•    Wind-up Cruise   

    Despite forecasts for soggy weather, we had 5 boats come out to Snug Cove, and of course more by ferry, for a total of 20 attendees at the pot-luck dinner. Four boats came over early on Friday: Free Spirit II, Lady Dane, Hale Pau Hana, and Zelda III. Fortunately Friday wasn’t bad at all, a bit grey and the occasional light drizzle, but nothing to complain too loudly about. Rory and guest crew Richard came over on Saturday on White Feather, and boy did they get rained on! Well, that’s what we buy wet weather gear for, eh?

    Captain Haddock sails for Bowen aboard Hale Pau Hana

    The early birds convened at Doc Morgan’s Pub, which was great to see still open this late in the season. Some of us hadn’t been to Doc Morgan’s for years, because it was only open for a shorter summer season, or at times not open at all. Great to be back, enjoying good food and live entertainment.

    Despite the downpours on Saturday, the crew of Hale Pau Hana braved the torrents and undertook an expedition to the far side of the island, just a convenient bus ride away. We explored “Crayola Beach”, in search of geocaches, and also noticed a number of large buoys just off-shore, which look just like the same that are at Marine Parks. Perhaps some of us might come back here in the summer and try tying up to one or two for a spell. We also explored a fascinating old mine shaft, from over 100 years ago, when prospectors thought there might be enough copper, gold, and other metals here to make a second Britannia Mine. And in the rain forest, boy did it rain! So glad I wore my Wellies! Some paths were white-water torrents! We were some glad to catch the island bus back to Snug Cove and dry out by the fire in the cabin.

    There was plenty of food of course, and some hilarious outfits for the “Religions of the World” theme. Saints and sinners alike enjoyed the food and drink. My “fishes and loaves” (salmon and herring on baguette) was snapped up by hungry believers.

    Manna from Heaven!

    Morning saw Jean and Richard host a simple but scrumptious breakfast for those of us who stayed overnight, and the coffee was much appreciated. A little Christmas shopping at the island shops, then back onto the boats for the return trip, and last cruise of the season for some of us. Alas, there was hardly any wind to speak of, in fact the water were glassy calm at times, but it was DRY, so there was no complaints from the crew. Back at home dock, it’s time to break out the tarps and put our boats to bed, though some of us die-hards will still head out on nice clear winter days. And maybe we might get a Christmas Carol Ships trip together this holiday season?

    Thanks to Bernard and yours truly for the photos: