Friendly Cove

Posted on August 21st, 2006 by Steven

Friendly Cove is at the village of Yuquot, on Nootka island. Yuquot is incredibly small, I believe that no services are available.

Friendly Cove is very small. There were only two other boats anchored there yet there was little space. Luckily the depths are under 10m, otherwise only a single boat would fit. There were three docks, the middle one has transient moorage, but isn’t marked in any way.

The winds blew from the south west, and while the light house sits south west of the cove the wind strength was almost as strong in the cove as it was outside. In short, Friendly Cove isn’t a good harbour.

Some photos.

  • Docks: yes
    • Washrooms: no
    • Showers: no
    • Laundry: no
    • Restaurant: no
    • Gas: no
  • Mooring Cans: one, reserved for the coast guard
  • Cell service: none

Monday, Aug 21, 2006

Posted on August 21st, 2006 by Darusha

Depart: Kyuquot, 9:30 am
Breakfast: Porridge
Weather: Sunny, warm, light wind

11:00 49° 56′ 54 N 127° 20′ 57 W, 15 kt W, 1-2 m swell, full/full, sunny
noon 49° 51′ 44 N 127° 13′ 54 W 20 kt NW, 2 m swell, full/full, sunny
13:00 49° 49′ 33 N 127° 09′ 39 W 10-20 NE, 2 m swell, motoring
14:00 Gilliam Channel buoys, 2 m swell
15:00 49° 51′ N 126° 57′ W 5-10, light chop, genoa
16:00 49° 52′ N 126° 51′ W 10 W, light chop, genoa
17:00 49° 56′ N 126° 40′ W 10 S, light chop, genoa

Motored out of the slalom course of Walter’s Cove and then down a comapss course past the reef. We brought up both sails full and broad reached doing 6 kt in 15-20 and 2 m swell. The wind died in the early afternoon and the swell was uncomfortable making little speed, so we began to motor to reduce wave action.

We had a little difficulty finding the buoys in Gilliam Channel (green is almost invisible in most conditions) and turned to take the waves on our beam as we motored in. An uncomfortable hour later we were in Esperanza Inlet and calm water.

We found a 10 kt wind from behind and ran with the genoa alone, balooned ahead of the forestay like a chute. We made hull speed (6 kt) for several pleasant afternoon hours running down the fjords, leisurely tending the genoa. The wind died at the corner by Little Zeballos River, and we motored to the docks at Zeballos.

Dinner: Fish & poutine at the Zeballos Hotel.


Posted on August 20th, 2006 by Steven

Zeballos is a proper town. It has several stores, hotels, restaurants, post office, police, and even a museum.

Zeballos is at the end of a long fyord, about 10km from the main channel in Esperanza Inlet. It is a bit out of the way, but we preferred to travel further to take in some “urban” comforts.

The public dock at Zeballos has two fingers, with room for a couple dozen 25 foot boats. The dock is in good condition, and there are washrooms across the parking lot from the docks. The dock is exposed to the south but conditions were calm while we where there. Presumably these conditions prevail.

  • Docks: yes
    • Washrooms:yes
    • Showers: yes
    • Laundry: yes
    • Restaurant: yes
    • Gas: yes
  • Mooring Cans: no
  • Cell service: none

Sunday, Aug 20, 2006

Posted on August 20th, 2006 by Darusha

Depart: Klatskino anchorage, 6:55 am
Breakfast: Porridge
Weather: cold, clear, wind light

8:00 rounded rugged island, wind light N, low swell
9:05 50° 13′ 31 N 127° 58′ 08 W
10:00 50° 09′ 06 127° 58′ 47 W, 15-20 kt N, 1+m swell, sunny
11:45 off Clerke Point, 15 kt N, low west swell, sunny
13:00 50° 02′ N 127° 42′ W light south winds, low west swell, sunny
14:00 50° 01′ 16 N 127° 37′ 05 W light south winds, low west swell, sunny, whales
15:00 50° N 127° 31′ W, glassy, low swell

Expecting a difficult day, we departed Klaskino shortly after dawn. We motored out past Rugged Island, then brought up a reefed main and jib. We sailed broad reach in 15-20 kt doing 5-6 kt surfing the swell. Near Solander Island we furled the jib for a dead run. The wind picked up off Solander to near 30 kt. We brought out some jib to balance the helm, then furled to reduce power. We sailed past puffins making great time with just the reefed main. Despite the forecast of gales 30-40, the wind lulled and we had a full genoa out by noon just to keep moving.

