Best Laid Plans

May 2, 2022

We had agreed to get up super early (5 am early) and sail home, or back to the Sunshine Coast….except it was raining and we slept in. 

Around 1:00 pm we decided we really needed to go. We knew we’d make it back before dark and the weather looked okay. So we stopped at the fuel dock, loaded up and left Nanaimo bound for Vancouver.

Big winds and waves were what greeted us as soon as we left the protected harbour….at least big for us. They had to be close to a meter and at short intervals. Cue me instantly getting regretting our decision to leave. Mark raised the main with a couple of reefs in to smooth out the ride over the waves.  We also pointed more towards Powell River so the waves weren’t just hitting us constantly on the beam.  We didn’t need the double reef, it wasn’t that windy. After about an hour Mark talked me into putting a touch of genoa out and turning the engine off. Once we shut everything off, I realized we were making the better speed as we were when motoring and everything smoothed out even more.

We made the last minute decision to alter course back down to the Vancouver once we were close to Gibsons instead of stopping over in Keats for the evening. We had a slow downwind sail the rest of the way.  The wind and waves had really died off once we were closer to the City and we had to resort to the motor to get us the rest of the way home.

A good friend pointed out that sailing is a lot like mountain biking. You don’t start out riding the hardest trails, you’ve got to work up to them. I’m happy we turned the engine off and got a good sail in. I suspect in a couple of months, we’re going to consider these to be prime sailing conditions, but for today it felt like we were sailing at the edge of our comfort level.

NM Sailed: 38. Longest so far. 

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