Beaver Harbour was our first destination, southward. This beautiful natural harbour lies east of Port Hardy. It was named after the first steam paddle-wheeler on the NW Pacific coast, owned by the Hudson Bay Company (HBC) and commanded by Captain William Henry McNeill. This area is the site of the HBC Fort Rupert which was built in 1849 to protect the HBC coal mining interests there and was destroyed by fire in 1889. The only thing that remains is a cannon.
We anchored in Patrician Cove with swinging room for only one boat, almost surrounded by rocky outcrops and kelp. The beaches within this cove and as far as you could see around the harbour, glowed white in the sunlight.....midden beaches. A midden beach is an archeological description of mounds of shells and animal bones to mark a prehistoric settlement. In modern terms, a massive dump.
The forest along the coves was full of bird life, lots of different songs and some familiar. The Bald Eagle seemed to be prolific here, swooping past us, gliding onto a nearby branch and calling for his/her partner. The mischievous ravens are always around and here was no exception, giving the eagles a hard time.
We decided to kayak across to the vast golden sandy Storey’s Beach and strolled for a short time around the non native section of Fort Rupert. Large modern dwellings line open grassed areas, quiet and serene. The local people were happy to stop and chat but the carver we were seeking, they were unaware of. Further south in the harbour is a native reserve with several islands in the bay also native owned.
Sighting eel grass and the sandy beach equals crabbing according to a book called “How to catch crabs”, unfortunate title! Stephen laid his crab trap and had a chat to Harry, an elderly First Nation gentleman, who had trapped three gigantic Dungeness. We were cautiously optimistic. Stephen went back the following morning to find he had trapped a Starry Flounder instead of a crab, nevertheless supper was very tasty that evening.
We experienced our first thunder and lightning storm this year whilst in Patrician Cove. According to the First Nations, when you hear the first roll of thunder, it is the Thunderbird flying out to the ocean to capture its chosen prey, the whale. When the thunder rolls back towards you, it is the Thunderbird returning. Lightning, which is rare off Vancouver Island coast, is when the Thunderbird takes the sea serpent with him out to sea which is responsible for creating the lightning.
The weather hiccuped for the next few days, giving us a window to potter to Alert Bay, where we intended to immerse ourselves in First Nation culture.
Alert Bay is situated on Cormorant Island and is renowned for its cultural history museum. The island’s population is largely ‘Namgis (pronounced NOM-gees) family of the Kwakwaka’wakw clan, the site of a First Nation burial ground, ‘Namgis Bighouse, memorial poles (one being the tallest in the world) and the U’mista cultural centre.
First impressions from the boat (and the weather didn’t help) of Alert Bay was not enticing. The high water line was strewn with old wooden wrecks, gnarled logs, kelp and foliage drifting in the currents, half built structures and derelict buildings here and there but further down towards the village, the houses were painted in bright colours. Friends and booklets suggested that Alert Bay was picturesque but we needed the rain to stop to discover this.
Recreational reading is a passion of the Amelie crew and one book picked up in Port Hardy, reported that Alert Bay is famous for more than the cultural aspect. It is written that there are more sightings of Sasquatch in Alert Bay than anywhere on or near Vancouver Island! The Coast Salish word is Sesquac, pronounced “Sess-k-uts. What is a Sasquatch? The Americans call it Bigfoot and elsewhere a Yeti. The being is huge and hairy resembling a mixture of man and ape. The native people of BC say it is a spirit or a ghost or a shapeshifter (transformer) and that is why a Sasquatch has evaded capture. The First Nation people believe that seeing a Sasquatch gives the individual good luck and spiritual strength. The creature is the protector of the land and moves between the spirit world and our world. The being is female in these parts and she is used in stories to make badly behaved children do as they’re told. It is said that she will snatch naughty children into her basket and take them away to her lair to be eaten.
