HEGPS - Our Nature Zone

Mix and Mingle => Nature Photography ~ Your Photos & Tips => Topic started by: boonibarb on November 18, 2017, 12:18:15 PM

Title: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 18, 2017, 12:18:15 PM

After Jackie Hildering*s talk on Hornby over a year ago about the Humpback Comeback, my friend kept pestering me to go on a Whale watching trip because she somehow got from me that i really wanted to see Whales.
i wasn*t really into going on a boat with dozens of people oohhing & ahhing & screeching with every sighting, plus i was feeling like not being in just another boat chasing the poor Whales around.

But then i saw THIS Marine Detective post on facebook, & it was game over.
THIS was what i wanted to do.
A beautiful old tug boat, lots of varnished wood, only 5 crew & 12 passengers, Jackie Hildering as our Naturalist, & did i mentions the THREE MEALS A DAY & TWO SNACKS???
i think that was the selling point.
My friend thought i was kidding.
She*d been bugging me & bugging me & now here i was trying to convince HER!

july 23 2017 - trip ad

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4563/38450439286_ceec7ec7b4_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21zJy1o)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 18, 2017, 06:04:21 PM
Day 1!

My friend was doing the driving & would pick me up from my driveway!
i convinced her to go for the first ferry, & to get there EARLY!
i*d been reading all the nightmare tales of people arriving at 6:23 for the 7:30 ferry & still not getting on for some reason.
So she agreed to pick me up at 6:20am.
In october, it is DARK then.
We got down to the ferry in good time & were first in line!
i got out my knitting & knitted under the reading light in the car.
Half an hour later the crew started to arrive, & we found out that on saturdays at this time of year there was no 7:30 ferry!  :lumphammer8
So we were now first in line for the 8am ferry.
We got over to Buckley Bay nice & early & had time to stop on 5th St. in Courtenay so that i could drop off a pair of boots for stretching at the shoe store, & then we headed over to Bigfoot Doughnut shop for a coffee & some Doughnuts!
Because i was drinking milky sweet espresso the whole rest of our drive, i never got hungry enough to eat the doughnuts, as it turned out.

i*d never been further north than Campbell River.
So the rest of this drive was a real adventure, especially since someone else was driving!
i thought of us as driving north, but actually we were heading northwest most of the trip.
The landscape got really interesting!
We were driving through small mountains & it looked all very different than Hornby Island.
We only stopped a couple of times for pee breaks, & it was pouring the whole drive, so unfortunately i wasn*t able to get fotos of the country we were driving through.

There wasn*t much in the way of towns, i think there was only one exit before we arrived at Port McNeill, so we made that our destination for lunch, & that way we were right there ready for the boat boarding time which was at 2pm.

We stopped for lunch, which was another reason i never got my doughnuts eaten.
i was worrying about carrying all my warm coats & rain gear all the way to the boat so wanted some time to put everything on rather than carrying it.
i had a HUGE down man*s hunting coat, down vest, scarf, rain pants & a poncho to fit over my big coat plus rubber boots.
i decided to put all of it on.
& i am glad i did.
We*d had such a beautiful warm fall, but the weather changed just in time for our trip.

So we parked the car & started looking down the dock to see if we could see our boat!
My friend pointed to a big white boat, but from the foto i*d seen i remembered brown & lots of varnish.
i spotted her!
Our first view of our boat, through a rain-spotted car window.
Isn*t she a beauty?
october 14 2017 12:31 - the MV Swell
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4531/38504295461_f38df1074c_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21Euzz8)

We were looking at people, wondering who our shipmates might be.
There was a tiny group under cover at the entryway to the dock, was this them?
Just as we were walking closer to them, more got out of a taxi.
Then we spotted Jackie Hildering so we knew we were heading to the right spot.
She came running over  with a big smile to greet us & gave us both a very enthusiastic hug.
She had to explain to the others why we were getting hugs while they weren*t.

It turned out our crew took all our bags from us so all we had to carry down the dock to the boat was ourselves.
So off we went.
There were only 10 of us passengers, it turns out two had cancelled.

Onto the boat we went & we were given a short tour & a lesson on going to the muster station & putting on life jackets in case that was required.
We were also instructed to shout FIRE, if ever we were to see one.
We were shown the room where we were to be fed & it was explained that our meals would be *plated*, something i have never heard of.
It meant the food would be put on our plate & artfully arranged & decorated, not a buffet.
We were to be fed breakfast lunch & supper, plus a snack later in the morning & afternoon.
i was paying attention to that part.
Then we were shown to our rooms, where our bags were waiting.
Well, my friend & i went in & closed the door & we were bumping noses already!
Our room was only 57 square feet.
Most of that was our bunk beds, then a door led to the toilet & shower.
The bunk room had a small sink.
Holey-moley, what were we to do with our stuff?
There was a narrow cupboard with shelves & we each took three shelves to put our stuff on then our bags went under the bottom bunk.
Our room was the top left one in the foto.
That window was next to the sink.
The door went into the bunk room & there was a port hole in the bathroom.

Next we were called to the galley, is that what they call where you eat?
i think the galley is the kitchen.
Jackie Hildering gave us a little talk about what we were doing & where we were going.
The boat was already underway!
The weather was chucking & blowing & pouring out there & i wanted to escape because i thought i was getting seasick already.
But maybe i was just hot, because i was fine once we got to go outside.

