The Inside Passage

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The Ferry ride from Port McNeil to Prince Rupert took 23 hours and covered roughly 274 nautical miles. It was an amazing trip through the inside passage through some of the most beautiful and remote forests on the planet. Made me yearn for a kayak and the time to explore and get to know this area on a more intimate level. Talking with some of the Native people on the boat about their homeland was inspiring and informative. You could spend many life times paddling these countless bays and coves and walking ‘softly’ through these magical forests.
As we past Princess Royal Island I wondered where the closest ‘Spirit’ or Kermode bear was hanging out? A rare white form of the American black bear that lives in these coastal forests. I hope to come back here in the future and paddle these waters and perhaps one day guide wildlife viewing trips in this special and sacred area.
Beside the ferry the white sided Dolphins jumped and swan in their fun and playful manner. They seemed to be heading towards the boat from all directions. We watched as a Sea Lion surfaced for a look at the us as we passed. Was this a Stellars or a Californian Sea Lion I wondered? One of the highlights was seeing two Killer Whales heading towards the boat as they surfaced and flashed their dorsal fins and part of their bodies out of the water.
After a two hour layover in Prince Rupert we left on the same boat for the Queen Charlotte islands. This was a 7 hour passage and roughly 90 nautical miles. The Hecate straight separates the mainland from Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands) and is notorious for its windy and rough waters. Our sailing was relatively uneventful, but we were blessed with some amazing sunshine on the crossing. By the time we reached Skidegate on the southern part of Graham island we were ready to set foot on solid land and begin the next part of our west coast adventure. We had spent 30 hours on the water and covered a whole lot of ocean. We also managed to dry out all of our wet gear on the boat ride and it felt good to be heading out again dry and refreshed. How long things would stay dry was another question?

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