“reversing rapids” between the main bay and the inner
bay, which could only be explored by dinghy. We
simply watched from our boat as we enjoyed eating
Dungeness crab that we’d harvested in the San Juans
en route to Desolation Sound.
A FAREWELL DINNER
On the way to our last marine park, Rebecca Spit,
fog developed—a lot of it. To ensure our safety, Denis
entered waypoints into the GPS, activated the foghorn,
and slowed way down. I manned the radar, and after one
boat came very close to us, crossing our bow, David and
Summer stood watch outside the pilothouse, peering as
best they could through the murk. Fog is spooky; as you
stare into it, it stares right back at you, telling you nothing.
The sun came out and the fog vanished when we
rounded Rebecca Spit. Where we expected to see many
boats, there were none, and only one appeared after we
anchored. The familiar dinghy ride to the beach gave
the legs a stretch and the camera some unusual shots of
driftwood and rocks, but the scene was very different
from the other times we had anchored here. In previous
years, we’d been in the company of many other boaters
who had come to enjoy the scene across the spit, picnic
on the land, and take snapshots of the anchored boats.
Solitary as it was, that night we savored a delicious meal
of Alaskan halibut cooked in our favorite soy-fish recipe.
The next morning we headed back to Campbell River
for David and Summer’s return flight to San Diego.
Rounding Cape Mudge this time, we spied two
pelicans—a most unusual sight.
At each of the marine parks we had visited on our
“gourmet cruise,” we had enjoyed Mother Nature’s
quiet but stunning spectacle: loons and mergansers
drifting on the water; seagulls protecting their young;
ravens plucking fruit from the trees; summer greens
turning to the reds, golds, oranges of autumn. We had
eaten clams steamed in garlic; cioppino with prawn,
clams, oysters, and mussels; oysters on the half shell;
prawns cooked in garlic and butter; sautéed rockfish;
grilled Alaskan salmon; and delightful halibut. A fresh
glazed blackberry pie and apple crisp had satisfied our
In our logbook, this late-season cruise of nine days and
100 nautical miles on Desolation Sound ranks near the
top of our all-time favorites. The Sound allowed us to
enjoy the bounty of the sea prepared nightly as a gourmet
feast while nature’s beauty played out around us.
We toasted Capt. Vancouver for his discovery.
To view the recipes for the dishes described in this article,
visit the Web Extras for this issue at www.passagemaker.com.
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