|Paddling to where?|
|Land beginning to emerge|
By the time we were getting to the tip of Pakenham Point, we were just beginning to see the opposite side, about 5 miles away, emerging. Off we set, again watched by lots of otters. Once we reached the opposite side, we hauled out on a beach for a quick snack then turned into Esther Passage and made our way to Waterfall Cove.
|Surveying the depth of damp|
|Dressed for dinner|
|Doing the dishes|
Next morning we were headed on down Esther Passage, having a break on the south of Esther Island where we watched the fishing boats starting to head up the bays and rivers for the salmon. The amount and size of salmon that was jumping all around us was quite amazing. We could almost take off our spray decks and have them jumping in! It was no use Ken dropping a line for fishing. Apart from the fact he doesn't catch a lot! the salmon aren't feeding at this time, they are just hell bent on getting up the rivers.
We had another large open crossing to Perry Island, passing little interesting named islands, Egg Rock, Fool Island and Bald Head Chris Island! Once again out in the open, the surrounding views were astonishing. We really could see for miles, all around and even the snowy tops of the highest mountain ranges I have ever seen - fantastic!
|Beautiful clear waters|
Day 7 was a fairly gentle one. The sun was once again out, so much so that at our lunch spot, a bit of sunbathing was done, or in Dave's case a bit of a snooze. This was also where we spotted a large humpback away off near Nellie Juan sound, before it flicked it's fluke and disappeared. We then carried on round Perry Island to Tipping point. Yet another stunning view, yet another large pebbly beach. Time for another swim, this time Elaine and Susan joined Fiona and myself - still no blokes out swimming!
|Beach babe? Ha!|
|Interesting fashion - midge jacket and shorts!|
|Very late evening sun|
Up early, we started off with another 5 mile crossing over to the corner of Culross Island, skipping round the top with a couple of smaller crossings with the conditions getting a bit damper and a bit breezier!
We made it into Whittier and accepted gratefully the offer from a local of a hand up to the campsite with our kit in the back of his truck. Out of all the campsites we had stayed in, the town site was by far the worst! Chemical toilets, fair enough they were clean. No water, fair enough, pipes would freeze, but the site was covered in dog poo!!! Yuck!
Next day, weather foul, we had a whole day to kill in Whittier! I kept my paddling trousers and wellies on - it was that wet! After breakfast, Ken and I wandered back down the road, under the tunnel and back to the kayaks to sort them out, then headed over to the Swiftwater cafe for steaming hot chowder and a beer - heaven!
|Never too cold or wet for ice cream|
That night, Sue and Elaine were sure they heard snuffling and footprints round the tents!!!!
Next day, Levi came back and collected us. Back in Hope we sorted out kit, got it dried, the sun was out again, repacked it, returned everyone's tent sleeves, then had a wander into "town". Again lots of bear prints in the mud and warning notices about a distressed bear and cub in the area but no sightings.
|Hope main street|
|It was a tiring trip!|
Next morning we all piled back in the minibus, back to Anchorage, then back to Scotland!A few lessons learnt. Take pulleys to make hoisting bags easier. Appreciate wild camping sites in Scotland. Speak up, no matter what about navigation.
But WOW! what a great trip we had. Would I go again? - in a flash!