Once clear of the Brooks Peninsula the wind switched to light SE, while we wanted to go SE and faster than 1-2 kt, so we had to motor. We motored across Cheleset Bay, where we saw several large whales with dark skin and white flippers.

Our approach to Kyuquot was arduous. We chose to come up Brown’s Passage and spent a long time searching for a buoy marked on the charts but never seen on the water. We eventually found the passage, then motored almost an hour before finding the entrance to Walter’s Cove. This involved a slalom past 3 pairs of buoys in shallow water with narrow channels. Walter’s Cove itself is not deep, but it does provide good shelter.


Posted on August 19th, 2006 by Steven

Kyuquot is a village that surrounds Walter’s Cove. Walter’s cove is hidden behind a small island just off Vancouver Island. There is an extensive group of barrier islands, then a sizeable channel. The entrance to Walter’s Cove involves a series of slalom S-curves around buoys and daymarks. The route is clearly marked by the buoys, but it is quite complicated. All told, we covered over 10km between approaching the barrier islands and docking.

Kyuquot has a number of docks. We stayed at the Government dock, which has two long floats alongside. The dock is in good condition. There is a store at the head of the dock, and a restaurant alongside which was closed when we visited. Walter’s Cove is very well sheltered, there was no wave and essentially no wind.

  • Docks: yes
    • Washrooms:no
    • Showers: no
    • Laundry: no
    • Restaurant: “seasonal”, closed on the August day we were there.
    • Gas: no
  • Mooring Cans: no
  • Cell service: none

Saturday, Aug 19, 2006

Posted on August 19th, 2006 by Darusha

Depart: 9:45, Winter Harbour
Breakfast: Porridge
Weather: Windy, partly cloudy, about 20°

10:45 abeam Kains Island wind NW 15 seas flat
11:45 50° 23′ 03 N 128° 01′ 16 wind NW 20, 1 m swell, sunny
12:45 off Scarfe Reef wind NW 20, 1-2 m swell, sunny
1:45 fairway buoy, wind N 10-20, light chop
2:45 moored

Left Winter Harbour after a leisurely morning in decednt winds. Motored into Forward Inlet and raised a reefed main. Sailed with a reefed main and full foresail until we got out of the inlet. We were on a run, so we furled the foresail and sailed with only a reefed main. The swells were 1-3 m (mostly 1-1.5) and the wind increased as the day went on.

We sailed in steadily increasing winds (and levels of arduousness) around Lippi Point and into Klaskino Inlet. We dropped the main and motored the last few miles into the anchorage where after navigating some rocks and shallows we picked up a mooring buoy. We were the only signs of life other than the birds and trees.

Klaskino Anchorage

Posted on August 18th, 2006 by Steven

Klaskino anchorage ( 50°18′N, 127°49′W ) is a little off the beaten path. Sailing Directions recommended it as well sheltered, and we were eager to find a well sheltered spot as a gale was forecast. We were not disappointed.

The entrance is a bit difficult: there are buoys marking the channel a couple kilometers way, but the turn behind anchorage island is unmarked. Kelp marks the drying rocks that lie along both sides of the enterance. There is a delta on Vancouver island at the south side of the entrance. Much of this flat is always above water, but when the tide is in the depths along the flat are less than 2m in what otherwise appears to be the middle of the channel. The channel proper has 20m of depth at low water, but it lies close to the rocks along anchorage island.

The anchorage was delightful. The water was glassy and the winds light while 20+ knot winds blew just a couple kilometers away. The anchorage is lined with sandy beaches. Consult your charts as several belong to first nations and should be respected. There are four large mooring buoys, again with tires that leave marks on your hull.

