Peterson Cruising Rally

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Wed 29 Jul 2015 17:30

Position: 49 21.4 N 123 34.1 W
Course: West Speed: 1.5 knots
Wind: South Sou' West, F2 Light Breeze
Weather: sunny, warm

There is a two week limit for anchoring in False Creek, so with my visa sorted, yesterday I departed said creek and headed up to Gibsons to join the Peterson cruising rally which is hosted by the Blue Water Cruising Association. On clearing False Creek, the breeze was light and once again on the nose, nonetheless it provided for a pleasant sail out of English Bay. By 15.00 we had made it about half way and close by the southern shore of Bowen Island, but the wind was dying and with another ten miles to go and “'appy hour” beckoning I flashed up the BRM and motored the remaining distance, arriving at the Gibsons anchorage at a little after 17.00 just as the rest of the Peterson flotilla was arriving. The anchorage off Gibsons is a little tight as it is on a relatively narrow shelf which deepens rapidly, and much of it is taken up by boats on moorings. I had to search around for a bit before I found a spot with which I was happy with, so it wasn't until 17.30 that I let go the anchor in 6.5 meters of water about fifty meters off the beach. Once I was satisfied that Sylph had her anchor, I jumped in the dinghy and first of all rowed over to Mischief to say hello to Heather, Sylvia's daughter. She was baking a very nice smelling apple pie for the crowd. From there we rowed over to the main event on board a beautiful Hans Christian, where we spun yarns until late in the night, sharing each others stories about how we had gotten into sailing and our adventures since.  (Now I just have to remember everyone's names and who belongs to which boat??)

Today's goal is to head over to the Gulf Islands via Gabriola Passage on the other side of the Strait of Georgia. It is only twenty miles to the passage, but its tidal stream gets up to seven knots so we need to pass through it at slack water at 16.20. I got under way before the rest of the fleet this morning as light winds are forecast for the day and I wanted to give Sylph the best chance of being able to sail all the way. Once clear of Shoal Channel we found a little bit of wind, but now that has died and we are drifting around to the south west of Keats Island, having thus far only made good three miles in the desired direction. I expect the rest of the fleet will be out here soon. Maybe they will bring some wind with them.

All is well.