There was a very loose agenda for each day, & things changed based on weather & what us passengers wanted to see.
We had a pretty easy going group.
Here is a map of where we were & what some of the stops were on this day one.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4565/38505391851_57635ba8b1_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21EAcup)

On our way out i spotted this gorgeous painting on a building near the shore.
i had no idea where we were or what this was.
Turns out this was U*mista Cultural Center at Alert Bay.
& the beak on the, i believe? Thunderbird on top is actually 3D & sticks out at right angle to the flat wall.
i*d heard of Alert Bay but i didn*t know it is part of a small island.
We would return to this place another day.

october 14 2017 15:56 - U*mista Cultural Center
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4583/38449784836_610a5688d7_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21zFcsL)

We passed this next spot a few times over the days, a haul out for Sea Lions!

october 14 2017 16:44 - Steller Sea Lions
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4525/24633594308_d63561bf66_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/DwMBnf)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4542/24633608438_c397138dcb_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/DwMFyS)

i was happy to see this Eagle pair!
In a completely different setting than home.
It was wild wind & waves but our boat was heavy & steady, but it was not steady enough for me to get a proper picture of these Eagles!
Barely caught them in the bottom of my foto in their gorgeous water side perch Tree covered in Moss.

october 14 2017 16:45 - Bald Eagle pair

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4541/38510783401_735756409d_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21F4Qda)

We saw much more on this day, as you can see on the itinerary/map of this day, but i didn*t get any fotos other than this.
i think it was too wet & windy for my camera, though i saw others with expensive gear out in the rain.
cali had suggested i put my camera in a zip loc bag so that i could still use it but the lens would still have gotten wet but i wished i*d remembered to bring one to try.
Still, i really enjoyed seeing what we saw, Humpback Whales included!

i don*t remember what we had for supper that night.
i know it was a three course meal, either soup or salad then the main plate, then a gorgeous dessert.
Every plate was a work of art.
& we just sat there & they brought us everything & took everything away again.
There was lots of wine, if you so desired.

i remember being very very tired, but i don*t think i slept a wink the whole night.
It was quite warm & we learned to prop the door open the next day to have the room fresh & cool like we were used to.
i had the top bunk, with a skylight over my head, but there were no stars that night.
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 18, 2017, 06:24:09 PM
Day two & the first time i manage to catch a Humpback Whale with my camera!
october 15 2017 08:48 - Humpback Whale


(More to come)

link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: jeavverhey on November 19, 2017, 04:09:05 AM
What a wonderful opportunity and experience you had! I am very envious and happy for you!
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: sparkie on November 19, 2017, 06:05:32 AM
Great Adventure  for story telling booni.
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: paintnut on November 19, 2017, 06:30:36 AM
Gosh Booni - can't wait for the next installment. 
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 19, 2017, 11:53:00 AM
Okay, Day 2!
This day began with me lying there waiting for my bunk mate to wake up.
She said she usually woke at 6, so when she stirred i knew the long night would be over & i could go get coffee.
i kinda lounged in my bunk while she showered & prepared for the day, then i quickly got dressed so we could go down together for breakfast.
i knew i wouldn*t want to face the crowds alone.
This was a lovely room, where we ate.
There were two heavily varnished wood tables of organic shape with benches on their wall sides & chairs on the open sides.
Two breakfasts were served!
Whoever got there first in the morning pushed the button that made the coffee.
There were always two stainless insulated carafes on the go, also hot water & all sorts of teas, plus two jugs of cold stuff, the cabin boy i*ll call him, for every meal, made a carbonated beverage for us out of teas & juices that was really good.
First breakfast was at 7am.
There were things like yogourt, fresh fruit, granola - a cold breakfast for the early birds.
Also juice.
Me, i was waiting for the hot breakfast at 7:30.
i went straight for the coffee pot & also filled my glass with water so i could guzzle a few of those every morning.

Our chef was a woman from Quebec!
She was really cute.
She*d come out & read the menu to us before bringing it all out to us.
There were only five crew & they all helped with serving us - the chef, the cabin boy was always there, the mate, the Captain & Jackie Hildering all jumped to it & made sure we didn*t move.
It is a pretty small space so i can see why they preferred us to sit still.

Usually while we were still eating the boat headed out.
The Wheelhouse is on the second floor of the boat & has windows facing forward all across the front.
We were welcome to go in there & hang out with the Captain & the mate while we were heading places.
Passengers went in there a lot to get out of the rain & wind & to stay warm.
Me, i put on every layer i brought & just stood out in it all, warm & dry.
i didn*t want to be cooped up with yapping people & i could never see out the windows unless i shoved my way in which i am not good at.
Unfortunately i missed out on a lot of what Jackie or the Captain & Mate would be talking about in there, but it was wonderful to be outside on the decks just looking around.
You could go 360 degrees around the boat on either level, so you could get out of the wind & rain a bit that way.
On the stern of both levels there were outdoor sitting areas with couches & blankets that would have been fabulous during dry weather but on our trip everything was soaked!
i didn*t mind.
Sometimes i just needed to rest & look at the view lounging on the couches & was able to be dry & warm in all my rain gear.
It was a good way to be alone, too.
But people were always checking in on me & asking if i was okay, which was nice.

You can see by the video in the previous post that we were up & at *em & seeing Whales first thing in the morning.
There was an intercom & we would be called when there was something outside for us to see.
Actually, that reminds me, i believe on this day, my friend & i had to be called to breakfast via the intercom in our room, ha ha!
We had hopefully finished our breakfast by the time the heads up came, then we*d all rush out there to see.
Meanwhile the cabin boy & the chef cleaned up the tables so that we could come back in there & hang out any time we liked.
It was warm & dry in there, there were drinks to be had & windows all around & a small shelf of books to be perused.
Two of the other passengers were knitters!
So we showed each other our projects.

