Fri / 8-1 / sw light / fair / Killarney / Bid farewell to Covered Portage Cove and arrived mid-morning under motor due to light wind and short distance. Thought we could pump out, get ice, do laundry and groceries in 2 hours – hah! The laundromat was the most popular place in town, so Andy did lots of loads and negotiated dryer access while Barbie did website updates. Ended up staying over that night because it just got to late to venture out to new territory and find a good anchoring spot at Thomas. So we had a nice dinner at the Sportman Inn with very nice service and a bottle of the identical wine we had just bought at the LCBO (aka liquor store) but for three times the price. Oh, well, we topped it off with dessert and went back to NorthStar to get to bed early so we could leave early the next morning.
Sat / 8-2 / sw light / fair / Thomas Bay / Left Killarney hazy & early, motored out of the channel and found just enough light breeze to set our full main and genoa with a whisker pole. Sailed along rather handily for the light breeze. Barbie wanted to know if we could also set the jib. Andy thought we needed to wait for the wind to be abeam and that occurred as we approached the turn into Thomas Bay. So we tried that but the jib just made the genoa collapse against it and as Barbie goofed around with it, Captain Andy indicated he needed to concentrate on steering and Barbie needed to concentrate on our navigation instead of continuing this failed experiment. After the usual discussion about such things, we got the jib in and found ourselves a bit confused about Suffolk Punch-John’s advice about how to take the turn around Pinch Island. So, of course, we did it wrong and had to pick our way through the rocks and shoals while little children on one of the outer rock gatherings leapt and squealed with glee at their adventure. We made it in safely to this magnificently beautiful red granite rock bay and ended up tying off shore right next to Suffolk Punch on their swing anchor, much to out delight. The afternoon was beautiful and since we hadn’t yet put up our awning, we invited John and Angela to join us in NorthStar’s cockpit for a glass of wine and more nice interactions together. We have decided they are our guardian angels because of the blessed time we have had while near them.
Sun / 8-3 / sw 10 / fair w evening t-storm / Thomas Bay / We awoke to a beautiful morning, so we headed out in Little Dipper to explore the inlets and rocky shoals to the east of the bay and found the most beautiful and peaceful world of cruising we have seen so far in our adventures. Several kayak campers had staked out one of the islands so we waved and went on to explore several more. As we decided it was time to return for lunch, John and Angela showed up in their wooden dingy to try a little fishing. We waved and came on back to NorthStar. After lunch, Andy decided it was the perfect day to put another coat of Semco oil sealer on the teak, so Barbie decided it was the perfect day to escape to the big rock about 100 feet away and refresh a fire pit she had discovered yesterday for a late afternoon fire and weanie roast. Then she swam around to all seven or-so boats in the bay to invite them to join us that evening on the rock. The teak looks marvelous, the party was well-attended, and the food and beverage and chatter among sailors was great. In addition to the Suffolk Punch folks, we met three other couples. One couple, Dan and Amy, sail out of Manitowok with their two young cats who ride along while walking on the edges of their kayaks. One fell in and got right back in earlier in the afternoon, completely unscathed.
Mon / 8-4 / sw light / fair / Thomas Bay / Awoke to wet awning after the night-time rain. But the cloudy morning gave way to some sunshine off and on all day. We hopped into Little Dipper to head further east in search of the river and hiking trail Angela had told us about. Once again we didn’t take our charts and although we went further, we still didn’t quite reach it. We did see a large snapping turtle that surfaced right near the dingy and then dove away and popped its head out to take a more distant look at us before disappearing for sight. Andy patiently helped Barbie try to fish and untangle her line until she finally got a bit of successful casting off, but no bites. Came back, ate left-over potato salad and baked beans from last night’s feast, and then took a good nap. Andy wanted to take some more pictures in the afternoon light, but first, Barbie wanted to lure Jennifer (the cat) into the dingy. With patience and a little grabbing and placing, we got her first onto the swim platform, then back in the cockpit, then straight out to the dingy before she decided that was a big enough adventure for her first attempt. Mindy (the other cat) kept her distance but asked Jennifer all about it afterwards. Then we hiked up to the top of the red granite rocks near our boat and found the most incredible view of the land and water we had been exploring and beyond out to the sea. Andy took some great pictures which we’ll try to get posted soon. Came back for a quiet evening of left over hotdogs, Mount Gay & Coke (Barbie) and beer (Andy).
Tue / 8-5 / sw 10 / fair / Thomas Bay / Awoke again to everything wet from night time rain shower, but Barbie had her coffee and Andy had his cereal under the awning in a pretty dry cockpit. It really works! As the sun came out we went over to our favorite rock 100 feet away and were able to start a campfire with the help of a couple of paper towels and the pretty-dry limbs we had gathered yesterday and the day before. Barbie cooked up some bacon and blueberry pancakes on the excellently-leveled griddle thanks to Andy’s rock piling around the fire. Ate up way too many carbs and thought we were done for, but we then took the afternoon to finally find that river, carefully motor up it about a quarter mile (a 30 foot-wide river), secured Little Dipper, and climbed the well-marked red granite rocks and through the woods and rocks again to get to the top and a great lookout across Georgian Bay. The sights are absolutely magnificent and we had a peaceful rest at the top on a nice flat rock before decending. We got back just in time for John and Angela’s invitation to join them and their friends on Georgian Mist – Bob and Kathy – for a 2 and a half hour “happy hour” and lots of sailing stories replete with many tales of mishaps. The trail is a kids’ paradise for seek-and-find the next mark on the rocks. We felt like kids at heart if not in the musculature but our workouts at the gym are now greatly appreciated.
Wed / 8-6 / n 10 backing to w 10 / chance of afternoon rain or t-storm / Killarney and back to Thomas Bay / Plan to leave our anchorage at 7 am to go get ice and pump out and a few supplies, then return to this beautiful bay for one last day before heading east to Collins Inlet as weather permits. Hope to get this much posted on our website when we get to Killarney.