Monday, December 2, 2013

From Shining BC to Shining PV

From Shining BC

The new engines were perfect for our trip to Desolation Sound.  It was good to get north for a little bit of cruising.  Our first anchorage was interesting - deeper than we typically have anchored but we have plenty of rode so there were no worries despite a bit of predicted wind.
It was somewhat of a surprise when we found that we had actually traveled 5 nautical miles on the hook by simply moving from side to side.

The  fishing was pretty much over but the prawing was quite good.  

Doug is always ready to challenge local knowledge.  There are no crabs in Desolation Sound due to the warm water.  Well, that is true but not completely true.
Hairy Crab

We believe this is a Hairy Crab which is typically found in Alaska.  If you have information let us know.

Doug and Box Crab

Box Crab

The Box Crab were caught at about 200 feet.  When they pull their legs in tight they are shaped like a box.

A quick trip to Manson to see friends there including Maria.

A quick stop in Lake Oswego to see Kathy and celebrate the opening of her new law firm (without photos).  A quick stop in Gilbert to see Denise and John (also without photos).  And on to Mexico.

To Shining PV

Deck View

We arrived in Mexico without incident and hunkered down to relax and wait for Shari and Jude to arrive.  Jude was ready to come back to Mexico and to see Papa and Nanna again.

A happy airport reunion between Doug and Jude.

And then a walk along the Malacon in Shining PV.  Daddy is coming in a few days.

Can you note the resemblence?

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Late Start

With pretty new engines

And shiny new props

We finally left Port Townsend.  Initially, it was our intention to spend the 4th of July in Canada.  Now we are hoping to spend the 4th of October in Desolation Sound.  The fish will be waning and the bears will be sleepy but we have a weather window and we are heading for Desolation Sound..

Port Townsend gave us a beautiful send-off complete with a rainbow over the Jefferson County Court House

And another that followed the Port Townsend Ferry

After 45 knot winds that pinned us in port for three extra days we woke to a glorious morning and headed north

Hoping for a glorious weather break to compliment our short season.  

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Sailor Superstitions

And how did Jan and Doug anger the sea gods.....

Changing the name 

Once a boat has been christened it is important to honor the sea gods with a renaming party.  During the party you implore the powers of the sea to bestow good luck upon the ship.

Leaving port on Friday

One theory is that this superstition has its roots in the crucifixion of Christ on Good Friday.  To this day many mariners will not leave on a Friday.

Black Bags

Black bags are deemed to be bad luck for mariners

Red sky at morning sailor take warning
Red sky at night sailor's delight.

Primarily this adage is related to weather.

Cat on board

The only cat that brings good luck would be a black cat.


While ubnclothed women have the power to calm the sea gods, clothed women bring bad luck at sea.  We are just going to have to work on this one since Jan is quite insistent on clothing.


If you noticed that neither Jan or Doug had eyes tattooed on their eyelids so that they could watch for danger when they slept you can go directly to the head of the class.

Good things that have come in the summer interrupted:

Puerto Vallarta Reunion in Penticton

Doug and Jan both earned their Life Master ranking while at the Penticton Bridge Tournament.  Great to see both our PV and our Washington friends during our stay.

We got to spend time with old college friends, Kristie and Bruce as well as the unphotographed Wayne and Martie who have returned from India.

Jan had lunch with Janet and Janna at the Skamania Lodge.

Jan and Doug caught a nice 15 lb chinook off Port Townsend.  we caught it on the wonderful new rods that Ron (Doug's son) and his fishing partner made.  They are wonderful - you can feel every flip of the tail through the rod.  

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Angering the Sea Gods

Doug and I got the bigger-boat-bug a couple of years ago. We looked in California last fall and toiled many hours over internet brokerages.

Our New Boat
This spring we found our last boat - a 55 foot Pilothouse Symbol which we renamed without ceremony: SeaDrifter.  She is a beauty with three staterooms, two heads, a washer/dryer,  a spacious salon and dinner seating for 8.  The galley is lovely with granite counter tops, a trash compacter, a dishwasher  and a Miele/Gaggenau range and oven.  

