Three SCAMPs, eight nights aboard, seventy nautical miles travelled by sail and oar.
The guys first met at Scamp Camp #1, in Port Townsend WA, in the summer of 2012, where they learned how to build their 11’11” SCAMP sailing dinghies, were dubbed the Pirate Team, and dreamed of sailing together in the Salish Sea. Keith finished ZEPHYR in 2013, and we reconvened in PT for her launch, I finished LUNA in 2014 and the team came to Vancouver for her first splash, and Derek completed LIBERTY 53 a week before for our long-planned cruise this summer.
Keith, and Derek with his lovely lady Lacy, trailered their boats from Oregon to Vancouver on Thursday and the five of us, including my (filleting queen) Chris, set off the next morning for an excellent adventure.
Friday July 17 — Day 1 was a long drive from Vancouver to Quadra Island, 2 ferry rides, 3 boat launchings in Heriot Bay, parking and securing our trailers and tow vehicles, dinner for 9 with friends and family, and bedding down on the dinghy dock.
Ground support at our launch and retrieval location was invaluable. My mom and dad (Fred and Liz) came for the launch, joining our convoy for the final stage from Campbell River to Quadra Island. They helped get the boats in the water, arranged tie-up at the Heriot Bay Inn dinghy dock, had dinner with us on the deck, and stayed overnight in the Inn. And, our very dear friends Rob and Heather (Quadra residents) did ground work reconnaissance, scouting boat ramps and parking for the tow vehicles, and booking dinner at the Inn. We all had a fabulous send-off meal, a few laughs and good fun on the deck overlooking our cruising waters.
An exciting day, but somewhat tempered by the anticipation of the voyage ahead.
Several lessons learned:
- convoying is a communications nightmare when members cross international borders and cellular packages restrict usage (I can see the attraction of CB radio for land travel);
- if at all possible, ferry bookings should be made months earlier;
- ground support in a remote location is a rare treat;
- when sleeping on an open boat at a marina you should not tie up under a lamp pole;
- and, you should check to see if there’s a rock band playing the evening you decide to stay at the dinghy dock! No worries, with all the excitement and a few cocktails, we all slept like babies. It was a good band.