Hotham Island

Hotham Island was our next stop and we had a great windy day. Did a wee bit of sailing but as it happens more often than not, we ended up motoring right into the wind. Had a great view ahead of us with a bit of a storm behind us. Never materialized where we were but we were able to watch it from a distance. Always cool over water.

2014 07 NC Hotham Island en Route sRGB-1002014 07 NC Hotham Island V50 sRGB-101

The anchorage was very peaceful and calm. We were joined by two other boats that we had not seen before and we were in a nice quiet and empty anchorage. The loons were out at sunset and were challenging to capture on the camera. A fun game to watch them and figure out when they will dive and where they will surface again. They can stay underwater for a long time!

2014 07 NC Hotham Island Anchorage sRGB-1

In the morning we climbed into the dink and the motor started right up (yay!). We decided to tour around this area and go to an area called Fox Island that was nearby. We did take the gas can just in case because it would have been a looong way to row back.

We had considered anchoring in the cove but it was a very rocky entrance. The rocks are just far enough below the surface that if the sun is just right you cannot see them. We watched as a power boat oh so slowly navigated around them as they entered. How you really do that is to have one person on the bow and one at the helm. The bow person has to have keen eyes and polarized lenses! A good pair of binoculars can also help.

2014 07 NC Fox Island sRGB-103
As we powered past all the rocks we saw a group of sailboats that had tied up together. In many places in the North Channel, the water is deep enough up to shore that you can tie a line to shore off the back of the boat and an anchor off the front. This way you do not swing and in some cases, you can jump right onto shore. A pretty safe way to anchor if there is bad weather.

2014 07 NC Hotham Island Dragon Fly sRGB2014 07 NC Hotham Island Snake sRGB
Coming back to our anchorage we decided to stop on one of the rocky islands. They look deserted but we say some cool wildlife! That is if you like snakes….ugh. Shawn snuck up on a quail that was hiding in his nest buried in the brush. Thought the poor bird was going to have a heart attack the way he squawked and fluttered out of his hole! Dragonflies are everywhere and we found some awesome blueberries. On many of the more popular islands, the berry bushes have been well picked over. Shawn was thinking we could pick enough for a pie. He is so optimistic! They are just too small. But we picked plenty to eat.
A bird we see a lot of up here is the cormorant. Lots of them. They love the rock and they congregate on the small rock islands. A rather distinctive bird with orange on the front of his face and a black body. They do like a bit like a Dr. Seuss bird in the way that they stand on the rocks.

2014 07 NC Hotham Island Double-Crested Cormorant 1 sRGB

Saw these guys hanging out in Gwynne Bay.

2014 07 NC Gwynne Bay Double-Crested Cormorant A sRGB2014 07 NC Gwynne Bay Double-Crested Cormorants sRGB-107

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