Monday, August 20, 2007


Well, we got up on Sunday and it was raining, and the weather observations made it sound pretty tame out at sea, so we bagged our plan to hang out in the San Juans and scooted out the Strait of Juan de Fuca. We had a surprisingly smooth passage right past Race Rocks and along the central strait. When we got to Neah Bay, instead of spending the night like we usually do, we decided to push on overnight, in hopes of reaching the Columbia River bar in time for the late afternoon flood tide. Alas, we hit a northgoing current which slowed us down by a knot, so we decided to detour into Westport and spend the night. We had never been across the Gray's Harbor bar before, and it seems like it could be more challenging than the Columbia bar in bad conditions. But conditions were light today and we had no problems. No sooner had we put a line around a cleat than the US Coast Guard arrived for a safety inspection of our boat. We were asked to produce boat papers, drivers licenses, and all of the required equipment such as life jackets, flares, horns, etc. We passed with flying colors!
It was kind of a dreary day in Westport, but we entertained ourselves watching the sports fishermen (we didn't see any women!) unloading king salmon and tuna from the charter boats. We also watched the launching of a huge mega-yacht from the Westport Shipyard, which produces about a dozen of these resource-guzzling behemoths per year.
The New Hope Cafe seemed to be closed, but we had a memorable dinner at Takohachi's Restaurant - salmon with kumquat ginger sauce, seafood hot pot, and a unique flourless chocolate cake. As Waggoner's Cruising Guide would say: "recommended."
Tomorrow bright and early, if the weather gods are with us, we will make it the rest of the way to the Columbia, and start up the river towards Portland. We should be home by Thursday.


Nancy said...

I think the Coast Guard in Westport gets a little bored - they wanted to inspect us again when we were there a few weeks ago. Luckily, one inspection a year seems to make them happy. We're glad you had a good trip, and were sorry we weren't able to meet up with you. We're in the same slip in Hayden Bay as last year. We'd love to get together with you to catch up and hear more about your summer!

Nancy (and Cory)

Deb said...

Finally the sun came out today. The rain was really wonderful, we really needed it. I've made the birdseed last, but I think tonight is it - you may want to get some on the way home. vickie I thought about having a wake for the one hanging plant (giant snowflake (sutera)) that I managed to almost kill - it is coming back but looks like it has a bad case of alopicia. Sorry, one of the days I just didn't get down to water when it was hot (not long after you left). Everything eles did ok. See ya when you get here.