Posted by Cutwater Boats on Wednesday, September 8th, 2021
Photos and Log Entry by Fraser Clark and Alex Bird
Old Boys on a Boat - An Introduction to the Journey and Crew Aboard MV Peregrine
On August 6, myself (Fraser Clark) and my pal of many years Alex Bird (aka the Capitano, aka The Birdman) will set off from French Creek on Vancouver Island, just north of the ferry landing in Departure Bay, Nanaimo, aboard a Cutwater 30 by the name of Peregrine. We will be on this boat for over five weeks and will explore and document, in writing and photography, a voyage of approximately 1700 nautical miles (3100 km).
Following the Inside Passage along the central and north coast of British Columbia we will weave our way up Discovery Passage and Johnstone Strait, head across Blackfish Sound and through the Broughton Archipelago on to Cape Caution where we will enter into the Great Bear Rainforest region, the largest coastal temperate rainforest in the world, home to countless inlets that snake hundreds of kilometers inland and into the islands of the Kermode (white) Spirit Bear.
Pushing further north we will cross the Hecate Strait and arrive in the ‘islands of the people’, Haida Gwaii. Our focus here will be Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Sites, in which by kayak, dingy and snorkel we hope to seek out and explore the remote bays, inlets, forests, beaches and ancient village sites that make this corner of the world spectacular and special.
Then having visited remote Rose Spit, (where the mythological Haida Raven discovered man on the beach under a clamshell) we will cross Dixon Entrance and skirting the Alaska/Canada border, explore the Khutzeymateen Inlet in search of the coastal Grizzly population that famously inhabit this distant coastal sanctuary.
From here down to Prince Rupert for provisions and then back down the coast retracing our route, eventually arriving back in Vancouver mid-September.
We plan to live off the ocean as much as possible and with salmon and halibut rods, crab and prawn traps and a shovel and pail, along with a will to forage the shorelines, trust we will not go hungry on this bucket list adventure.
It is my intention as a photographer, to record the amazing landscapes, flora and fauna that I know will be presented to us on this voyage of discovery and to produce a book of our experience upon our return.
This is a voyage to the outside and the inside, a journey discovering the spectacular wilderness beauty, the amazing animal and bird diversity, the rich seafood offerings and the challenging currents, tides, and winds of a unique and remote ocean archipelago in our own geographical backyard and at the same time a journey of inward reflection, quietude and serenity amidst the myriad of natural harmonies that these distant waters and forests offer in such abundance. We intend to breathe deeply and carry a long anchor chain.
(Note - Fraser and Alex are currently underway and keeping in contact via Satellite. We will post updates to their journey as we receive them.)
Peregrine is moored on Malcolm Island, North of Johnstone Strait. Yesterday we saw white sided dolphins and close-ups of a Humpback whale in Blackfish Sound. Also had an encounter with Parks BC NGO Contractors when we inadvertently entered an ecologically protected piece of water. All friendly and no issues.
We’re in Bella Bella now, having come up Fitz Hugh Sound this morning. Saw three different Humpback whale sightings. Spent last night in Pruth Bay near Hakai Beach Institute Passage. The largest provincial marine protected area on the BC coast.