The interior wood is maple which lends an airiness to the sometimes gloomy northwest. 
The Pilot House

Old friends, Bruce and Kristie joined Debra, Ralph, Doug and me  for a crab feast.  I really did not believe that we could catch more crab than we could eat.  But I was wrong try though we did! 

It was a Friday morning when we left  Puget Sound.  Although our season was shorter than is typical it promised to be a good trip.  We even remembered to stash our black suitcases on board to fly south to the family reunion.
First on the agenda was a trip through the Ballard Locks to resolve some electrical issues. Navigating the Locks with a fishing boat tied alongside was a bit of a challenge but our crew (Debra and Ralph) made it happen. 
Crewing through the Locks

The Hiram Chittendon Locks were built in 1906 to link Puget Sound with Lakes Union and Washington.  Prior to the building of the Locks there was a stream that flowed out of the Lakes and into the Sound.  Today there is are two sets of locks that allow boats of all sizes to navigate the 22 foot difference on a mean tide.
Jan Handles Lines 

We left  Seattle after a breathtaking sunrise over the Cascade Mountain.  We spent our next night anchored in Port Ludlow.   Dreaming of big prawns we cleared customs in Bedwell.   The Canadian Customs came on board and asked if you had any citrus or pets on board.  No citrus and Jan pointed at our only pet - a wooden tabby she bought in Paris.

We provisioned in Nanaimo and headed north.  Ten miles out of Nanaimo we dropped a valve in the port engine.  This is not a good thing at all.  Many $$$$$

Hauling the SeaDrifter in Port Townsend

Removing the Engines through the Salon Floor

Without realizing it we angered the sea gods in six different ways.  Can you find the six superstitions embedded in the text and pictures?  There will be a short blog tomorrow with the answers.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Miss Lia Graduates

It is with great pleasure that we celebrate (belatedly) the June graduation of our granddaughter, Lia, from Manson HIgh School.

 Lia's mother, Maria lived with Jan many years ago and our connection has brought together two cultures and created a loving bond between our families.  Jan has always been Lia's grandma and that is such a pleasure for all.


Over time our bond has come to include Maria's siblings and Lia's cousins.  No trip to Manson is complete without a wonderful family gathering that features great food from both cultures.
Lia will join her cousin, Carlos, at Eastern Washington University.  Carlos is the first of his family to attend college.  This summer he is working two full time jobs so that he can start his junior year.  He is studying police science and wants to work in juvenile probation.


In the Mexican culture no celebration would be complete without a fiesta.  Lia's graduation was a wonderful carne asada at her aunt and uncle's home.  It was for Jan an opportunity to see old friends from her Manson years.

Being a parent is never really easy and to be a single parent has its own challenges.  To celebrate a new chapter in Maria's life she took a vacation with us.   We stayed on the new boat in Olympia and took some small trips including one to Victoria.

Years ago Jan's brother sold this Shinto shrine to the Greater Victoria Art Museum.   Great trip to celebrate a job well done by both Maria and Lia!  Too bad you had to work, Lia!  

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Yellowstone in the Springtime

Yellowstone National Park was the first national park in the world.  It was created through an act of Congress in 1872 and signed into law by President Ulysses S. Grant. 

 Yellowstone is a magical place:  spectacularly scenic park with abundant wildlife. 

Buffalo Mirror Images

On the Yellowstone River, Artist's Point is one of the most photographed and painted areas in the park.  Richly colored hues and a wild waters make it particularly spectacular.

Mineral Colored Views

Doug and Jan
Reintroducing wolves to Yellowstone has created much controversy among biologists as well as ranchers in surrounding areas.  This healthy wolf was not overly concerned with our human presence and was photographed from the road.
Yellowstone Wolf

Baby buffalo are born red and gradually turn dark brown.  These guys stay quite close to mama who protects them from wolves and grizzly bears.

