Day 28 - Monday - June 23 - Cape Fox bad weather layover day.
The Alaska Ferry passing Cape Fox on a windy day.
The National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) had issued a small craft advisory for today, so at 5am it was not surprising to find a hard rain hitting my tent and 15 to 20 mph winds blowing across the infamous Dixon Entrance. As the morning wore on, I stayed prepared to leave quickly if the weather conditions improved enough to get on the water. By afternoon, with the conditions unchanged, it was clear that there would be no paddling today.
The pyramid tent was invaluable during my stay at Cape Fox. It provided shelter from rain and wind and I could sit back, cook meals, and eat while looking out across the endless expanse of the Pacific Ocean. Having a comfortable place to relax turned out to be very important whenever I was storm bound on a beach like this.
I tried to make the most out of this unscheduled day off so out came all the reference material I was carrying. First, I figured out the high and low tides for the following day, using the “Tide Tool” program on my Palm Pilot, and marked them directly on the chart with a Sharpie marker. I then marked my charts with potential campsites along the route and their distance from my present position. The photocopied pages of guidebooks were re-read looking for any bit of information that may be helpful for the next few days of paddling. The “SE Alaska’s Inside Passage” map was probably the most interesting and informative single piece of reading material with me on the trip. It gave me a good overview map of the entire Inside Passage that I would update daily with campsite and route information.
After reading everything with me twice, it became apparent that the decision not to bring a small paperback was a mistake. Weight and space were the major determining factors but I also did not think there would be any time to sit around reading. After experiencing reading withdrawal at Cape Fox, a book was added to my list of supplies to pick up in Ketchikan.