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Robin & Jim
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Posted By Robin & Jim

The Gulf Islands off Vancouver Island are very pretty, and we've spent a wonderful three weeks exploring small towns and hiking various parks.
There are a lot of new things we have to get used to out here, such as logs.  There is a lot of logging and log handling along the Inside Passage, and a lot of logs get loose.  They can be quite large and you don't want to hit one!

jim and log

We've seen several towns with some kind of log handling operation - wood pulp or lumber mill or shipping, and large natural bays can be full of corraled floating logs...

log boom bay

and long log booms towed by tugs.
tug with log boom

Another new thing to get used to and to watch out for are seaplanes.  They are everywhere, with scheduled flights to/from small towns as well as frequent visits to many other harbors.  We have learned to keep a sharp eye out for seaplanes landing when we're out in the dinghy since they are pretty quiet when they land.  Taking off is a noisy affair so we get plenty of warning.

seaplane

Planes land in the same channels that boats use, and we've seen them take off and land fairly close to us or other boats.  It's just how things are done around here, and everyone seems to deal with it without much fuss.  Some time we'll take a flight on one - it looks like so much fun!
Last week we anchored in Tod Inlet so we could visit the famous Butchart Gardens near Victoria.  They have a nice dinghy dock for boaters to access, and we got a kick out of the sign on the end of the dock...

sign

A little something for everyone - how thoughtful!
Tod Inlet was a beautiful spot that felt very remote, despite being about 10 km from downtown Victoria.

tod inlet

We had cocktails with some local boaters and they warned us about some troublesome otters in the area.  Just as a precaution we closed the side gate to the boat, and it was a good thing since the otters had a big party on our swim platform and in our dinghy overnight.  We never heard them, but they left fish guts and other smelly messes for us.  We used to think that otters were cute, but after cleaning more fish guts off our swim platform again this morning they are Public Enemy #1!
The Butchart Gardens were stunning, and we spent a very long day photographing the incredible variety of flowers around the property.  We're feeling more like locals now - we bought annual passes for the Gardens since we plan to winter in nearby Victoria.  I'll post more about Butchart Gardens in the next blog entry.


 
2 Comment(s):
Dick and Elle said...
We hope you set up a webpage share site just for your photographs. Yeah, we know, your just thrilled with the idea of sitting behind a computer to upload jpegs. We see you have the metric talk down,,,well done!! Well, your creating beautiful retirement memories!!
July 18, 2013 5:15 PM
 
Jim & Cathy said...
Glad to see that you're settling in and having fun! Miss you......
July 10, 2013 12:35 PM
 
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