Enough is not a word found on the Captain’s pre-departure checklist, but that was the agreed upon sentiment after a week at the dock running up all the systems on Laysan and provisioning for three months off the grid. Olympia is one of our favorite cities, with marine supplies, a bakery, a craft beer tap room, and a farmers market all within walking distance of the dock. But despite these obvious attractions, eventually it’s just time to go, and today was the day.
One thing I learned, is it is not easy to burp a Diesel engine. Unlike a baby, there is no patting, bouncing, or mini-Heimlich maneuver to get the air out after a coolant exchange. Glug glug, you just can not force feed the recalcitrant fluid until the air bubbles rise to the bleed ports, or it will run hot immediately. Nonetheless, I love engine day almost as much as grease day, and baby Iveco and I came out feeling much better after all.
It was a tight squeeze getting out of the slip, and we had to back down the long fairway steering with the bow thruster; fortunately it was no wind, no current, and most importantly, no touch, my favorite. Then within a couple of hours, we were anchored at Hope Island, a state marine park with hiking tails through old growth forest, and the cruise north has begun. The Pacific High pressure system has moved in early this year for unseasonably warm days (the locals call 70’s warm), and clear views of Mount Ranier, so there is nothing to complain about here.
The plan is to cruise by Seattle next week, and then up to the San Juans and into Canada by early June. Destination is unknown, with the intent to explore beyond the Salish Sea into the Broughton Islands, inching ever closer toward Alaska. We will see.
All the best to our friends and family out there. Be well and stay in touch.
John and Kathleen