Jackie Hildering has an amazing eye & TONS of experience looking for wild life out on the water.
She would direct the Captain & Mate where to go & what to do to best see the wild life without interfering.
The Islands had an amazing current at either end, which seemed to attract feeding action.
The water would really churn in these spots.
i would NOT want to be caught there in a kayak or in a boat without power.
Sometimes they would turn off the engine & we would just float.
In these spots we floated in circles the current was so strong & alive!
Jackie calls it Tide Rip, a perfect description.

Jackie talked non-stop!
Always explaining & educating & answering questions.
She is amazing, so much energy & so inspiring.
i wanted to see Whales & wild life & try my hand at photographing them from a boat, but the big draw for me on this trip, next to three meals a day & two snacks, was learning from Jackie Hildering.

Photographing on this trip was not easy!
You had this huge expanse of water to try to watch, then there would be a spout & before you could lift your camera the Whale had surfaced & gone down again.
So i was really happy to finally get that two second video of a Humpback Whale*s dorsal fin surfacing & disappearing again!
Jackie could see that little dorsal fin at a distance & know just from that who this individual Humpback was!
They have most of them identified by under tail fotos & dorsal fins, & she can just recall off the top of her head who each are.
You can see who we saw in the Day 2 post below.

Jackie taught us to watch the Birds.
i kept hearing a sound that i thought was someone*s cellphone ring tone, but Jackie pointed & it was Birds!
Floating at the surface in pairs.
They were fathers with their chicks!
The fathers were moulting & couldn*t fly.
The chick was making the sweet calling sound that i thought was a ring tone.
The fathers would make this raspy call.
They were always in contact with each other, & stayed in close pairs, too.
i usually heard them esaily, but it was way harder to find the source of the sound.
They were my favourite Birds on this trip.
We heard & saw them almost everywhere.
Now if only i can remember what they are called.
Common Murres, i believe that is who they were.
Anyway, these Birds dive & they herd the small Fish into tight balls as they feed on them.
When the ball gets close to the surface, the Gulls come in!
So you learned to watch for Gulls floating or diving at the surface.
Then if you were lucky, you would see a Humpback lunge feeding.
They plough through the the Fish ball with their huge mouths open, scooping up the tightly balled Fish.
We definitely saw this quite a few times!
But i was never fast enough to catch that with my camera.

october 15 2017 - Day 2
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4560/38525658261_204cddbe7a_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21Go4Zg)

Ooooo, my next video is really good!
So i am going to just post what i have written so far & i will come back & post more when i have time!
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Snookums on November 19, 2017, 12:53:41 PM

Thank you for sharing.

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Cawatcher on November 19, 2017, 07:11:06 PM
Fantastic narrative boon. Thank you f for sharing!
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on November 19, 2017, 08:36:26 PM
Really enjoying your narrative and illustrations, booni!   :eclove
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 20, 2017, 08:35:52 AM
Okay, here*s my successful video!
i think you actually hear me gasping, i am so excited.
You see the spout just fading away, then the Humpback surfaces & dives.
Watch also for the Dolphins spouting & showing us their dorsal fins before they dive again!
Jackie would say, *watch the Dolpins! Watch where they go & they will show you where the Humpbacks are!*
She believes the Dolphins make a b-line for the Humpbacks just to chase them for fun.
Notice the churning water here.
october 15 2017 09:09 - Humpback Whale & Pacific White-sided Dolphins surfacing & diving
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 20, 2017, 09:15:01 AM
Now we have some Orca!
You can hear Jackie talking about what we were seeing, should have kept the video rolling.
october 15 2017 09:19 - Orca surfacing
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 20, 2017, 10:44:36 AM
OOOOOOOOOO!, this one*s not too bad!
i was having more luck just sticking my camera out & taking a video, rather than missing foto ops.
We are in Blackfish Sound, which i recall being fascinated & awed with in Billy Proctor & Alexandra Morton*s book, Heart of the Rainforest..
october 15 2017 09:24 - Orca surfacing
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 20, 2017, 10:44:48 AM
Some fotos now, & an animated gif, hope i can still post those & have them work.

october 15 2017 09:32 - Orca surfacing

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4583/37830126254_40e62ee843_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZCVhy7)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4537/37830104984_144ed2c818_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZCVbeo)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4559/38489798436_8aa1a57d15_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21Ddh7q)

october 15 2017 09:32 - Orca surfacing - animated gif

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4522/38545996341_fdc0a4cc11_o.gif) (https://flic.kr/p/21JbiMP)

link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: ivani on November 20, 2017, 02:55:40 PM
Thanks for sharing Booni. Beautiful photos and videos.  :heart
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 20, 2017, 05:48:50 PM
october 15 2017 09:32 - Orca surfacing

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4542/38514867022_f74f12beef_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21FqL8q)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4553/38514863292_511b4d9abc_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21FqK27)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4516/38514857482_01a6d038fb_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21FqHhW)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4551/37830360934_b20b08816b_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZCWujj)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4517/37830344404_d015fc24a5_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZCWppj)

october 15 2017 09:32 - Orca surfacing - animated gif

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4567/37830351554_68d1540c18_o.gif) (https://flic.kr/p/ZCWrwA)

link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: mishikeenhquay on November 23, 2017, 08:10:43 AM

wow, just wow!  and so wonderful!!
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 27, 2017, 10:58:39 AM
Caught two Orca surfacing!
i left in the scenery this time.
Look at that roiling water they are in!
& you can see their blows, still hanging in the air.
october 15 2017 09:32 - Orca surfacing
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4549/37795233965_4aa8d005dd_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZzQshV)

We pass the famous Orcalab!
Isn*t it nifty?
& look at that roiling water there!
They are right in the thick of the action center here.

