Thursday, May 20, 2010

A Short Cruise With Carol Bee--An Old Friend

17 May 2010 Monday:
I met Carol years ago on Orcas Island after I had retired. We shared a deep spiritual connection. Both of us had lived in Ashrams and been on spiritual journeys for years. She had never been on Shatoosh, so we decided to incorporate a few days together as she traveled south to California. Carol was crew on my maiden voyage of Shakti, my Vashon Tug 23 ft, from Antacortes, WA to Orcas Island in the 80's.

We are off with the ebbing tide by noon. We take a short cruise up the slough to show off all the lovely floating homes and then turn down river. The forecast for the next fews days has lots of rain predicted, however the skies are clear today. How long it will last, we don't know, but we are going for it, anyway. I'm pleased to see the old partially sinking boat garage near Scappoose Bay is gone. Wonder where it went, but glad the eye sore is gone, as it has been tied to log boom dolphins for years.At 1350 hrs we are on the Columbia and slipping along at over 8 k. The river is flatter than I have ever seen it. I turn the helm over to Carol and we hug the Washington shoreline in 35 feet of water.

Its not long a tanker approaches coming up river and, as she passes us, we see she is the Overseas Los Angeles, from Willimgton, Delaware. It is rare to see an American ship in this area. I keep a list of all the ships and their home ports that I see. I tell Carol that I always try to identify the hailing port with their flag before I see the port name on the stern. This way I have learned many foreign flags.  Carol navigates the bow and stern wakes very well by slowing down and heading up into the waves. Then Carol tries her turn at lining up Shatoosh on the next range marker, as we head down river to the entrance of Martin Island/ Slough, our destination. I see just downriver of Martin Bluff that ole boat garage beached. Guess it broke away in a storm in the last several weeks. Now, it will be an eye sore, over on the Oregon shore, probably for several more years.

After docking at 1500 hrs, we explore going ashore, making certain we take advantage of the sunny weather. The meadow is beautiful, with new grass and we explore all the wonderful shapes of logs, the size of some of the cottonwood trees and note several have their inner cores eroded. There is still evidence of the old log boom cables to the trees.

Its as though this cable has gotten so tight around the belly of the tree, that a hole
developed so it could breath. This makes me sad to see, as on the other side
of the tree it is eroded. Cables choking the vital life force out of the tree.

Here is a spooky ole man with a knarled hand covering his jagged mouth. I wonder what stories he has to tell?

How about this alligator? Carol Warren is down in Florida cruising with all the real alligators. She and Jim, her husband, own an Albin 27 and have a wonderful blog. See listed at bottom of blog.

All make for wonderful photos and we ponder about the history.
Check out the link to Columbia River Images below to see what Captain Vancouver/ Lewis and Clarke  said about Martin and Burke Island and their original names. This island's lagoon was first created as they dug it out to get the gravel for the I-5 interstate, then later used it for log boom storage. It is really one of the few safe anchorages on the Washington/Columbia Rriver shoreline. I never tire of this beautiful island and lagoon. Its not long when we hear thunder with ominous black skies, so I head back and batten down the hatches. Carol continues her walk and gets on board just in time for the first of many rain squalls that we will endure.

After a delicious dinner, tea and ginger cookies, Carol checks in on her email. She is making her list of firsts, and doing her email out in a lagoon is probably top on her list. I remember noting it when I bought this computer and used it here in the lagoon. I love the advantages of techology, primarily my netbook and my cell phone. I don't think I could live without them.Thank you Verizon, you are the best. Night falls and it pours all night. We both have leaks in our cabins on 2 windows. I add them to my list of things to do. It is wonderful having my amiga on board.

Days run: 20.8 nm