Thursday, July 17, 2014

Gulf Islands Trip Pt. 3 - Pirates!

With the engine glitch of the Pass now behind us, it was time to sit back and enjoy what was before us. We had a 9kn breeze coming from the north and since we were headed south, running with the wind would be a nice comfortable change from the strong winds and seas of our Crossing.

Tarka- Hank going forward to adjust his headsail

It wasn't long before Tarka was way out on front with Corleto struggling to keep up with her working jib.
I looked at Charlene who was now nice and settled and said I think we should put up the drifter. She looked at me with that look and said, "If you think you should than do it."
I scurried forward with the drifter bag over my shoulder and doused the jib. I packed it tightly to the rail leaving it hanked on the forestay. Then I hanked on the drifter above the jib and then hoisted the halyard. The light breeze instantly filled the sail. The sail change gave us an extra knot in speed. We now could catch up, at least keep up and not fall behind.
It was not long before we had to make a starboard turn between the north end of Thetis Island and the Decourcy group of Islands. This put us on a very nice beam reach and Corleto responded quickly. That was some nice swift but, calm sailing after that turn and both Corleto and Tarka enjoyed the exercise.

But as all things do, this beam reach soon came to and end with another course correction making our heading due south towards Telegraph Harbour. Again we were running with the wind but our speed was of the 2.5 kn range.

Tarka closing in

I looked over at Tarka who was now closing in on us. It wasn't long we were running close parallel courses. Hank had this grin on his face as did Caroline. He had what looked like a boat hook in his hand, and for a minute I thought he was coming close to raft up or something. Then, all of a sudden, he points this boat hook towards us and lets fire a stream of water.

Tarka's crew using stealth as the close in- we didn't suspect a thing.

We were under attack! The only thing missing was Tarka flying the Jolly Roger!
Lucky for me Tarka's gunnery and range control systems were a bit off, the volley of cold water fell short of it's intended target. And now the element of surprise was lost.
Of course we all laughed like madmen at the hijinx.

Note to self: Arm Corleto with Kinc's long range potato cannon for next year!

Before long we were headed into the long channel up to Telegraph Harbour. I was concentrating so hard as we entered the harbour, as it is narrow and busy. A float plane landed next to Corleto and scared the shit out of me as I did not hear it until it was beside us.

Corleto tied up at Telegraph Harbour- Tarka in the background

Ah yes, Telegraph Harbour and what a treasure this place is. We pulled into the dock tied the boat down, and on the finger next to us, that Pirate ship, Tarka, her crew still smiling about the brief skirmish at sea. We all would laugh about the encounter again as we shared a meal on day two. Corleto's skipper would get his revenge on the horseshoe pitch.

Lots of laughs aboard the target vessel Corleto

Hank and Caroline are wonderful travel mates. We felt very privileged to have joined them to this point of our trip. Their humour keeps everyone entertained. But Telegraph Harbour is where we both went on our own courses. Tarka was heading to Ladysmith and Maple Bay, Corleto to Ganges on Salt Spring Island. We would keep tabs via texts.
We will catch up again at our home marina in Horseshoe Bay. I am sure there will be many stories to share then.
Telegraph Harbour Marina- If you get a chance- go there
Goin' for a row around the Harbour.

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