october 15 2017 09:38 - Orcalab!
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4531/38683220841_fe9f88c3e9_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/21WiBRt)

People are pointing & excited & i keep missing it with my camera!
i am seeing lots with my eyes, but i see something out of the corner of my eye & my camera gets there too late.
So, again, i try taking a video of the water, hoping i will catch something.
& i do!
Jackie said these were the A34 Matriline of *Resident Orca*.
She puts that title in quotes because none of them are actually *resident*, they all move up & down the coast.
i turned off the sound of the wind on my camera*s mic.

october 15 2017 09:50 - Orca surfacing

Oh, yay!
i managed to get a foto of the lovely Common Murres!  :heart
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4536/37796210525_4c42f3d5f3_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZzVsAa)

i caught a bit of the leaping Pacific White-sided Dolphins!
Look at them go!
i get excited & zoom in & lose the focus at the end.

october 15 2017 09:59 - Pacific White-sided Dolphins
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: jeavverhey on November 28, 2017, 01:49:30 AM
I sure get that about the zooming in - done it too many times to count!  :ohno and then I  lose the opportunity to video as the action moves away  :mconfused :mgritted
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Cawatcher on November 29, 2017, 08:55:48 AM
Wow those  Porposis are soo fast!!! :eceek love seeing the orca base from a different vantage point
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Donnae on November 29, 2017, 06:26:24 PM
These videos are fantastic and I love how you tell the story Booni.... makes me feel like I am there... thank you for sharing this adventure!!!
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on November 29, 2017, 09:26:07 PM
Love to see these Orcas in the wild, booni!  Your stories are so welcome!    :eclove
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on November 30, 2017, 09:03:49 AM

Our first dinner, it was explained that to save doing laundry on the boat, we would each be given one napkin which would be ours for the whole time.
Works for me!
In order to identify our napkins, we were each given our own distinctive napkin ring.
It was Jackie Hildering*s job to hand them out, while we awaited our dinner.
They were all in a wicker basket.
She would reach in & pull one out, then ask who wanted it.
There was a metal Sea Star, a Sea Horse, a Sea Dollar, etc.
i watched as everyone called out to claim theirs, wondering if there would be one that would catch my eye.
She was getting down to the bottom of the basket.
i prepared myself to be brave & shout out & be fast, if one were to my liking.
i was getting a bit desperate.
Finally she pulled out a worn wooden one, yellow with green polka dots.
i surprised myself by yelling quickly.
Jackie turned to me, chuckling, saying *i should have known...*
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: gmadeb3 on November 30, 2017, 03:49:20 PM
This makes me smile  :ecsmile
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Donnae on November 30, 2017, 07:02:44 PM

Me too.... it is so Booni!!!
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on November 30, 2017, 10:16:44 PM
I can picture it happening just the way you described, booni!     :giggle
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Cawatcher on December 01, 2017, 01:23:23 PM
Our very one and only booni  :heart
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: sparkie on December 01, 2017, 04:41:40 PM
Darn Boonie I saw that coming lol
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: jeavverhey on December 02, 2017, 03:23:05 AM
 :thumbup: I love it!  :heart
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on December 02, 2017, 11:03:45 AM

In THIS (http://www.facebook.com/louis.jobidon/videos/10155041521320848/) facebook  video, that i hope you can all see, done by Louis Jobidon of Hornby Island at Heron Rocks, Jackie identifies Loons & Common Murres as the Birds who are diving & congregating the Herring.
So this is what we were seeing from the tugboat, & what was attracting all the Birds & Whales.
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on December 02, 2017, 11:42:08 AM
In this first video, we can see the Pacific White-sided Dolphins coming at the Orca from all sides.
Jackie sees this behaviour a lot.
The passengers are calling the Dolphins brats, & criticizing them for swarming & pestering the poor Orca, but as Jackie explains, who are we to judge Nature when we don*t like what we are seeing.
Nature is perfect, & everything done is for a good reason.
october 15 2017 10:00 - Pacific White-sided Dolphins pestering Orca

Listen, here she is, explaining it much better.
Too bad i stopped the video too early.

october 15 2017 10:01 - Pacific White-sided Dolphins pestering Orca

Oh, yay, here is a Common Murre father with his chick following behind.
i am trying hard to capture footage of these sweet Birds.
i really really want to capture the lovely calls they make to each other!

october 15 2017 10:03 - Common Murre father with chick
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4529/27015433409_c0a0900428_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/Haga9D)

october 15 2017 10:03 - Common Murre father with chick

A very shaky video, i am hoping to catch the calls!
No success.

october 15 2017 10:03 - Common Murre father with chick

i*m not quite sure who is who in this foto, as far as fathers or chicks.

october 15 2017 10:04 - Common Murre fathers with chick
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4567/23926258517_94312f7e81_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/Cshk5z)
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: mishikeenhquay on December 02, 2017, 03:21:44 PM

booni, your story makes me smile!  I can just imagine
all of the things that you are describing!  Gitchi
miigwetch for sharing it all with us!!
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on December 02, 2017, 07:09:23 PM
Very nice to see what you saw, booni!     :thumbup:
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on December 03, 2017, 10:38:34 AM
i managed to catch a Pacific White-sided Dolphin leaping!
october 15 2017 10:02 - Pacific White-sided  Dolphin
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4530/23947521067_2dbbaf5a4b_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/CuaiGg)

Our lovely setting, with a Humpback blow right in the middle of it.

october 15 2017 10:05 - Humpback blow
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4563/23947350537_af2611dd2c_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/Cu9r16)

The water in these fotos that looks so calm is actually upwelling of water from way down below the surface, which is what brings all the feeding activity to this area.

