Saturday, August 01, 2015

Up the west coast of Nfld.

We had a vicious start to our Nfld. voyage.  I said it was a good weather window and that we should fly across Cabot Strait.  Well we flew, we neglected to pay attention to the fact that there was a 60 % chance of rain, and you guessed it, it rained.  None of this lovely tropical warm rain, oh no, this was a horrid cold driving Maritime downpour. It was not fun standing our watches in the middle of the night soaking wet and cold, ah well, I guess it can't all be fun.  We landed in Port aux Basques, Nfld. and spent two nights at the public dock there.  
We hopped up the coast to Codroy, we were only going to stop there if there was no wind and we got five miles past it and the wind just died.  There was approx. 100 miles to go to the entrance of the Bay of Islands and we didn't want to motor so we did something we very rarely do and we turned around and backtracked and pulled in to the dock there.

I wanted to go to a music festival that I had read about in Port aux Basques and Barry didn't so I headed out to see if I could find it.  As I walked up the hill away from the docks I encountered a wedding which had just finished.  There were four men standing across the road with shotguns in their hands.  A lady went by and she informed me that it was a tradition in Nfld. to have shotgun weddings.  As soon as the bride appeared the men fired off round after round to celebrate the nuptials. What a treat to see this!!! After asking around I found out the music festival was more than walking distance away, so I stuck out my thumb and the nephew of the groom picked me up and went out of his way to take me to where the festival was. 
                         I love the way the actual players blend in with the backdrop. 

 Each act put on three songs and some were great and some were not, there was some great accordion playing and at one point an audience member got up and put on a great exhibition of jigging, that in itself was worth the trip there.  I had to walk a long way before I got a ride on the way home but finally a lady took pity on me. She let me off at a store and told me to ask inside for a ride, I did but no one was going my way, so I started walking again.  Then a guy that had been in the store said he figured he should give me a ride even though he was not going my way and he and his wife and I had a great chat on the way back to the boat. 

The next day we did an overnight sail up to the Bay of Islands.  It was cool but the clouds cleared and the stars were out and we had a nice 10-15 knot soueaster to blow us up the coast.  I was on watch as we approached our port and I rolled in the genoa to slow us down.  The cliffs were huge and very large and foreboding in the dark. I knew the entrance to Little Port should be there but I could not spot it in the dark and sailed circles until the dawn broke.  We wanted to go in to Corner Brook, having heard about it over the years. It just so happened that Barry was talking to a fellow on the docks and he said he was going in to town at noon and was willing to give us a ride. It was a truly scenic trip along the Humber Valley into town, it took at least 45 minutes. 
This was a sign in the Corner Brook museum, this addition of the sporting review was published in 1937, how times have changed. 

We got there and then figured, my gosh how are we going to get back!  We ended up taking a taxi, after the offer of a fellow in a bar to get us a ride fell through, it was $55.00 to get back but the view was well worth the price. 
We visited two more spots in the Bay of Islands before heading up to Bonne Bay, which is located in Gros Morne National Park. A friend of ours suggested that I put some weather and anchorage info on the blog.  I never really wanted to because this is just a personal log but I was trying to learn something about sailing around Nfld and was checking out other blogs and there was a lot of (as Barry puts it, blah, blah, blah) on the blog but not a lot of yatchie info so for our buddy, who shall remain nameless, and any other yatchie who wants the nitty gritty here it is. The rest of you can just ignore the following. 

We are using " The Cruising Guide of Nfld." published by Members of the Cruising Club of America and so far it has been very helpful.
Ports or Anchorages
Port Aux Basques.  47*34.5 N X 59*08' W
No problem tying up at the public dock.  $15/ night, electricity,  extra $5/night. 
Showers, Laundromat $1.00/ per wash or dry,  right at dock, not open in evening.
Groceries, hardware store, bank within close walking distance. 
Codroy  47*52' N X 59*24' W
We tied up at a deteriorated dock on the breakwater because there was no room at the inner dock.  We draw about 6 feet and we only had about 1 and 1/2 feet under keel at low water. No problem though. 
Fresh water available, but you have to walk to get it.  There was no charge to tie up. 
No info on groceries. 
Little Port 49*06'.4N X 58*25'.3 W  located just outside Bay of Islands
Tied up to local dock, no charge, 8 feet at low water at the end of the dock, electricity available
Water at dock but did not use because it was discoloured. 
Toilet available but no showers, no other services close by. 
Good hiking trials very close to dock, lovely spot. 
Woods Island Harbour,  49*06'.1 N X 58*13'.1 W  in Bay of Islands
Great anchorage, almost 360 degree protection, great holding 
No services, but good shore access to some walking trails. 
North Arm Harbour,  49*11'.6 N X 57*58'.7 W in Bay of Islands
Good anchorage, good holding in 9 meters at the end of the bay, probably could have got shallower. 
No services, but it was a five waterfall bay, very quiet
Open from the southwest 
Lomond Cove,  49*27'.9 N X 57*45'.8 W in Bonne Bay, Gros Morne National Park. 
Guide says there was a 60 ft. dock.  It is no longer. 
Anchored in 8m. There is a rocky beach so worried about holding, anchor dragged awhile before catching so we put down our kellet (extra weight we put down chain to shorten scope) for more security. 
Shore access, Nat. Park Campsite here, water, shower, garbage disposal available. Nat. Park Fee should be paid. No groceries or other stores.