Montague to Anacortes

July 8 – Reid Harbor

Montague to Reid Harbor, 24.65 nautical miles
Total this trip to date: 611.5 NM
We had terrible winds last night in Montague Harbour. The wind started mid-afternoon, and by evening we had 15-20 knot winds, frequently gusting to 25-30. The wind came at us from all directions and often the current put our beam to the wind. The current in Montague causes boats to move around more than in an anchorage without current. It didn’t help that a 50-foot sailboat anchored too close to us. We slept lightly.
This morning it was cloudy and we had a bit of rain. It was still windy, maybe 10-15 knots, but the wind moderated by mid-morning. After Jim cleaned out the genset raw water strainer (it had filled up with seaweed and kelp in last night’s wind), we hoisted the anchor at 1045. We traveled through Swanson Channel and crossed Boundary Pass to enter the U.S. We cleared U.S. Customs by phone and anchored in Reid Harbor on Stuart Island.
The Reid Harbor anchorage didn’t have as many boats as we usually see in July. It still seems that there are fewer boats out cruising this year. The clouds disappeared by mid-afternoon and were replaced by blue sky and sun. Reid Harbor is one of our favorites, and we enjoyed relaxing in a quiet, secure harbor. We noticed that the osprey nest we first saw 2 years ago in the top of a scraggy tree is still here, and with ospreys in it. Perhaps babies, but we’re too far away to see for sure.
Approaching Turn Point as we leave BC waters
Not too many boats in Reid Harbor
Osprey in nest on nearby snag
July 9 – Spencer’s Landing, Lopez Island
Reid Harbor to Spencer’s Landing, Lopez Island, 14.6 nautical miles
Total this trip to date: 626.1 NM

The morning in Reid Harbor was glorious…sunny and calm, with wall-to-wall blue sky. We had a leisurely morning, as we waited to leave so that we could go by Limestone Point at the 1300 slack. We hoisted the anchor and left Reid Harbor at 1200, and stopped for a while to look at the ospreys in the nearby nest. We saw two in the nest, and they were chirping at another bird flying over, either another osprey or an eagle…too far away to tell. We heard the chirps of babies, so are pretty sure there were babies, but didn’t actually see any.

There wasn’t much wind, but we rolled a lot as we made our way through the San Juans. Lots of boat traffic created wakes, wakes, and more wakes. We passed the Lopez ferry landing and turned in to Shoal Bay, and the rolling stopped. Sure felt good. We found Spencer’s Landing, a private marina, at the head of the bay. We were invited to tie up there as guests of our friends, Dick and Chris. Chris fixed a wonderful salmon dinner at their house…a nice break from our meals on board…and we enjoyed sharing sea stories.
It was a glassy calm morning in Reid Harbor
Two ospreys in the nest
We tied up at the end of a dock in Spencer’s Landing
July 10 – Anacortes
Spencer’s Landing to Anacortes, 12.67 nautical miles
Total this trip: 638.77 NM
It was overcast with a light southerly breeze this morning at Spencer’s Landing. The slack in Rosario was around 1000, and the current was turning east in Guemes Channel around the same time. We left at 0900, and encountered five of the WSF ferries as we made our way through Thatcher Pass and entered Rosario Strait. Must be the entire fleet that operates in the San Juans for the summer. Actually the ferry wakes were easier to handle than all the boat wakes from yesterday!
As we left Thatcher Pass, we saw lots of sports fishing boats…perhaps there are some fish to be caught there. Rosario had a 5-15 knot SW wind, and a low southerly swell. We came through Guemes Channel quickly, as the current carried us along. As we entered Fidalgo Bay, we saw the tall ship Lady Washington raising sail.
We entered Anacortes Marina and stopped at the fuel dock, then made our way to our slip. We got settled in, and reflected on how much we have enjoyed the past five weeks. It’s always a bit sad when the cruise is over. Tomorrow we’ll start dealing with cleaning up the boat, going through accumulated mail, doing laundry, sorting through provisions, and reorganizing things that we don’t need at hand while we’re at the dock. It’s time for annual exterior maintenance — varnishing the teak and waxing the hull — and we will get started on that in a few days.
Jim putting away mooring lines as we leave Spencer’s Landing
Mt. Baker is prominent from Rosario Strait
Lady Washington raising sail in Fidalgo Bay

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