Our experience once ashore was astonishing. The village is serene with a small commercial fishing industry. Recreational fishing and whale watching businesses are here but the town is alive with First Nation culture. We passed a small gathering on a rain drenched beach smoking salmon the traditional way, spreading the filleted salmon on a fan of upright cedar sticks surrounding a wood fire. Along the old boardwalk there are five awakwas (meeting places), each adorned with a colourful carved spiritual being. They represent the five sections of the ‘Namgis people. We passed a broken down old building which turned out to be the former 1949 Anglo British Columbia Packing Company net loft, where the fishermen mended, dried and tidied their Seine nets. This relic is now owned by the ‘Namgis First Nation and despite its condition, is still in use. Towards the end of the boardwalk we came to the U’mista cultural centre. This museum is why we came here. It covers the history of the area and the significance of the “Potlatch”. Potlatch is a word from the Chinook language (jargon) meaning “to give”. This event continues to announce a significant occasion, ie a birth, wedding, appointment of a new chief. The ceremony includes stories, feasts, dancing, singing and gift giving. The dancers wear elaborate headdresses, often carved from wood, woven clothing decorated with copper buttons, depicting spiritual beings. The ceremony in the past was linked to the bounty of food and spiritualism and today nothing has changed. In 1885 the government passed a law to outlaw potlatches, as they suggested the custom was wasteful, immoral and heathen. The government agents and missionaries wanted to “civilise” the people. Mostly this law was ignored particularly because it was difficult to enforce. In 1921, a group of Alert Bay villagers attending a Potlatch on Village Island, were arrested, imprisoned and ceremonial regalia was forcibly removed. Many potlatches went underground to evade imprisonment. In the 1960s the people regained half of their property and displayed them in the present day museum.
In the past people were captured during raiding parties, if returned by ransom monies or retaliatory raids, they were said to have U’mista. The same could be said of the imprisoned in 1921 and the returned collections of artefacts.
Outside the property is the site of St. Michael’s residential school operated by the Anglican Church (closed in 1974) which was demolished in 2015 with a healing/cleansing ceremony conducted by the ‘Namgis people.
Throughout the village there are memories of the past; plain wooden buildings that were used as a Customs Lodge, the Old Nurses’ residence, chapels, inns and the main boat shed with a machine shop nearby. The brightly coloured Nimpkish Hotel now hovering over the waterfront was originally built in 1920 on ‘Namgis First Nation land. The owners were denied a licence to sell beer or run it as a hotel. In 1925 the building was relocated by barge to its present site.
The serenity was palpable as we walked past the ‘Namgis burial grounds. It is not permitted for us to enter the burial grounds as they are sacred. Carved memorial or mortuary poles of different ages, some beautifully painted, others plain and a few lying on the ground. The ‘Namgis like many other First Nation clans believe that nothing lasts forever. “When a pole falls to the earth or something is damaged, it has served its purpose and it is time to let it go back to Mother Earth or make a new one”.
Towering above the village is the world’s tallest Totem Pole. It was originally 173 feet tall, completed in the late 1960s and erected in 1973. It depicts the various families of the Kwakwaka’wakw people. In the winter of 2007 a strong wind blew the top ten feet off. The debris is presented in the U’mista centre.
We fell in love with this populated village. People had time in their day to stop to chat. One particular guy on his bike, stopped for a spell, intrigued by our life on the water. He spoke about his past life as a commercial fisherman, then as a tugboat captain and for 17 years as a BC ferry operator. In his retirement he travels around on his motorbike, collecting his thoughts for his poems and then sets the lyrics to music. His name is James Taylor.
We left Alert Bay with a sense of peace and tranquillity, meandering through the tiny islets into Blackfish Sound to do a spot of salmon fishing. We hooked one notable size fish but it got away.....story of our fishing life this summer. However we sighted four residential Orcas close to Amelie, shallow diving with the male on the outskirts of the pod with his tall dorsal fin. Shortly afterwards several Humpbacks came by, one launching out of the water creating a tsunami across the sound. Spectacular sights that made up for the lack of salmon.
Maple Cove was to be our overnight bay before motoring up Knight Inlet to Glendale Cove hopefully to sight some Grizzly Bears. Stephen once again laid the crab trap with a vast amount of fish heads and skeletal remains in the bait bag. The following morning a huge female had eaten most of the bait and being female was thrown back.
Knight Inlet is a long indent in the BC mainland with majestic mountains decorating our pathway. Glendale Cove and surrounding land is the home of the Da’naxda’wa (pronounced da-Nui-dah) Awaetlatla First Nation Guardians, patrolling and monitoring the Grizzly Bear reserve. Only six small boats can view the bears at one time keeping a distance of 50m from the shore. This is to minimise disturbance and stress on the bears. Alas we didn’t see any bears and being mid August they may have been seeking salmon in the rivers rather than the tidal line sedge.
