ELFIN COVE ARRIVAL

My new friend Red stopped by last night with a beautiful thick piece of King Salmon.  I cooked it for lunch today – I am stuffed.  There is still more to eat, what a chore.

Sea to Plate in an Hour. Photo Ray Penson
Sea to Plate in an Hour. Photo Ray Penson

Last night in Roses Bar I met a lady from Anchorage who has 57 dogs for pulling sledges.  Interesting to hear how they work and travel.  The dogs can cover fifty miles a day easily, camp out at night and do it again the next day.  Its not a good idea to fall off the sledge as the dogs don’t stop.  A bit like falling overboard when the boat is on autopilot I suppose.

I enjoyed my stay in Pelican, described as ‘a drinking village with a fishing problem’.  I have seen other places in Alaska described the same way.  They certainly do catch a lot of fish.

This morning was raining, wet, overcast, misty and generally damp all over.  Gradually it cleared and this afternoon I had a spectacular view of Glacier Bay mountains and the Brady Glacier in the distance across Cross Sound.

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This morning we crossed fifty-eight degrees North.  It sounds a lot but in reality it’s the same as North Scotland, I used to work much higher latitudes in the North Sea.  It’s just the topography here make sit so unique in close proximity to the mighty North Pacific Ocean and its massive weather systems.

On the trip up from Pelican I saw a whale ahead.  I was standing in the cockpit looking ahead for him and he surfaced next to the boat.  The first I knew was when I heard the explosive sound of his exhale, I nearly jumped out my skin.  I saw the first Puffins today, my book tells me they are Horned Puffins and not tufted Puffins.

Yesterday I was doing a bit of cleaning up and contemplating where all the hair and bits come from.  It’s the human body of course, constantly shedding skin and hair.  I then got to thinking that the boat is a bit like a spaceship, self-contained, life support systems on board and you can’t get off once underway.  Now on a boat all the body bits get swept up and dumped overboard, its easy.  But what about in a spaceship or a spacesuit?  Could a stray clump of belly button fluff shut down a spaceship?  I bet NASA know a lot about body bit management and how to stop stray hairs fouling up oxygen generators.  Maybe that was why the first astronauts were all clean shaved before a mission.  The Russians must have cracked the problem early, they sent a hairy monkey on the first flight (Imagine trying to shave a monkey).

Seaplane landing next to boat entering Elfin Cove .Photo Ray Penson
Seaplane landing next to boat entering Elfin Cove .Photo Ray Penson

Anyway, Elfin Cove looks like an interesting place.  Its built on boardwalks around a double cove.  Like Pelican the winter population shrinks to about fifty or sixty hardy souls.  There is a school, post office, store, fuel dock and bar-restaurant.  Holiday homes and fishing lodges are springing up around the cove.  At the moment its buzzing with fishermen.  Tomorrow I may head over to the North side of Cross Sound towards Brady Glacier – weather dependent.  Total voyage distance 1,343.1 miles.

Logged 30th June 2016

ARRIVED PELICAN

Porcupine Cove provided a peaceful night.  The waterfall woke me up a couple of times, I thought it was wind one time and another time thought it was a boat coming alongside.  I think I was sleeping lightly due to all the action yesterday and frustration at not making it to White Sulphur Hot Springs.  By six we were heading out past the breakers and around into Lisianski Strait.  This section of coast is spectacular, wild and rugged and no place to be in bad weather or fog.

Pelican City hall Alaska. Photo Ray Penson
Pelican City hall, Alaska. Photo Ray Penson

The trip up Lisianski Strait was under motor in calm waters.  There was a lone Humpback Whale working along the tideline and a couple of porpoise turned up for a couple of minutes.  What is wrong with porpoise; they just don’t know how to have fun, they are like depressed Dolphins.  I think they need to lighten up and start frolicking a bit more.

By lunchtime we were alongside the dock in Pelican, I have parked just next to the Seaplane dock.  The place looks interesting and a quick trip ashore proved that the inhabitants are very friendly.  A fisherman gave me a beautiful piece of Salmon he had just caught; it will last me for a week.  I pan fried the first piece for a late lunch and am cooking the remainder now as I don’t have a fridge on board – a special cooking technique using an ancient Thai recipe.

 

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Tonight I will try the world famous Roses Bar.  Rose is apparently in her eighties but still makes it behind the bar despite a couple of slips recently.  Total voyage distance 1,324.2 miles.

Logged 28th June 2016