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edited December 2021 onward

Newly back from a November road trip to Oregon USA my intuition about not yet time to set off cruising the open oceans and visit distant ports is set in concrete. While I did not have border troubles meeting the requirements for entry while in  pandemic times is not easy. The world is also facing a new strain threat.

Official winter Solstice is looming a couple weeks away with Christmas a few days after. Determined to stay put this year and not deal with traveling for one thing although I have good tires on my van they are not approved snow tires. As seen in the photo we have snow with more in the forecast. Moored to the docks now for my fourth season here at the Gorge Cortes Island for winter allows the comfort of a cozy heated boat, water, and all the amenities of this five star marina complex.

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Sailing Singlehanded

     I am looking forward to spending Christmas with just myself and my boat home. Companionship and company is a welcome perk to our lives but does not define who or what we are, or what our life is all about. My life is full. My lifelong dream to own and live aboard my boat is a reality now. Now retired finishing the last of needed boat project is limited to my budget and is taking more time, however the freedom to spend each day as I choose living the life I choose aboard and on the ocean is a viaje de los sueños .

(voyage of dreams)

Is It Spring Yet?

Winter on the Docks - Gorge Harbour Marina

    Social life during winter is minimal with the scourge of winter upon us. We live aboards are much like Jack in the Boxes hiding below decks sticking our heads out of the hatches only long enough to confirm it will be not till Hell freezes over before I am going out there. 

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A good portion of the winter moorage crowd is us liveaboards - we are all good friends and should a fine day show up visits are in order usually dockside. Some like my friend Rod are both Winter and Summer neighbours. 

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Christmas has come and gone. An Arctic Outflow system has engulfed our coast with temperatures with wind chill of -20 C. Especially feeling grateful moored to docks not only with power and all the amenities but also back up power as there has been frequent grid power outages. Photo is my shore side view of adjacent Whiskey Three dock. I stitched four separate photos into this panorama shot. 

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New Years 2022

   Arctic Cold mass continues to ensue. In the world of sailing (at least mine) winter aboard is heaters cranked and cozy times below.

    Today surprised us liveaboard crowd with a day of bright sun - at least enough to warm the soul, if nothing else.

    Picture Whiskey (west) dock 1 across from dock 2 (my side) captures Winter Wonderland here for awhile it seems.  

The Captain takes on The World

   This World has been kicking us in the shins for some time now. Time to fight back. 

   New Year - New Attitude - One has only to flip open the old book of Pirate Code. 

    There are rules but they are only guide lines when it comes to Parlay for our Rights. Hoist The Colours, Run out the Cannons. Adventure does not break the heart and will only kill you if you do not do it right. Raise the Sails, Set the Watch, there be Adventures to be had Mates...  

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January 2022 - a new year

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A Sailor's Sailor - Winter's Story

     I have nothing but admiration for my young sailor Facebook friend Patricia. Sailing her woodstove heated boat from our south coast to way up our north through tide ridden narrow passages, open Pacific, onward up our coast in the worst of what winter has thrown us for years.

     Her and her faithful crew Winter at her side – scrounging for firewood, making her way under sail with only a four hour reserve on her electric engine for backup power.

     I do not doubt her sailing skills for a moment – she will soon be sailing around the corner in Lama Pass to her destination unscathed.                    Remembering the Ernest Shackleton ad looking for crew for his Antarctic expedition – “safe return doubtful” This is this Winter’s Story – safe voyage my friend. - Graphics by me - photos SV Oka

Tropical Dreaming of places I have been 

PuKo'o Lagoon Molokai

    Back few years on our many trips to Maui I became friends with a local liveaboard living at anchor right on the famous Ka'anapali Beach. He worked at Leilanai's On the Beach, with his boat anchored in front - so happened we frequented Leilani's.

     Steve owned a Hunter 37 sloop with modest draft. He had marked the way into PuKo'o lagoon through the extensive reef with bleach bottles. To this day a highlight of sailing trips to be anchored in what only could be called a Pirates Lair hideaway with sandy beaches and leaning palm trees.

Picture Capt'n Ev - PuKo'o lagoon. (soundings in fathoms)

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Calling the Gorge Home

     The Gorge is like a gallon Jug - to get in you must squeeze into a tiny entrance. Inside the jug is it's own world. To visit the jug from the big city you must first take a ferry to an island. You then need to drive a hundred miles north. Then you need to take another ferry to another island. No it does not stop there you must take another ferry to yet another island, weather allowing, it can be a rough passage.

     Sailing north to the Gorge in the summer is usually head winds on the nose all the way. Or with nasty weather expect some big seas in a lot of open water to get here.

     Our home here is like a ship in a bottle but I would not have it any other way. If you are an islander, you are in, you are family. The Gorge is just one jewel of many awesome destinations Cortes has to offer. We are also neighbours with the sought after cruising grounds of Desolation Sound Marine Park and area.

     Summer home is my mooring at the red X. Winter is at the five star marina right across from my summer home with every amenity imaginable. All I have to do is take a trip on our two ferries to quickly see what the world out there is still facing. Sad - here the trip up the steep hill to the store and office one may stop for a breath - that's about it.

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