i managed to catch a Humpback surfacing, before they slipped away again.

october 15 2017 10:06 - Humpback pectoral fin
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4539/38781435122_7a0590f925_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/225YZx9)

& a Humpback tail as they dove down!

october 15 2017 10:07 - Humpback sounding
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4545/38781610042_ae3f541bd6_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/225ZTx1)

& an Orca, you can see their saddle patch in this one.

october 15 2017 10:19 - Orca surfacing
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4542/24939970568_2be3a3568b_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/DZRSmy)
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on December 03, 2017, 05:32:17 PM
october 15 2017 10:27 - Orca dorsal fin & saddle patch
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4525/23948463017_886fddc2c3_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/Cuf8GM)

We are told to watch for these gatherings of feeding Gulls.
There is likely a feed ball below them, being corralled by the Common Murres.
You can hear Jackie announcing the arrivals of the other characters, the Orca & the Dolphins.
This is a time it is often that you will see a Humpback lunge feeding.
They lunge themselves through the bait ball with their mouths wide open.
You can hear Jackie announcing as the cast of characters arrive.
i am hoping to catch lunge feeding!
october 15 2017 10:29 - Gulls feeding at a Herring ball

link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on December 05, 2017, 10:38:24 AM
Jackie seemed to know this fella, who is arriving in his boat at Orca Lab.
He has a ladder on board.
Is that for getting from his boat to the shore?  :eceek
i don*t really see a dock here.
& i was sure there were great big glass windows on this building, that i don*t see here.  :puzzled2
october 15 2017 10:33 - fella arriving at Orca Lab
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4540/37967229975_596d4caa3c_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZR2YHn)

i like the roiling water, with the black black fin here.

october 15 2017 10:49 - Orca dorsal fin
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4530/38854692691_29a2a38b8f_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22csssF)

Oooo, caught a blow hole here.

october 15 2017 10:49 - Orca dorsal fins & blow hole
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4539/24981999208_9579b9ac63_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/E4zh1h)

The dorsal fin on the right has some nips out of it that i bet make this individual identifiable.
Jackie says - Even though this is a right side and there is no saddle patch visible, because I know which matriline of Northern Residents we saw, it is very likely A96.
BUT could be A107 as they have very similar shaped dorsal fins. :)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4544/37967502575_a0c33114a8_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZR4nKn)

Ooooo, this is exciting, i have caught the eye patch!
This patch is a bit pinky orange, so perhaps a younger Orca?
i read somewhere that the younger Orca show this colour on their white eye patches because there isn*t as much blubber between their blood system & their outer skin.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4560/27078577509_ec0962e520_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/HfQMG2)
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on December 05, 2017, 10:51:53 AM
Two eye patches!
october 15 2017 10:49 - Orca dorsal fins & eye patches
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4523/38854856061_bed232795e_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22cti2p)

Sneaking out of my picture, but cool anyway.
i must have gone clickety-click-click on the shutter here.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4527/38824003352_379432f87c_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/229KaA9)

The wind must have been from the right.
See the blow still hanging in the air to the left of the blow hole.

october 15 2017 11:03 - Orca dorsal fin
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4545/38824090882_3632c70a35_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/229KBBh)

Ohhhh, this is a nice one, look at the beautiful saddle patch!
i*ve asked Jackie who this one is.
Jackie says - A55 - Echo.

october 15 2017 11:06 - Orca dorsal fin & saddle patch
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4569/38139034954_572038b0b7_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/217dwmb)

Ahhhhh, here are the windows i remembered.
There are sliding wood doors to cover them when no one is there.
& look!
There is a driftwood sign that says Cracroft Point.
& when i was trying to read this zoomed in, i realized there is the fella, behind the sign in a ball cap working in some kind equipment box or cooler.
& a black coat hanging off of the stairs railing.

october 15 2017 11:07 - Orca Lab open
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4569/37967805375_93d0843e66_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/ZR5VL4)

october 15 2017 11:16 - Humpback dorsal fin & one of the sweet Common Murres

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4584/38824340412_c6de197efb_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/229LTMw)
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on December 05, 2017, 10:55:22 PM
That Orca probably is a male (straight up dorsal fin).  Females have a concave-shaped dorsal fin.

Love to see them!    :eclove
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on January 30, 2018, 11:13:42 AM
i dunno if this*ll work for people, but worth a try.
This is a video of the Hanson Island Sea Lion haulout that we kept passing on our boat trip.
Be sure to have your volume on!

Noisy sea lions! Hang out with this colony on their favorite haulout, live from Hanson Island, BC at OrcaLab HQ.
Click here. (https://www.facebook.com/ExploreOrg/videos/10155225606500334/?notif_id=1517337070833495&notif_t=live_video&ref=notif)
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on January 30, 2018, 09:53:07 PM
Grumpy dudes, aren't they!?   :giggle
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 02, 2018, 09:26:35 AM
Okay, i am losing confidence in my photographic ability, so i practice on a Gull bobbing along on top of Kelp!
They have beautiful feathers.
It was nice to see Kelp again, & an abundance of it.
On Hornby, we don*t see it much any more, once in a while pieces washed up on the beach is about it.

october 15 2017 11:23 - Gull on Kelp

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4627/26170835198_639e1cbf0b_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/FSCnww)

Head is diving for something here, notice the water sploosh where the head has disappeared.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4630/40044159881_18848f6673_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/241yMBF)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4770/39145566595_a85941835c_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22Dag8Z)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4741/39145555585_6b30fc6cf1_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22DacSa)

link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 02, 2018, 10:25:28 AM
Okay, we have arrived at an Orca & Humpback hotspot!
i get lots of practice getting fotos here.

