Sunday, August 17, 2014

Day 4: Leroy Cove, McTavish Island, and Little Current

Morning in Leroy Cove
Monday, July 14: Leroy Cove to Little Current, with stopover at McTavish Island
We woke to a beautiful morning in Leroy Cove and enjoyed a little coffee and relaxation. We weren't in a huge rush, and the wind had turned south, so we spent some time sunbathing, fishing, and tidying up the boat for our next destination. We had anchored out 3 nights now, and it was about time to go to a marina to plug in for the night. We knew we wanted to head East, so we decided on Little Current as our destination. 

Norm (from the Blue Cottage) had drawn us a map the day before showing us how to get through the narrow channel to the East end of Oak Bay, where we would then head south of the Bay of Islands and through the Waubuno Channel to Little Current.

The navigator on the bow
 The narrow channel to the East end of Oak Bay definitely would have been intimidating without the map. With it, we made it through easily, and found a couple of really nice anchorages on the other side. (We've marked them for future trips) The anchorages on the other side would have been SO MUCH better in the strong West wind we had sat through yesterday, but... every year we learn more. :-)

Good anchorage options on both sides of channel
Heading East through Oak Bay
 The Eastern end of Oak Bay was a beautiful area to cruise through. Very peaceful and glass-flat the entire way. We just couldn't believe the difference from the day before!

Rough water
 Once outside the protection of the surrounding islands though, we were hit with a strong South wind and very choppy seas. We had decided to head through the Bay of Islands to Little Current, and since we were getting so beat up, we pulled out our charts to figure out a place to find shelter for awhile. We located McTavish Island on the chart and it looked like it would offer just enough protection from the South wind. By now, we were in 3 foot constant waves, and we just wanted a break.

Safe harbor at McTavish Island

Taking a break at McTavish Island
 Rounding the corner into McTavish, it was like a completely different universe. The wind died down, and there was barely a ripple in the water. We anchored "boaters beach" style in about 6 ft of water, close to shore. Warm, sunny, and beautiful, we had turned the corner into a private island paradise. Ben explored the shore while I sunbathed and spent time floating in my tube. Ben caught a huge bass while fishing, and sadly (for me) let it go! I was ready with fish seasoning and a pan! Instead we grilled an amazing steak and zucchini lunch.
Rowing over to see how the North Channel waves were
After a few hours, I rowed my tube over to check on the conditions in the channel. It seemed that the wind had died down, so we left our little island for Little Current. We had a smooth cruise through the Waubuno Channel, and easily found the channel leading to Little Current. We debated on where to stay, and decided to just stop at the closest marina, which was Spider Bay. The marina was ok, but we weren't extremely impressed. The docks were pretty rickety, and we were farther from town than I realized. Ben says it's the last time I get to pick where we dock :-)

Soon after docking, we walked to town and grabbed some dinner at Griffin's Fish & Chips (yumm) and then walked across to The Beer Store, where we stocked up on some Waterloo IPA, Guinness, and a few single beers to try. Overall, we had an amazing and very long day!

Docked at Spider Bay Marina, Little Current
Port Departed: Leroy Cove  11am
Stopover: McTavish Island  11:30am-3:30pmPort Arrived: Spider Bay Marina  4:30pm

Weather: Beautiful, warm sunny day, building seas, choppy in open water

What & Where we Ate: Coffee & snacks for breakfast; grilled steak and zucchini for lunch in McTavish, dinner at Griffin's Fish & Chips in Little Current. We split a Whitefish filet and a gigantic serving of poutine

Money Spent: $20 Griffin's, $40 Beer Store, $150 Fuel & Dock at Spider Bay