Friday, September 5, 2014

Sucia Island to San Juan Island

Distance traveled:  19.2 miles

Travel time: 2 hrs, 48 mins

Cathryn was a sleepy-head this morning, and it was almost 7am when Bob woke her (he’s usually up by 5:30, she at 6 or 6:30; we go to bed at “Baja Midnight” or “Looper Midnight”, recall, which is anytime between 9 and 10 pm). Bob knows she prefers to move slowly for an hour or two after waking, so it was 9 before we waved goodbye to Rush and Cheri and headed southwest.

The sun was out, and the water calm until we got to the current’s convergence zone near Waldron Island where waves and whitecaps and strong current with beam seas slowed our travel and rocked us pretty hard for an hour.


Approaching Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, we saw “Spike Africa” in the distance, a pretty 1977 wooden sailboat built by Bob Sloan of California. She now operates half-day, multi-day and evening sunset cruise “adventure trips” out of Friday Harbor.


The approach to Friday Harbor is ALWAYS busy, as it’s an enormous marina with lots of boat traffic coming and going in addition to seaplanes landing and taking off, plus the very busy ferry terminal next door to the marina. We had the misfortune to be assigned a slip that, upon arrival far down the fairway, we learned already had a boat in it. So we had to call the marina office back on the VHF, await a new slip assignment, then turn the boat and move elsewhere in the marina. Though we’re getting pretty comfortable docking this single engine boat now, Cathryn was still feeling frazzled when we pulled into the second slip assignment and there were SIX men standing around the slip watching her bring it in and ready to catch our lines (that was the nice part). The old phrase we were taught back in Florida: “Sometimes you watch the show, sometimes you ARE the show!” came to mind. Fortunately it went smoothly.


We have a slip with a great view of the ferry traffic and Mt. Baker (over 12,000 feet) in the distance. We spent the afternoon grocery shopping, doing laundry, watering up and cleaning the boat, but 5:00 brought an end to all that.


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