Our September trip to Desolation Sound was blessed with generally great weather and
relative solitude at most anchorages due to our cruising out of season.  We passed
dozens of boats heading south for home as we steadily made our way north.

After clearing Canadian customs, we tied to a mooring buoy for the night at Bedwell
Harbor on South Pender Island.  Bedwell has gone through big changes since our last
visit as it now sports a high end Moorings Resort.  Pulling up anchor at Bedwell, we
worked our way up Trincomali Channel with an overnight stay at Clam Bay and passed
through Dodd Narrows to Nanaimo.  The light at the Nanaimo Harbor entrance is
pictured below.
Mariposa at anchor in Marks Bay at Nanaimo Harbor.  Nanaimo is a place we enjoy, in
part due to the numerous services available within walking distance of the harbor, but
also because its friendly and clean.  We ended up spending five nights at anchor in hope
of finding a calm day to cross the Strait of Georgia ... we ended up beating into 20 knot
winds anyway.  
Budget Rentals trucks being barged around seems to be a daily event in Nanaimo.
Float planes arrive and depart several times an hour during daylight.  The take off and
landing path is between the Marks Bay anchorage and the marina which can make
crossing over in the dinghy exciting.
This is the standard five o'clock beer can racing crowd at Nanaimo.  After using us and
the other boats in the anchorage as practice markers to sail around, they head off into
Georgia Strait to round one of the buoys.  Afterwards, libations and dinner are hosted at
the finish line which is the "Dinghy Dock Pub".  They clearly have a lot of fun!
Nanaimo Marina and water front.
Looking toward Nanaimo from Newcastle Island across the harbor.  We took a day to
walk around this beautiful and historic park.
One of the BC Ferries in the Georgia Strait heading for Nanaimo.  
JoAnn exploring the Newcastle Island beach at low tide.
Chris - The trails on the island are surrounded be dark forests
with fern undergrowth.  Numerous camp sites are also available.
Chris & JoAnn - This sandstone pillar was cut in the quarry on Newcastle Island for the
mint in San Francisco.  The ship (the Zypher) transporting it and other similar stone
pieces sank before making it out of the islands.  This particular pillar was recovered
from the wreck and brought back to the quarry as a commemorative piece.