We left Ocean Falls
with the plan to transit Gunboat Passage. We
had avoided that stretch in the past due to
some of the descriptions we had read about
it. Bob Hale said: “piece
of cake”. So we headed for it. Let me tell
you, piece of cake is true. We have done many
more challenging passages (such as Keku Strait’s
Rocky Passage and Piehle Passage on the outside
of Chichagof Island). I’m glad we took
this nice shortcut and here are some photos.
This photo shows us heading towards what I
squeeze point” in Gunboat Passage.
Not such a big deal,
right? The entire passage is very reasonably
done if you have plotted your course, heed
the markers, and look out the window. These
range markers help guide you on the west end.
And now we’re
almost right in the channel.
The best part about Gunboat Passage was the shoreline.
I love taking pictures of the shoreline reflected
in still water at low tide.
Here is my favorite from this stretch.
And a close second.
We bypassed Shearwater
because it was still early in the day. We continued
right out Seaforth Channel and then up Reid
Passage. Since we had good timing for near-slack
at Perceval Narrows, we went through it and
headed for Rescue Bay at the east end of Jackson
That’s where I was able to take a series
of photos that I plan to show in the next navigation
class I teach. Navigation charts often have areas
colored green which mark “cover – uncover” areas.
High tide? You think it’s a lake. Low tide?
It’s exposed. In between? You are aground.
I noticed a small area in Rescue Bay that is
easy to overlook that is a cover – uncover
Here is how it is marked on the chart.
Look at the picture of the chart and note where
our boat is (the green boat icon). Then look
a little ways up and to the right – just
to the left of the “(3)” notation.
The splotch to its left looks black in the photo
but it is green on the chart. That is what I
call: “…don’t go there! water".
This seal clearly knows where it is. The tide
is falling and the seal is hunting for its expected
Look at the following series of photos as I watched
the tide fall.
Oh boy, something to stand on.
A few more interested
Wait for me, Mom!
Just a little more
oomph and you're up.
You deserve a kiss
By this time they
were all bored and took off. Their perch remains
for the next unwary boater.
We left the next
AM and took Jackson Narrows at slack on a low
tide. Pretty skinny passage. Dave did bow watch
and I made the Securite’ call
(warning that we were coming through a blind
corner) and we picked our way through this narrow
A bit narrow and kelpy.
I love Jackson Passage
and snapped this photo at a moment that seemed
almost magical to me.