october 15 2017 11:44 - Orca dorsal fin

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4765/40044307411_4871b961cf_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/241zxti)

There was lots of action i only caught with my eye, i didn*t get there in time with my camera.
i remember seeing the white underside of a Humpback pectoral fin waving at me for the longest time.
Here i have caught an Orca surfacing to the left & i believe a younger one*s small pectoral fin as they flip sideways to come to the surface.

october 15 2017 11:57 - Orca dorsal fin & pectoral fin

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4708/40044342651_c215ef85ef_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/241zHWT)

Here i thought i*d caught an Orca carrying a Salmon in their mouth!
i showed Jackie & she was quite excited, thinking this was some interesting behaviour, but when i sent her the fotos she decided it was just the bow wave of the Orca.
i have a whole clickety-click series of this time, & there is something dark there in every foto.
To me it looks like more than just a shadow of the wave.

october 15 2017 11:58 - Orca dorsal fin & eye patch

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4609/40011747042_d0d908a557_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/23XGEpC)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4611/25172506857_6571c3d33f_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/EmpFhV)

Two surfacing here, one just showing to the right.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4624/25172527677_9fb800d342_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/EmpMtT)

link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 02, 2018, 10:37:08 AM
Two here, & i asked Jackie about the scratch marks across the dorsal patch on the one out front here.
She said - Normal injuries of life (some are rake marks).
The mature male is “Echo” A55 of the A34 matirline.
He was born in 1990. :)

october 15 2017 12:04 - Orca dorsal fin & eye patches

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4648/39333870564_d2a495e83f_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22VNnm9)

A younger or female Orca here.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4607/39145803875_fb4dec1b4a_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22DbtF2)

Looks like the same one with the rake marks.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4705/39333912984_a046a5216a_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22VNzXw)

Jackie could tell who a lot of these Humpbacks were just by this tiny dorsal fin.
She said they are like noses, & very distinctive.

october 15 2017 12:12 - Humpback dorsal fin

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4609/39333925024_582bf552c4_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22VNDx7)


(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4630/39333983574_83cbee3d9a_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22VNWWA)

Those are barnacles on the tail, & they only grow on Humpbacks!

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4666/39145986465_04323b02ce_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22DcpX8)

link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 02, 2018, 10:41:57 AM
october 15 2017 12:17 - Orca dorsal fin & eye patch

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4722/28265453849_2cb4241fcc_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/K4HQFc)

Looks like a youngster tail to the right!

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4715/39334042894_ab416ac674_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22VPfzm)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4743/40012004052_01cefeabde_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/23XHYNQ)

Gulls showing us where the feed ball is!
We are told to watch these areas.
i would LOVE to catch a Humpback lunge feeding!

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4757/28265508689_ef34d5219b_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/K4J7YH)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4695/39334091244_5a8e0b40e7_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22VPuWY)

link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 03, 2018, 11:35:49 AM
There is a gap of one whole day between the 15 & the 17th, not one foto!
i have to go back to the itinerary/map of that day to remember why.

We anchored the night before off Hanson Island again, but in a different spot.
i keep looking at a map, trying to figure out where we are but i don*t think i really got it til i got home & saw these fabulous itinerary/maps that Jackie made up for us.
october 16 2017
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4617/39164827455_0c88c448dd_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22ERYHM)

Another lovely night, with a fabulous dinner, & getting to bed late.
i think this was the only night that i actually slept.
i usually have a shower before bed, but i didn*t want to waste the water, i didn*t think it was necessary, & yet for some reason i was wide awake every night.
On that night, we had finished our evening late, like 10 pm, which was another reason i couldn*t be bothered to have a shower, it was too late & would mean going to bed with my hair soaking wet.
But on this night i had a shower & slept the best night of the whole trip.
My bunk mate braided my hair for me, another reason i shower, because with the wind & all the clothing my hair just gets matted & tangled, & i need to comb it with conditioner to get out the knots.
Now i felt i could go without a shower the rest of the trip, though i never slept after that night.
Unusual for me.

Anyway, it was lovely to lie in the bunk & listen to the wind & rain & feel the boat rocking away.
The boat is so heavy that she wasn*t much affected by the wind, which is a good thing, because i wouldn*t*ve wanted to be sea sick.
october 16 would have started with a lovely breakfast & the sounds of the minimal crew pulling up anchor & heading us out for out next destination, Alert Bay!
This is a place i had heard of, but i had no idea it was an Island.
It was discovered on this morning that we had a serious steering issue.
Something like the air pressure was gone from what connected the wheelhouse to the engine, so the Captain could no longer change gears from there!
It was necessary to send the Mate down to the engine room to shift gears manually.
& it was necessary for the Captain to be able to talk to the Mate while he was down there.
This was a problem.
The walkie-talkies that they all carried didn*t always work.
i think what finally worked was using their cellphones.
So, a bit of stress for the crew every time we came in to anchor or when we headed out again!
i think they took to anchoring out, even at the docks, as this was easier than trying to come into dock with the limping gear changing issues.
So we were probably taken to the dock in the zodiacs.

i*m pretty sure it was a windy rainy dark day.
We pulled into port & needed our rain gear for the walk to The U*mista cultural center.
It wasn*t that far but i was hot & tired & sweaty by the time we got there.
It was good to take all the layers off & rest for a bit.
Normally the Center is closed on mondays but they opened it just for us, so we had the whole place to ourselves.
We were hosted by a lovely First Nations fella who told us some of their creation & history stories.
i was fascinated!
There was a short movie/documentary about the history of the Potlatch, wonderful!
He then took us on a tour of the place, talking about some of the exhibits.
One exhibit was local children, they had been taken into the storage area where all the artifacts that aren*t on display are stored, & each child picked their favourite & said why, & there was a picture of the artifact & the child with their story.
Jackie, who knew the lovely fella, said - tell them about so & so, now i can*t remember the youngster*s name.
He smiled & told us about this young fella, who had trouble sitting still & they thought he wasn*t interested or paying attention when he chose the doorstop as his favourite treasure.
Now why did you choose that, he was asked.
This still makes me cry.
Because the doorstop holds open the door to all the treasures!, he said.

