As we continue our move north we enter new to us territory and spend two awesome nights on Wallace Island. Wallace was a major goal for us this trip as we’d been looking forward to it since we read Once Upon an Island by David Conover (which we bought at the Patos lighthouse in June). For those not familiar with it, this is a great read; in the late 40’s a couple moves from Los Angeles and builds a resort from scratch on Wallace Island, a very remote spot (even more so back then) in the Gulf Islands.
A short run of about an hour from Montague Harbor brought us to Conover Cove on Wallace Island. This is one of the two harbors visitors use on Wallace, and this is the one with the dock that we hoped to get on for ease with the hound. Very narrow entrance into Conover, a little nerve wracking, with shallow reefs extending underwater from both sides… and of course we were entering at low tide. However, slow slow speed combined with some good tips from the guidebooks (center left of the slot is where it’s deepest) got us in and onto the dock in the sun. How peaceful.
First exploration was the area right near the dock, which includes the old resort grounds, including the somewhat famous tongue in cheek sign post by the Wallace Island Automobile Club. The resort grounds aren’t as big as they used to be, with most of the cabins gone and a few falling into decay. However, the Conover’s main house still stands, and there is another cabin that has been taken over by signs from passing sailors… we’re already thinking we need to create something to leave here.
The rest of our first day we spent hiking the length of the island up to Chiver’s Point, the very north end of the island. Great hike through some pretty thick growth brought us to the very northern, rocky point of the island. A great spot to have a picnic, relax, and enjoy the views. We also ran into a couple – anchored in Conover Cove with us – who sail out of Bellingham and told us some other spots to investigate in the north Gulf’s, continuing our process of learning about new places every time we, well, go to a new place. The evening on the dock was very pleasant, and we had a fun time chatting with a group out of Nanaimo who gifted us one of their custom Nanaimo Bars, which was just about one of the tastiest things we’d had in a while.
Chiver’s Point (20 secs):
(Use arrows in lower right corner to go full screen if you want)
After avoiding racoon mayhem on the dock, we spent the next day exploring more of the island (including Princess Cove, the other main anchorage), sitting on the ridge looking over the water, and making our “Boundary” sign to hang in the sign cabin. We also continued a good dock experience, talking more with the couple from Bellingham and learning some cool things about the Corinthian Yacht Club which we might consider joining. We also met a couple (crazily, from Boise) who were just coming back from Desolation Sound and gave us a good run down on what that “leap” will be like for us.
A full moon over Conover Cove that night was truly spectacular, and we were very reluctant to leave the next morning, but we were out of pretty much everything — low on power, almost out of water, and in need of a shower.
Coming next, off to Ladysmith, BC on Vancouver Island (dodging traffic in the Trincomali Channel) for our 20th anniversary!