Winter, Late winter, Spring 2010

I couldn’t resist! I had to throw one shot from our livingroom window on Christmas morning.

We do a lot of work on the Columbia III all winter long, but its mostly low visibility stuff like changing filters, improving navigational electronics and maintenance in the engine room. But I can’t keep the camera still when the boat comes out of the water each spring for its annual painting. Every second year an inspector from Transport Canada comes to see her out of the water as well. As usual, all was found in good order. I am not artist but I tried to take some pictures for unusual angles this year!

The galley on the boat is a very busy place during the summer. Cooking 2-3 meals a day for 10 guests and 4 crew from a small galley for 5 months of the year is a big job and there is a fair amount of wear and tear on the galley. Although it all looked fine, I thought it would look better if we repainted and varnished the galley walls and cupboard doors. This turned into quite the project as first of all EVERYTHING in the galley had to be removed . . . note MESS in salon!!!!

and the doors removed for sanding, painting, restraining and varnishing.

And since we were making such a mess on the road to improvement we decided to add a second stainless steel sink to the existing counter. As the welding had to be done in place, we had to then protect all our new paint and varnish from the harsh reality of welding. Thus the plastic barrier . . . .

But the finish product was perfect! The young welder who did the job was a master, and the professional job was greatly appreciated.

We also had another salon window lose its thermopane seal and that need to be replaced. Breaking out the old window, reinstalling the new one and getting 10 coats of varnish on in our rainy spring weather was a challenge!

Every three years our guides (read our family) need to renew their wilderness first aid certificates. Luckily, our family plus friends formed a large enough group for us to custom hire the First Aid consultants for a course provided at our remote home. The kitchen/living room became the classroom, the Skipper became the Cook, and the foreshore became the practice area.

Here, Fern, is the patient on a cold and rainy day of practice scenarios.

This spring, Alexandra Morton launched her great “Get Out Migration” to raise awareness of the damage fish farms are having on the wild salmon stocks of British Columbia. Alex walked (and boated) from the top of Vancouver Island to the Parliament Buildings in Victoria. 4000 -5000 people joined Alex on her final walk to the seat of B.C.’s government. As our small contribution to Alex’s effort, we carried her ceremoniously on the Columbia III from the Wild Salmon Narrows into Heriot Bay, where hundreds of supportive locals waited for her, including the local First Nation’s elders.

Of course there was more work to do on the boat, including a complete renewal of the mahogany transom.

And finally, as our first tour of the season was drawing near, we had the whole crew “on deck” for a thorough safety briefing and emergency drills session.

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