i think some of our group were losing interest a bit, so we were set free to go through the whole place on our own, but Jackie could see that my bunkmate & i were enthralled with the fella & his stories so we four sat down while he told us some more.
This whole thing was the favourite part of the entire trip for me.
It was wonderful in there.
Our fella finally got called away & we were left to our own devices.
But because we had sat while others were looking, we suddenly didn*t have a lot of time to look around.

This First Nations group are very powerful.
They have stood up for their rights & gotten back an astounding number of their ancient artifacts.
The whole bottom floor was all these reclaimed items.
The building was all wood, shiny wood floors & HUGE logs holding up the ceilings & spanning the length of the room.
The lower floor is like being in a lodge house.
Everyone else had moved on, we*d been brought cookies from the chef for our morning snack, weren*t we lucky?, & they were also checking out the gift shop, so i had the whole room to myself.
Oh, wow, it was so wonderful in there, spending a bit of time with each artifact on display.
i was transported to another time.
i felt rushed, i*d wanted to take some fotos!
We weren*t allowed to take fotos down there, so i just absorbed with my eyes.
i only barely had time to go pee at one point, everyone was leaving, & on the walls were all these lovely carvings.
Two jumped right out at me.
i asked Jackie if this would be possible, to get these back onto the boat.
She said she would make it happen.
i wanted to support this wonderful place, that i hope to get back to one day, but it probably just wouldn*t be the same, full of tourists, we were so lucky to have the whole place to ourselves.
So i bought these two as a thank you & a memory of this morning that took me a long way out of my world.
This one jumped out at me for me.

october 16 2017 - Raven
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4702/40063902441_4e06a228c7_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/243iYoD)

& i got this one for mishi. ♥
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4702/39165201835_04080d41f0_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22ETU1B)

october 16 2017 - Raven & Thunderbird
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4623/39353339424_a1089c9c03_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22Xw9L9)

link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 03, 2018, 12:19:15 PM
i remember scrambling to keep up with Jackie & my bunkmate as we made our way back to the dock & the zodiac taking us back to the boat for our lunch.
Again, i was glad to sit & have a rest.

The rest of our trip was up in the air!
They were talking about using another boat to take us through the rest of our days.
Our boat was kinda dead in the water.
So we decided to go with the flow & spend the afternoon at Alert Bay while the boat was figured out.

It was decided that we would walk to Cormorant Island Ecological Park, just up the hill from the dock.
It was a marsh, with a wooden boardwalk, there were likely to be Birds!
A fire had gone through the place & most of the Trees were burned.
i was feeling a bit whooped, i debated staying back & just resting on the lovely boat, knitting or reading.
But i went.
It was a steep uphill climb & i was at the back of the group!
The lovely cabin boy had the job of keeping up the tail, so he spent a lot of time with me.
He is a twin!
& he & his twin live nearby to Hornby Island.
So we talked about that & his schooling & his work, & i tried to hide how out of breath i was.
It was pouring & pouring, i had all my layers on for warmth & keeping dry, i was hot & tired & my glasses were wet & fogged up.
i wished i*d stayed behind.
But i will always remember the beautiful walk that day.

When we got back to the dock, the C3/Polar Prince was there, & everyone but me was thrilled that we were offered a tour.
i just wanted to go home.
i*d never heard of this venture, but this boat had left the east coast & gone north around the continent & then south to Victoria, stopping along the way to visit & pick up people & share/hear stories about reconciliation with the First Nations people.
You can look it up to get more info.
A lot of sad stories had been heard on this boat.
i hope it did some good on its journey.
i guess they*d been posting on facebook & people were following.
It was a huge red & white ice breaker, there was a lot of going up & down stairs & into rooms.
i was glad when it was done & we could go back to our boat.
i was tired & hot & cranky & my leg had been hurting me all day.
It was so good to sit in our dining room & just zone out & knit until supper.

We cruised back to where we*d started, Port McNeil, in the hope that an older fella who knew a lot about repairing engines who lived there would be able to help us.
Once again we anchored offshore.
We saw the fella peering in the windows at one point, as they went to have a look.
But he wasn*t able to solve our problem.
It was decided that we would carry on as we were!
We had a good group of people, we all just went with the flow.
It was good to know our voyage would continue.
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on February 03, 2018, 08:10:32 PM
These are wonderful stories, booni!  Please keep 'em coming!  Your Raven and the Thunderbird are very nice.  Mishi will "luv, luv, luv" them!   :heart

I remember having some adventures in Sitka, Alaska, that were special, too.  The Tinglit People were our hosts.
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 04, 2018, 11:57:44 AM
Our last full day!
& we are off early from our off-shore evening in Port McNeil, limping boat going strong.
There was a beautiful Moon rise in the foggy dark when we gathered for breakfast.
Today we are off to Echo Bay & to meet with the wonderful Billy Proctor!  :heart
& we have a ways to go for our appointment with him.
october 17 & 18 2017
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4649/39372242434_e6db4d7613_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22Zc2Y7)

On our map/itinerary, Jackie says we had stunning light & blows everywhere!
Well, i caught some of the stunning light at least.

october 17 2017 09:05 - morning view
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4754/28302810679_e7b4eeb62d_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/K82iyt)

