July PNW Cruise Day 23
Anacortes to West Sound, Orcas Island.

With our weekend guest aboard, Scott Lindberg, we sailed, motored, then sailed across Rosario straits, through Obstruction pass, across the mouth of East Sound, into Harney Channel and finally up into West Sound and into Massacre bay and Skull Island. Along the way, with Mt. Baker always in the background, we came across a fellow STYC boat motor sailing the other way through Harney Channel in their Ericson 39. Alway’s fun to see friends and fellow Yacht club members out on the water.

Scott and I both worked at the summer camp in West Sound, Four Winds * Westward Ho, years ago. Scott for 4 years and myself for one summer. Sailing back through Harney Channel by Blind Island, the Orcas Ferry landing and into West Sound brought back great memories for both of us. Talk of camp, sailing to different islands, Gypsy day, Sparky the seal, Dorade and Carlyn, late night excursions to Sin city or the Lower of East sound. Great stories from both of us. But at one point we both looked up the sound at a small cat boat sailing across the bay, we looked at each other and both said, “do you think Miles is still alive?” “no way, he was way to old back then...”

But as we got closer and closer it sure looked like his cat boat, and his house was still there on it’s pilings. We sailed by as the boat was getting put away, and sure enough, there he was. Looking just as old/young as he had over 12 years ago. Must be something in the air or dungi’s that keeps you going up here.

We sailed by the old camp and discussed the changes we saw, their merit and deficiencies. But we did notice that the lightnings, with motors, I had seen earlier at Jones Island were not present. I guess maybe they have sold the lightnings to some other group and gotten themselves some different boats for camping. Ok, they’re off the hook about the motors on the lightnings rant, but it was odd not seeing the old blue, brown and red lightnings tied up at Four Winds.

With our tour completed we sailed towards the Orcas Island Yacht club reciprocal dock and searched for a good spot to set the crab pot for the night. As we got close we found that the dock was full, time for plan B, Anchoring off Skull Island in Massacre bay just NW of the yacht club. No sense in setting the crab pot here as we’d have to dinghy back later that night to get it, as it’s Saturday and the pot has to be out by midnight. So we sailed over towards Skull island, arguing the entire way about where to set the pot. Watching the depth sound for some sort of change that looked good. “57 feet”, “how about now?” “57 feet”, “how about now?” “57 feet”, “how about now?” “57 feet”, “how about now?” “OK, this is ridiculous.” “How about now?” “56 feet.” Over went the pot, best spot we could find.

Skull Island is a great little spot at the head of West Sound. No nothin’ there. Just a rock with some shrubs, great scenery and good anchorage. Little known to us, it’s also a great crabbing spot. Just 4 hours later we pulled the pot to a limit catch, 5 good sized dungi’s. I didn’t think anything would be at the head of the bay, I really gotta stop thinking.