August 13, 2010

Sailing Atlin Lake - Day Four (Sloko Island to Teresa Island Campsite) and Day Five (Back to Atlin)

Like some sort of crazy time warp, the morning dawned calm, warm, and still. My dad, who spent a small fortune on a fishing license, took the rod down the inlet and started casting. He figures he spent a dollar a cast, catching breakfast on the last of those casts.

Fishing in the still of the morning.

Taking my dad's catch to be cleaned.

Poached fish for breakfast.
As we packed up camp, Jade and Halia (and I) hiked over to the next bay. There, we watched birds and squirrels and threw rocks into the water.

Later, we took the canoe for a little paddle.  It was our first canoe trip as a whole family.

Mid-morning by the time we were ready to go, I was excited to see that the wind was already picking up.  Finally, we'd get some good sailing in!

See the low-lying rocks in the water?  I wouldn't ever suspect that those were there in higher water.  No wonder Atlin Lake has a reputation for surprises!

The wind teased and taunted, freshening one moment and dying off the next. I motored slowly under sail, hoping to reach an area with a steady breeze. When we found wind I was was always elated, but it would always die off almost as quickly as we found it.

Eventually, the wind died off completely - at least where we were. Looking to the far Eastern side of the lake, I could see large waves and whitecaps. There was nary a ripple of water where we were (where the wind had been blowing in the opposite direction).

We dropped our sails and began motoring, in search of a nice spot for a shore lunch.

Cathedral Mountain.

A look back at the glacier.

Finding a nice bay, we pulled in and feasted on a spaghetti lunch.

While we ate, the wind picked up again and this time it was committed to blowing. Coming from the south, it was perfect for a run up the lake - which is exactly where we wanted to go.

The wind was strong and we made good time, averaging between 10-11 km/h. Fawn took over the helm and I crawled into the V-berth for a little nap with Jade. As the afternoon wore on, the wind got stronger and gustier and the waves larger and larger. Although exciting, it was with some relief when we pulled into the sheltered bay on Teresa Island.

The long, sandy beach was just about perfect with its ample supply of driftwood for cooking in the firebox, shelter from the wind, and lovely evening sum. I cooked dinner with some assistance from Halia.  After supper, it was time for a little exploring.

It was an early start the next morning. I had to get back to Whitehorse for an afternoon meeting. After a very full day, we all crawled into bed.

The next morning was wet and rainy. We packed quickly, planning to eat our breakfast onboard. We had to wake Jade up. For some reason, she woke up several times through the night. It might have been because of this fellow, who we found under the tent near where Jade had been sleeping.

The trip from the bay to Atlin went by quickly, with just enough time for me to eat my breakfast. We unloaded the boat and loaded the van, took the boat out of the water and prepped it for trailering back to Whitehorse.

It's true what they say about Atlin Lake when you ask those who know what you should see. "How much time have you got?" is the appropriate response.

And the appropriate answer to that question isn't "How much time do I need?" The appropriate answer to that question is "Never enough."


Marian said...

Gorgeous scenery, fantastic weather, fun sailing and camping.
Family time....priceless!
Thanks Michael and Fawn. We're going to miss you. Hope to be back soon.

Photo credits: Michael, Fawn and Mom :)

Anonymous said...

The more pictures I see of this part of the country teh more determined I am to come and see it in person one day. Fantastic pictures!

Nancy said...

Oh, how BEAUTIFUL your sailing trip must have been! I'm so jealous!! You must have a new camera? Either that, or your photography skills have greatly improved(lol)

Cathedral Mountain is absolutely gorgeous!!

Can't believe how big the girls got:)

And, LOVE the look of your new blog, Michael!

P.S. That "rock art" someone left was a nice find:)

I'll be baaack(lol)

Meandering Michael said...

Welcome back, Nancy!

used boat sales said...

You have some cute companions on the lake. The place is definitely worth visiting.

Unknown said...

collection by weather shop is brilliant this time. Different types of weather measuring instruments with newly added features and more accuracy is very useful. I would recommend sailors and explorers to try it.

Ryan said...

Hi I'm looking to sail either Tagish or Atlin next year and drag my boat from the lower province for a june trip. Any recommendations for which lake to choose? Seems like Atlin has some big expansive water and great islands and Tagish has some cool fjords and mountain arms. Your photos are awesome.