Day 25 - Friday - June 20 - North of Ryan Point to Flewin Point
Moonset on a calm morning from my campsite north of Ryan Point.
I tried doing something different this morning that I began calling my “fast start”. Instead of setting up the stove and making coffee and oatmeal, I just packed a few things in my deck bag like muffins, cliff bars, and nuts that I could eat while I was paddling. This saved me about a half hour every morning, and I did not miss the hot food and drink at all. In addition, instead of getting dressed in dry shore clothes and then changing into paddling clothes later, I just put on my paddling clothes as soon as I got up. This worked particularly well on rainy mornings, as I would have my paddling clothes on when taking down the wet tent and tarp. My shore clothes stayed dry and were more comfortable when I changed into them in the evening.
Heading up the BC coast toward Big Bay.
Launch time today was at 6:30am and I continued paddling north through conditions similar to what I experienced yesterday. The water is very shallow along this coastline and there are many submerged rocks just below the surface. The kelp is thick in many places and sometimes requires a broad detour to avoid becoming stuck in its expansive mats. I crossed Big Bay and paddled past Burnt Cliff and Finlayson Islands.
Lax Kw'alaams at Port Simpson.
As I passed the little settlement of Lax Kw’alaams, and started across the bay of Port Simpson, I could see my destination for the evening come into view near Flewin Point. It was now 12:40pm and I had paddled 18 miles.
Approaching the beach at Flewin Point.
Even though it was still early, I wanted to stop here because after this point, lay the open waters of Portland Inlet. Whenever I had a big open water crossing to make, I always tried to camp nearby so it could be crossed early in the morning. This way I could be across before the winds had a chance to build as the air over the land heats up and creates an onshore breeze.
My campsite at Flewin Point.
The campsite near Flewin Point on the Tsimpsean Peninsula is a nice cobble stone and sand beach that has a tent site up in the trees, so it is usable at even the highest tides of the month. There is even a cascading stream right next to the tent site. Unfortunately, this beach had more trash on it than all the other beaches I had camped on combined. This may have been due to its close proximity to the settlement of Lax Kw’alaams right across the bay.
Wolf prints in the sand.
This evening as I was sitting on the beach in my Crazy Creek chair, filling in my trip log, and having a cup of coffee, something very interesting happened. I heard some noise coming from the trees behind me and as I turned to look, I saw a dear come running out of the woods and straight into the water. The deer then started bounding through the water down the beach staying about 30 feet offshore until it was out of sight. I immediately concluded that no deer would do that unless it was being chased by something. I got out my camera and pepper spray, and waited to see what came next. After about ten minutes with no activity, I decided I must have been wrong about something chasing the deer so I put the camera and spray away and went back to filling in my logbook. As soon as I sat back down a big wolf came running out of the woods straight up to within 20 feet of me. The second he saw me, he spun around and headed right back into the woods where he had come from, possibly more scared of me than I was of him. I did not see the wolf again but I did get some good photos of the footprints he left behind in the sand.