Ethereal fingers of fog clamoured their way up to the head of the cove in eerie silence. The milky greenish water from a mixture of seawater, fresh water run off from the mountains and reflections of the trees glowed in the pale sunlight, adding to the surreal experience.
Returning along the inlet we had 30kts of wind on the nose and a big fetch for the last hour. Luckily we ducked out of this rough water into the relative calm of Cutter Cove. This was a temporary stop to wait for a favourable current in Chatham Passage. As the light faded we glided smoothly through this beautiful waterway to our overnight anchorage in Matilpi Cove. The only sounds were of the birds roosting and splashes nearby from fish and maybe their predators.
An unhealthy early morning start saw Amelie parting the fog along the way into Johnstone Strait. Our electronic navigation instruments were essential, alerting us to a gigantic cruise liner invisible in the fog blanket. Slowly the ghostly apparition revealed itself and then faded back into the fog. The Marie Celeste comes to mind! Constant lookout for logs strain the eyes and we are both tired by the end of the day.
Another temporary anchorage in Deer Cove on Helmcken Island so we could make the last leg of the passage of the day. We had a hot wind and a brisk sea chop for a robust motor sail to Otter Cove.
There is one thing to say about the skipper, he is persistent, using any opportunity to catch those pesky elusive salmon. Each sailing day we incorporate some time to slow down to fish, reading loads of literature about successful salmon and crab fishing, even going to lengths to wing a text to Debbie’s brother, Dene, for his advice, albeit when we have a glimmer of Wi-Fi. We go where the hardy fishermen go but to date no luck. Stephen has a saying (read in a book) that 90% of the fish are caught by 10% of the fishermen. Obviously they know what they are doing! We continued on south, timing the Seymour Narrows to perfection and arrived in the anchorage in north Gowlland Harbour, just off Quadra Island and across Discovery Passage from Campbell River. The onshore scene had changed from remote wilderness to large properties dotted here and there. The mental impact of rejoining the world after the last few months was weird.
Campbell River is the second largest “city” on Vancouver Island and boasts that it is the salmon fishing capital of the world. It also had a cigar shop and a host of fishing retailers. Unfortunately Campbell River didn’t make an impact on us so we stayed mainly on the Quadra Island side of the passage.
Further up the shore from our anchorage was Quathiaski (Q) Cove, the main island ferry port for Vancouver Island. Here we indulged in fabulous fish and chips, Ling Cod tacos and Island ice cream. The queues for the ferry were eye watering and made us feel glad we had our own means of water transport.
Crabbing proved to be successful in this small bay, close to a large log boom. Stephen trapped two good sized male Dungeness crabs which provided several meals.
We were entertained by a couple of massive male Harbour seals performing aggressive aquatic aerobics. They kept to their own territories, lob-tailing and somersaulting, making huge splashes. This was accompanied by loud grunts and roars. They appeared to be competing with one another and reading up about this behaviour, highlighted this fact. These displays are used to attract receptive females during mating season and to encourage male-male competition. Debbie’s highlight was watching the log boom being tethered, manoeuvred and hauled out of the bay by tug boat. Huge tree trunks are linked together, end to end forming a floating chain which contains the logged trees timbered from the island. The deckhands, minus hard hats, life jackets, safety gear etc hop, skip and jump from the slowly moving tug and run over the logs carrying wire and ropes over one shoulder. The tug boat operator (raftsman) pushes the logs into place and the deckhands use their pike pole to pull them together. They then tether sections of log bundles together using boom sticks and swifter wires. As the daylight diminished it seemed as if the deckhand was placing solar lights on sticks at strategic points on the log boom. We realised later that this was used to alert other craft to be aware of the tow but also for the tugboat operator to visualise if the boom is twisting, when manoeuvring in tight areas. Some of these booms are reported to hold about 10 acres of wood in them. The tugboat tows the boom using rope cables from its stern and slowly towing (log driving) the log raft to the saw and pulp mills in southern BC and the Fraser River.
Once again time to trek south with more attempts at salmon fishing. We may have been in the salmon fishing capital of the world with some new ideas for fishing but to no avail, very frustrating.
The latter part of August, we anchored in different anchorages most nights (apart from revisiting Grace Harbour) and treating ourselves to another sumptuous meal at The Laughing Oyster.