  • Docks: no
  • Mooring Cans: yes
  • Cell service: none

Friday, Aug 18, 2006

Posted on August 18th, 2006 by Darusha

Depart: 8:15, Sea Otter Cove
Breakfast: Porridge
Weather: mostly cloudy, cool, rain overnight

9:15 50° 37′ 04 N 128° 21′ 42 W wind NW 10, 1 m swell, sailing full/full, crew bickering
10:20 50° 33′ 42 N 128° 17′ 10 W wind NW 10, 2 m swell, sailing full/full, morale better
11:30 50° 30′ 08 N 128° 11′ 58 W wind NW 10, 1-2 m swell, sailing main only, morale good
12:20 50° 28′ 21 N 128° 08′ 42 W wind NW 5, 1 m swell, main only
1:30 Kains Island
2:30 fuel dock, Winter Harbour

Motored carefully out of Sea Otter Cove after less than an ideal night’s sleep. Encountered 10 kt wind and tried to raise the main on the run without success. Properly instructed (by the elements) we headed up, brought out the main and sailed off on a broad reach. We gybed a few times, the brought down the foresail. This reduced our speed by over a knot but made us happier.

The wind picked up at about 1 pm so we put a reef in the main while on the run. The wind died just befire Kains Island lighthouse, so we brought down the main and motored. Once at the point the wind blew from the east (instead of NW) but we were happy to motor to Winter Harbour.

Winter Harbour

Posted on August 17th, 2006 by Steven

Winter Harbour is a small village. It has fish charters in the summer that support a half dozen lodges, a gas dock, and a store. The roads are uneven, the housesites rugged, and the settlement has a frontier feel.

Winter harbour is large and deep, with a small entrance. This made it suitable for 19th century naval fleets, but isn’t ideal for small craft, particulary as the main settlement and docks are on the west side, exposed to winds funnelled down the valley from the north east. Still, winter harbour is the only place for over 100km to get fuel, so a stop should be part of your plans.

There are three sets of docks in winter harbour. We stayed at the outpost‘s docks because they run the fuel dock. Their sturdy, concrete docks made a good breakwater and their facilities were welcome.

  • Docks: yes
    • Washrooms:yes
    • Showers: yes
    • Laundry: yes
    • Restaurant: no
    • Gas: yes
  • Mooring Cans: no
  • Cell service: none

Thursday, Aug 17, 2006

Posted on August 17th, 2006 by Darusha

Depart: 7:45 am, Bull Harbour
Breakfast: Porridge
Weather: overcast, misty, cool

8:45 Nahwitti Bar winds light, 2′ swell
9:45 50° 52′ 49 N 128° 05′ 41 W winds light, 1 m swell
10:45 50° 51′ 27 N 128° 12′ 29 W winds light, 1 m swell
11:45 50° 49′ 34 N 128° 18′ 58 W winds light, 1½ m swell visibility <1 mile
13:15 50° 46′ 06 N 128° 27′ 23 W past Cape Scott winds light N, 1 m swell visibility 1-2 miles
14:15 50° 41′ 40 N 128° 24′ 34 W winds light, 1-2 m swell visibility 2+ miles

Nahwitti Bar

Motored out of Bull Harbour and into the end of Goletas Channel. As we began crossing Nahwitti Bar, we saw a Coast Guard cutter astern. We crtossed the bar in no wind, long slow swells, few current ripples and no incidents. The Coast Guard vessel passed us astern of Nahwitti Light.

The fog thickened as we crossed the bar and we motored in growing swells toward Cape Scott. Visibility reduced until we could not see land and we motored a compass course with Darusha using the Autotiller and Steven hand steering. We rounded Cape Scott with its point and light barely visible in the fog. The islands to the west were fully obscured. We headed south with the fog lifting, motoring a compass course.

Having made decent but not great time, we opted to stop at Sea Otter Cove. After some concern over the depths, we carefully navigated the confusing rocks and islands at the Cove’s entrance. As we successfully pulled into the Cove and up to a mooring buoy, the engine died as it had been been fouled by a partial fishing net. Darusha dropped the anchor and we inflated the dinghy. Steven cut the offending net away and we stowed the dinghy. Darusha weighed anchor as Steven motored us up to the mooring can, we tied off, snugged down and toasted a successful, if challenging, day.

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