Lunch time
Play time

Yellowstone has two lodges which are typically booked a year in advance.  The evening before our arrival Doug tried to make reservations and IT WORKED!  A last minute cancelation worked in our favor.  It is a special experience to stay in the park a short walk from Old Faithful and a dinner reservation from the Yellowstone Lodge.

Dinner at Yellowstone Lodge
Inlayed Wood Detail at the Snow Lodge
It is a treat to see moose in the park.  We were fortunate to have two different sightings.

Eating by the River

Young Moose

Near the northern section of the park, there were herds of elk.  Currently, there is a controversy among wildlife biologists.  The wolves are keeping elk herds in check which is providing more berries for the bear populations which prey on the baby buffalo.  Is this a good thing?  ask some.  Nature will balance herself.

 A Resting Young Bull

Many animals have "Follow-Me" signage which allows the young to clearly see where the adults are moving.

Elk's Follow-Me

Prong Horn Antelope's Follow Me

Although Old Faithful may be the most famous geyser in the world, the name geyser is derived from Geyser found in central Iceland.

Old Faithful

Although grizzly bear are the most fearsome animal in the park, it is actually the buffalo that injures and kills the most park visitors.  Buffalo are extremely agile and very fast.

"From where the sun now stands I shall fight no more forever. "   Chief Joseph
In the late 19th Century it was popular for wealthy Americans to tour the wild west.  Among the touring destinations was, of course, Yellowstone National Park.  In late August 1877 there were 35 tourists in the park and a group of 750 Nez Perce with 1400 horses being pursued by 2000 US Calvary troops and hundreds of Crow Scouts.  The Nez Perce were led by the famous Chief Joseph.

On August 24, 1877, the Radersburg tourist party of 5 people, was camped in the Mary Mountain area.  A scouting party led by Yellows Knife came upon their small camp.  Yellowknife felt the Nez Perce could not risk exposure to the US Calvary and forced the tourists to the large encampment of Nez Perce Indians where they were held captive.

Upon the counsel of Poker Joe, a half-white sub-chief of the Nez Perce, the captives were released and made their way down Mary Mountain.  Unfortunately, they encountered a group of 30 Nez Perce stragglers who decided to return them to the main encampment.  A fight ensued and two of the white men in the party were shot at near point blank range.  Miraculously, both men survived.  The remaining three tourists were given the protection of Chief Joseph.

Near Nez Perce Ford

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Our Midwest Connections

From Zacatecas Doug and I drove north  to Indianapolis to see a most charming two year old boy and his Mama and Daddy.  Well worth the extra miles.  Although we drove through Texas and stayed in Hope, Arkansas we did not pause to take photos.  Doug met my goal of only spending one night in Texas.  A good drive north.



When Papa Doug reads Hello Ocean to me it brings back memories of Puerto Vallarta.

Water is so much fun!

Mama runs a tight ship

Since I could walk, Mama has made me take my tray to the kitchen.  It's my job.  Someday my bride will thank my mama.



After a nice visit with Shari, Ryan and Jude we knew we needed to keep heading toward home.  We left Indianapolis and headed to see Sharon and Charles.  We met these charming friends in Puerto Vallarta and have stayed with them twice in Nashville.  They hosted a delicious Southern rib dinner that included other friends, Lucy and Wendell.  The photographer must have been to busy eating to get pictures of everyone.

Friend Sharon

From Nashville it was a short drive through some "interesting'" country in southeastern Missouri to Jan's family in St. Louis.   Tim has just opened a vinyl record store in a charming section of St. Louis.  We had a nice visit and spent some time with Jan's Uncle Russ. 

Jodi, Jan and Uncle Russ


Our friends from Jan's college years,  Martie and Wayne have charming grandchildren two of whom are not far from St. Louis.  We had a great visit with Heather, Mark, Joshua and Julia.  Joshua promises to be a boat guest soon.  How fun will that be.

Joshua, Julia, Jan and Doug


A deep apology from us to Aunt Barb in Denver.  We had a lovely visit with her and with Jan's cousin, Don, and neglected to take any photos.  It was such fun to see them.  We left early in the morning to make Yellowstone National Park.