Prior to this we had an overnighter in Mansons Landing on the south side of Cortes Island. Busy with boats, very pretty and a deep anchorage for most of us. However we witnessed a boat go aground on an outgoing tide, precariously tilting over with people standing up to their knees in water near by. We hope the boat re floated without any damage from grounding or from the ingress of the incoming tide.
Tribune Bay on Hornsby Island was a quick overnight stop, with day boaters, fishing vessels and others like us, parked up in a huge pretty bay. The beach is reported to be one of the best in the area, although we never went ashore.
Early the following morning we motored on a favourable current to Kendrick Island close to Gabriola Island where we caught up with Maureen and Doug on “Sophrosyne”. They had some British friends staying with them and we had a great Happy Hour or two. We anchored in Dogfish Bay (locally called) close to the West Vancouver Yacht Club out-station, a beautiful spot where we could watch various vessels hurtle through or come to a grinding halt in the Gabriola Passage, depending on the direction of the fast flowing current.
North east of us was the less visited Valdes Island, a forested, rocky island which has hiking trails. We kayaked to a midden beach where we scrambled up old tree roots to find the woodland trail. We followed the trail through old gnarled trees, towering above us, with their lofty peaks appearing to reach the sun. Shafts of light streamed down, creating shadows and lighting up dense undergrowth. Some felled trees were covered in moss, slowly decaying back to the earth. A deer, surprised by us, ran and jumped along the shore to lengthen its distance from us. We came across wooden farm buildings and structures which were uninhabited, stationary in time. A beautiful small homestead was nestled in a sunny glade with views over Wakes Cove, sadly deteriorating. Many notices were around forbidding us to enter various parts of the forest so we kept on the designated trail. One caution notice alerted us that cougars had been sighted in the area. We hadn’t read about how to deal with a cougar encounter so we remained alert, armed ourselves with thick sticks and made lots of noise through the forest. We did come across fresh paw tracks but they could have been made by a large dog, although we didn’t meet or hear anyone the whole afternoon. We then realised we were heading in the wrong direction for the kayak. Thank goodness for “Maps.me” app, which sent us off through the prickly undergrowth until we met up with our home trail. No cougar sightings although we were spooked a couple of times by unusual noises but that may have been Stephen’s singing!
Later that day we checked our crab trap in a bouncy sea with a strong current and pulled up three good sized male Red Rock Crabs. We were elated, a fine ending to a beautiful day in a gorgeous anchorage.
We decided to take the sporty Gabriola Pass out of the area, swinging around on the west coast of Valdes. The view of the island was very different from the east coast. Vast sheer cliff faces plunging into the sea, many log booms and of course, more of that glorious ancient forest. Valdes was much larger than we had imagined, a great stalking area for Cougars!
The idyllic setting of the area was hindered by great hulks of tankers anchored off the various islets. What were they doing there? What environmental impact do they have on the immediate area? Hideous sight.
Ganges on Saltspring Island was to be our final Canadian anchorage for the summer before we headed off to the San Juan Islands, Washington State, USA for most of September.
Ganges is hard to describe, a bustling town in a chilled state. Rules do not seem to apply here although there are plenty of notices around. Chic tourists mix with the casually dressed cruisers and the local Bohemian people. A fabulous contrast which gently flows throughout the place. Totnes comes to mind but Ganges feels more authentic. As we walked through the town we watched a couple of stonemasons completing a naked mermaid, erecting their homemade scaffolding to reach her. Everywhere we looked there was evidence of the many artists and sculptures that reside here. Home baked goods and local chocolate were available together with gelato shops at either end of the town. Stephen was very happy. Saltspring Island is famous for exceptional goat cheese production and their chutneys are wonderful. Luckily we can buy these products throughout Vancouver Island, Vancouver and parts of NW America. We wandered around the roads, tiny lanes which regurgitated us to another waterfront view. Sadly Ganges has been affected by Covid times along with many other places. Some of the prime positions are empty, coffee shops, bars, restaurants and a bakery, all gone. Despite this the town doesn’t look tired or unkempt, the remaining outlets make a huge effort with keeping the town colourful and bustling. We wandered around the old bookshop, many nooks and crannies, a maze of books, new and used towering above us. A visit to Moby’s pub was a walk down memory lane together with Stephen savouring a chilled Guinness.
