanks to the GPS and very frequent bearings plotted on the chart) we found easily. We negotiated the difficult entrance under power and, thanks to the depth sounder, avoided running aground after misreading the marker buoys in the harbour.

We pulled up to the government dock under sunny skies and with much relief.

One Response to “Monday, Aug 28, 2006”

  1. Travels with Wai Whare » Blog Archive » Sooke Says:

    […] Approaching Sooke harbour in fog and gale force winds was the stupidest thing we did on our circumnvaigation of Vancouver Island. If the fog hadn’t cleared at the harbour mouth we certainly would have badly damaged Wai Whare. I recommend avoiding Sooke in fog in any conditions. Passable anchorage is available a few miles away on either side of Beachey Head while running aground at the mouth of Sooke Harbour is essentially guaranteeded if you can’t see the marks, even with GPS. […]

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