Thursday afternoon, after we provisioned the boat, Andrew drove us down to the boat launch in Point Defiance, waved goodbye and said to call him when we got back. We left…
Pender Harbour – As nice as Princess Louisa Inlet and Chatterbox Falls were, it felt good to be back in civilization with hot showers –
We timed our departure from Chatterbox Falls to catch the first slack tide at Malibu Rapids; once back into Jervis Inlet we enjoyed a leisurely cruise, retracing the 40-mile route as we headed for our end of day destination, Pender Harbour. A lot of the Canadian boaters we met during our Desolation Sound cruise this summer recommended a stay at Pender Harbour, a natural harbor just off of the Strait of Georgia. The harbor has a number of marinas and a few good anchorages to choose from along with a little town, grocery store and several restaurants close by.
By the time we idled into the harbor, although there was plenty of daylight left, it was getting late in the afternoon. We radioed the Madeira Park Public Wharf looking for dockage but got no answer. The closer we got we could see they were rather full so our thoughts were set towards finding a place to anchor for the night, it’s always good to have a back up plan. About that time we saw a guy standing at the end of a dock waving us in, it was the Harbormaster Randy, with good news, he had one last spot available. “Just tie up there, here’s a key for the showers and don’t worry about paying, we’ll catch up tomorrow, I’ve got to get to my sons soccer game.” As nice as Princess Louisa Inlet and Chatterbox Falls were, it felt good to be back in civilization with hot showers and a charming new harbor to explore. Little did we know what awaited us the next day when we headed out to cross the Strait of Georgia on our way to Nanaimo.
One thing we don’t love about the PNW is the “Pay to Shower” system, we’d love it if the marinas would just include a shower charge in the daily rate somehow to cover this service since having to have coins on hand and having to figure each marina’s system (do you put all the coins in at once or do you have to feed the meter as you go) is a real hassle, but better to have a shower available than none at all. Jim won the contest to see who could shower the fastest and use the least amount of Loonies, he usually only feed the meter twice where it took me at least three times.
We stopped to buy a chunk of tuna from this friendly fisherman at the marina (above and below)
We took a dinghy ride at sunset around the harbor and then through a few anchorages and finally settled in for dinner at the Garden Bay Marina and Pub.
The first night we anchored out during our visit to Desolation Sound we visited a boat anchored near us in Grace Harbour (see post), much to our surprise, during our dinghy ride, there she was docked at the owners home in Pender Harbour (above).