A very short motor away from Ganges are the San Juan Islands and we checked into the USA at historical Roche Harbour, one of our favourite “big” towns on the islands. Once again, Stephen headed straight for the ice cream bar and stocked up with a few cigars from the general store. Each evening at sundown the marina “retire the colours”. One by one the Roche Harbour, British and Canadian flags are lowered accompanied by the various anthems. A cannon is fired then the lowering of the “Stars and Stripes” to a rendition of “Taps”. Throughout the huge marina and anchorage, boat horns signal the ending of the ceremony.
We wanted to explore some new places in the San Juans and discovered that we hadn’t visited East Sound on Orcas Island. We found a sweet anchorage in Judd Bay and found out later that they harvest oysters here, although there was little evidence to support this despite bushels of them in the supermarket. The anchorage has excellent holding with several private mooring buoys in the bay. The beach at high tide level and land surrounding the bay are private property so to go ashore we ventured by dinghy across East Sound to the village of Eastsound. What a fabulous surprise! The rustic county dock was nestled close to forest trails and near by the road led us to the hub of the settlement. An elegant, busy village with a reasonably priced, “our type” of supermarket. The food co-operative across the road was a poor cousin of the one in PT. Lots of artisan shops selling ceramics, jewellery, leather goods, clothes and woodwork. A creamery eased Stephen’s ice cream addiction. After four visits to the San Juans, this is by far our favourite “town”, why hadn’t we discovered it before? Once again, we found another gem and we hope to return with our young guests in a couple of weeks time, primarily as the entrance of the sound is renowned for great fishing. The Roots wine bar looks appealing too!
We attended the Saturday Farmers’ market which was great for lunch goodies including an authentic Polynesian stall but sketchy on anything that would interest the Amelie crew. We sauntered on, picking up treats from the gourmet style store, passing a live Jazz band playing in the grounds of a restaurant and back to Amelie. We neglected to explain that this weekend was Labour Day celebrations and the holiday vibe was humming. A local resident explained that in the past, this weekend signified the close of summer together with the children returning to school. Nowadays the summer feel extends way into the fall. The celebrations continued back on Amelie after hauling in a harvest of Red Rock crabs. Stephen spent hours cooking and dressing the crabs but it was worth the fish fiesta we enjoyed for supper, together with pan fried Steelhead Salmon (Debbie’s favourite) and the normal salad extravaganza.
The bay was a haunt of Harbour seals and we witnessed eight adult seals working together to herd fish within their circle. The seals would emerge from the murky depths and it was if a silent signal had been given. One by one they slid beneath the surface and then thousands of fish fry would launch out of the water, creating a wave of food, sounding like a deck of cards being shuffled by a croupier.
We enjoy strolling through the many forest areas on these islands and Eastsound village has a wonderful wooded trail for several kilometres north overlooking Sucia and Matia Islands. We didn’t get that far as the promised rain arrived after many weeks of drought and we were soon damp and cold, returning to the dinghy dock and home.
James Island was on our list of new haunts, with hiking trails and bird wildlife. We arrived for Happy Hour and anchored in sticky mud west of Decatur Head on Decatur Island, with stunning views of Mount Baker on mainland USA. The anchorage fringes a busy ferry route through Thatcher Pass, linking the islands with Anacortes and is a short hop by dinghy to James Island. Kayaking is not an option as the currents in the pass are treacherous and it is recommended to use motor power to transit the pass.
The days have started off fresh with a hint of winter to come. Amelie’s decks are drenched every morning with dew. The winter duvet has replaced the summer one and we are using the cockpit blankets for warmth in the evening to allow us to enjoy the sunsets and the clear, starry night skies. As the day progresses the September sun manages to pump out some hot late summer afternoons. During one of those balmy times we walked the trail on James Island. We soon discovered that this land is managed in places for camping, not your typical crowded British campsite but natural areas, well spaced out with small fire pits together with outstanding views. Close to the forest pitches are wooden structures housing a compost toilet, showers are taken in the sea. Bunkers behind the toilets are full of dried wood for the fire pits, collected from fallen trees. The only way to get to the island is by boat and anything that comes in must be taken out. We couldn’t see any fresh water source so assume that this commodity is brought in too. The trail gave us a workout, steep in parts and quite rugged with exposed tree roots but the views were staggering, walking boots were essential. Some parts of the trail were very close to the cliff edge without a barrier. This only added to the adrenaline rush. The bird life was shy on the island and it was difficult to identify the tiny feathered varieties that we came across. However we didn’t feel bereft as we encounter so much bird wildlife whilst on Amelie; Great Blue Herons have been flying around the anchorages, settling to fish and honking loudly when disturbed, Bald Eagles, Ravens, Oyster Catchers, Gulls, Ducks, Canada Geese and the odd Kingfisher have kept us company in the numerous anchorages that we have been in this summer.
