Victor’s Insider Scoop on Travels to Desolation Sound by Boat …
August 15th, 2009 | top of page

After returning to West Vancouver from New Denver, Elliot and I joined my friend Gerry and his two children on his boat Cheerio and headed out to sea. Our destination: Desolation Sound Provincial Marine Park which most yachtsmen regard as the most beautiful cruising ground in British Columbia, and one of the premier sailing playgrounds in the world.

In fact, every other yacht in Desolation Sound was flying the Stars and Stripes and appeared to be from Washington State. This was Elliot’s and my fifth consecutive year crewing on Cheerio and our second trip to Desolation Sound. Desolation Sound, being about 100 nautical miles north of Vancouver, meant our first port was Secret Cove, a marina and hamlet of cottages along BC’s famous Sunshine Coast. A twenty minute ride on Cheerio’s inflatable (think Zodiac) from Secret Cove is Thormamby Island which has a sandy beach and warm waters. Interestingly, the double-sided beach is cut in half by the rising waters at high tide.

We left Secret Cove the next morning and continued the trip north up the coast to Desolation Sound. After a brief stop in Lund to refuel, top off our water tanks and ice chests, we found ourselves anchored in Tenedos Bay about eight hours after leaving Secret Cove. Like Prideaux Haven where we anchored last year, Tenedos Bay affords boats protected mooring and offers their inhabitants the ability to boat to shore in their inflatables and take a 15 minute hike to Unwin Lake a warm, freshwater lake for swimming.

Route from Vncouver to Desolation Sound

After spending a couple of nights in Tenedos Bay we ventured a further 20 miles deeper into Desolation Sound and anchored at the end of Pendrell Sound which has a wild oyster spatfall monitoring station. We took advantage of the abundant oysters clinging to the shoreline to supplement our dinners.

Fresh oyster from Pendrell Sound

From Pendrell Sound we took on more fuel and supplies in Refuge Cove before heading over to Rebecca Spit Marine Provincial Park on Quadra Island.

Our final day on the boat was spent in the heaviest seas of our trip as a result of an abnormal southwest wind blowing up the Straight of Georgia. After docking in Secret Cove we drove back to West Vancouver ending our adventure where we began it fifteen days earlier.

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