The sharp chittering of Harry and Sally, the local eagle pair, greeted us as the fleet awoke in Shearwater Monday morning. Todd and Judy of Inception left early to take an extended route through scenic Gumboat Channel on their way to our anchorage of Rescue Bay. The rest of the fleet departed by midday and we made our way up the tree-lined Mathieson Channel. For the next week Mother Goose will be cruising through one of the largest coastal temperate rainforests, the Great Bear Rainforest. The Great Bear Rainforest, a huge track of enacted of Sitka Spruce-Western Hemlock rainforest is critical habitat for wolves, grizzlies, salmon and black bears, including the Kermode or Spirit bears. In 1996, logging companies held licenses to log to 95% of what is now the Great Bear Rainforest. After 20 years of political strife and negotiations, an agreement was reached between environmental organizations, First Nation communities and industry heads; 2.5 million hectares of temperate rainforest would be protected. This historic action is the reason the Great Bear Rainforest remains a southern stronghold for thousands of grizzle bears and spawning ground for 20% of salmon species in the Pacific. As visitors to this astounding place, we offer deep gratitude to those who have worked and continue to work to protect this singular ecosystem.
Captain Jordan expertly guided the fleet through the close quarters of Reid Passage and into our evening anchorage of Rescue Bay. Each boat found a cozy section of the bay and anchored out. Mother Goose and her goslings, however, were not the only occupants of the bay. Eldean and Patos called out some vigorous seal activity close to shore. And upwards of 18 marbled murrlettes were spotted- the large, mossy dough fur branches providing them an excellent nesting habitat. Later that evening, Todd and Judy graciously invited Deception’s crew over for dinner. Thank you, Todd and Judy for the delightful dinner and conversation!