Many people who know us realise we love food. We enjoy catching, choosing fresh ingredients, cooking and eating, it is one of our daily highlights. Over the summer months we have added to our vast repertoire with Stephen mastering thin crust sourdough pizzas laden with our favourite toppings and Debbie making thick, glossy Greek yoghurt and homemade barbecue sauce for her slow cooked pork ribs. We veer away from convenience or processed food, mainly because we find it tasteless, at times inedible and the enjoyment of making a dish from scratch is tasty in itself. We don’t have much spice in our dishes as Stephen has an intolerance to chilli in particular, however we use masses of fresh herbs. The San Juans are fantastic for home grown fresh ingredients and we were spoilt for choice.
Spencer Spit, an anchorage we had visited back in 2016, was our next port of call. It was here checking daily messages, that Jaz informed us that the Queen had died. It felt as if a member of the family had passed and we lowered our ensign to half staff in respect. The following few days, when hearing our accent, we were paid condolences and kind words. The Queen was admired and loved throughout the world making us feel very proud to be British.
Kayaking is the only means for us to get ashore here, so with our walking boots we enjoyed the park wooded trail, which looked as if it was seldom used. We spent several hours walking the circular route, climbing steadily along the way until we could look down on the anchorage and view the vast area of driftwood on the beach. Returning to our kayak we realised the anchorage was going to be uncomfortable so we motored late in the afternoon towards Friday Harbour on San Juan Island. Here we enjoyed wandering around the town, visiting the small farmers market and celebrating our twentieth wedding anniversary at a great seafront venue.
We started to notice that our visibility was hazy and the sun and full moon were bright red. We soon discovered that there were several wild fires on the mainland and Vancouver Island.
Two miles across from Friday Harbour is a pretty anchorage called Park Bay and here we rendezvoused with Jim and Peggy. We spent a great day with them, firstly having lunch on their boat and after Stephen hauled in a harvest of Dungeness crabs, we hosted supper on Amelie. It gave us chance to talk of our future plans and the welcome news that Jim and Peggy were staying in Victoria for several winter months. It’s going to be a fun winter at the dock.
We eventually peeled ourselves from Park Bay and motored to Anacortes to berth in Cap Sante marina, awaiting our four young friends for a long weekend. Chris, Jess, Andrea and Nikko laden with goodies and massive hugs joined us mid evening and the following morning we cast off the lines and went fishing for several hours, ending up in Judd Bay in East Sound. We ate, drank, danced, sang and explored the weekend away. Chris and Stephen caught a good sized Rockfish but alas the salmon were still not biting. All to soon it was time to take the guys back to the dock and wave goodbye with plans for next year. The boat was quiet and we were exhausted but left with many fun memories, including an international rescue by the A team and rediscovering Tom Jones!
The summer was waning but we still had a couple of weeks left and we were keen to visit fresh grounds in the San Juans. Luckily the weather was benign and we found a busy anchorage in Eagle Harbour on Cypress Island. Here we attempted dinghy engine repairs which went well but discovered the main issue was a melted impeller. Hasty ‘phone calls to a Yamaha dealer in PT secured a new one plus new housing. We were helped by a lovely, fun Dutch couple, Nannie and Ben and consequently spent several evenings with them. Nannie has a dry sense of humour and her timing is exemplary so had Debbie in fits of laughter. A kind, active, fun couple who we will catch up with in the future.
Port Townsend was our penultimate port for a professional generator service after heavy use throughout the summer, collecting spares and an Amazon order. Our friends Curtia & Julie and Ginger & Peter live and work in the town so it was great to catch up with them.
We ended the summer with evenings of socialising and bumping into Jim and Peggy again in Friday Harbour.
To summarise, this summer has been a mixture of seeing friends, making new ones, spending time alone and hardly any Wi-Fi coverage.
This summer is what dreams are made of and we are now looking forward to a busy winter in Victoria, Vancouver Island and of course our annual trip back to the UK. The fun has already started.