Desolation Sound

Theodosia Inlet

Saturday, August 27, 2011S.V. CAMBRIA

The head of Theodosia Inlet, Desolation Sound Marine Park.

Tempted by the promise of a spectacular view of the Coast Mountains, we left Wooten Bay this morning and went into Theodosia Inlet where the cruising guides disagree – there's either tranquil surroundings to enjoy or nothing at all – but the view is undisputed as being stunning, so off we went.

The entrance to Theodosia Inlet is narrow, snake-like and shallow but fairly straightforward if you anticipate the currents and stay in the centre as you wind through the channel which suddenly opens to reveal a beautiful, lake-like anchorage with the rarely seen coastal mountain range creating a stunning backdrop reminiscent of our time in The Broughtons.

In all fairness, it's incredibly beautiful … or it would have been before the most recent logging operation began here in 1998 (or thereabouts), but they detract from the remote feeling of the bay and the idyllic scenery with log booms lining the shore and scared landscape. Holding no real appeal for either one of us, we decided to turn around and leave forgetting to do the most important thing: turn the VHF radio on channel 16 to make (and listen for) a securit√© call letting approaching boats know we were coming out and vice versa.

The tide was coming in and, as we were exiting the channel, we were pushing against the current and approaching one of the narrowest spots when a tug pulling a barge rounded the corner in front of us.  I honestly didn't know what we were going to do – there couldn't possibly be enough turning room.  But, like David said later, it didn't matter: we were either going to make it, hit the rocks, or get hit by the tug.  He had no choice and spun the boat around on a dime… well, maybe a quarter or a fifty cent piece.  But he did it and went back into the bay calling the tug operator – who just happened to be a woman – to apologize.  She had indeed put out a securit√© call, but we wouldn't have known that.

After the tug cleared the channel, David gave it another go and we made it without incident but the current was already flowing much faster and had gone from one knot (against) to up to three (against).  On the bright side, with the incoming tide, the water level in the channel was higher making it less stressful to get out … or maybe that was due to the absence of another tug.

Having had enough excitement for one day, we dropped anchor in Susan Islets, just north of the entrance to Theodosia Inlet.   It's a quiet little spot tucked in behind three of four small islands and perfect for exploring by kayak.  We paddled around for hours enjoying the late-summer sun and looking for treasures in the water before returning to the boat to enjoy yet another amazing sunset and the solitude of our little anchorage – it was pure magic!

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