We actually had some Sun this morning & i think it was even warm when you were out in it out of the Wind.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4716/39184645915_6f00ae7ed7_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22GBy4n)

But there is also very low & very DARK cloud we are heading into!
& you can see how rough the Seas are.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4750/28303095219_97f77954dc_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/K83L9k)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4610/40083775211_35bdee98c2_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/2454PSB)
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 04, 2018, 12:03:46 PM
october 17 2017 09:27 - morning view
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4759/26209820058_d10f04c711_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/FW5bnh)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4627/40083881401_bec3e5b641_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/2455nrt)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4740/28303209989_36d238aa4e_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/K84mg8)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4758/39185004065_4b1dcfc725_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22GDown)

This is my first view of one of these!
There is a protest sign hanging on the fence.

october 17 2017 09:52 - fish farm - boooo-hissssss
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4663/40051038142_8dfc7b40ec_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/242b3ho)

Beautiful Long House.
Not sure i am calling this the correct words.
Those look like Humpback Whales!
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4694/28303289049_048986357f_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/K84KLe)
link to my fotos page - 
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 04, 2018, 12:12:29 PM
There is a break after those last fotos because we motored through a huge hail storm!
i sat out in it for a bit but then had to put my camera away to dry it out.

We made our 11:00am appointment with Billy Proctor!
He comes down out of his warm house to host us in his full-of-wonders museum!
What a lovely fella!
My heart goes right out to him.
Read his & Alexandra Morton*s book about his life, Heart of the Rainforest.
He is a true hero, as is she.
People are in there yibber-yabbering & looking around but i feel like being outside!
& here i am, back in my comfort zone, photographing Birds!
No one else has noticed this Red-tailed Hawk, but for me, seeing one is a thrill!
They are air drying after the fog & rain we had.
When Jackie, who is good buddies with Billy, pointed this Bird out, Billy figured they were after the chickens!

This is the off season, & Billy has opened up just for us!
He also has a book/gift shop, & accepts donations towards studying/enhancing the Salmon Rivers, so i stuff a few twenties in his box when he isn*t looking.
october 17 2017 11:15 - Red-tailed Hawk

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4724/39372922754_02fa3f8ec8_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22ZfwcL)

i am very close to this Bird, & of course i am spotted.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4749/39185410615_f15c3db53f_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22GFtnR)

Nictitating membrane here.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4669/40051368922_cc387d444e_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/242cJBu)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4629/40084202551_dd06f3887d_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/24571Ux)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4715/25212093637_d4d2235cf7_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/EpUz4B)

& this beautiful Sparrow, against the fabulous green of the Cedar.

october 17 2017 11:52 - Sparrow
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4629/39185509645_8cb2fb8b35_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22GFYPg)
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Donnae on February 04, 2018, 09:00:06 PM
What a wonderful adventure.. something great at every turn. I am green with envy but feel like I am right there because of your wonderful descriptions!!! Thanks so much for posting this story.
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on February 04, 2018, 09:20:55 PM
It feels as if you are here with us, describing your adventures.   :nod2

I just got the Kindle (on Amazon.com) version of the book, Heart of the Rainforest, based on your recommendation, booni.     :eclove
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: jeavverhey on February 05, 2018, 04:42:11 AM
Although I would have loved the opportunity to go on that excursion, I got far more out of it because of your detailed descriptions a d observations, along with you marvellous photos. Thank you for sharing it with all of us.  :eclove
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 06, 2018, 10:42:28 AM
Tiger, i hope you enjoy that book as much as i did!
i learned a LOT.

& here he is!
Isn*t he a cutie-pie?
i just love him.
You can see many of the kinds of things he has in his museum behind & around him in this picture.
You could spend hours in there looking & not see them all.
Everything is tidily arranged & somehow, magically, not even dusty!
& of course he has a story for every one!
& then he shows you his favourite one.
Now, darn, i can*t remember what that was.
It was something little, some kind of stone i think.
He has tons of First Nations artifacts & fossils.
i think you*re even allowed to touch stuff, but i keep my hands behind my back & just look.
He has some old magazines on a table in the back, & he tells the story of a fella seeing an article in there that is about a member of his family & how it made him cry.

Jackie has been telling us how we have to get him talking, & my bunk mate is very good at engaging & enjoying him, as is Jackie.
It doesn*t take much to get him going.

You can see one of the crew brought him some Salmon in a zip lock bag.

This picture of all the ones i got, captures him the best.
i am trying to sneak pictures of him, but good luck with that.

To his left is a drone he found on the beach, he thought that was really something indicative of the day & age, & the guest sign in book.

october 17 2017 12:09 -  Billy Proctor! ♥

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4745/40069785612_80abd3fcdf_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/243Q8fC)

He had a cold, & wasn*t feeling well, but came down to visit with us anyway.
He likes the company in the off season.
He*s wearing jeans that are hanging off him, held up by suspenders, & rubber boots.
He is kinda shy, he looks at his lap a lot, but he doesn*t miss anything with those sharp eyes & mind of his!
He is a good susser of people.
Jackie loves him, & tries to get him telling stories.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4626/28321982259_1709f43cc8_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/K9HyAX)

He has his own boat, & there it is tied to the rickety dock just down the hill.
He is known for heading out in his boat to get supplies in Port McNeil, & he gets supplies for anyone else at the same time.
He says he never goes in someone else*s boat!
Only his own.
& he still does his own work on his boat to maintain it.
He was born in 1934, so he is 83 years old!
There is a lovely black & white foto of him as a child with his Mum, heart-wrenching when you read the book.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4743/26228628468_1cdc7e877f_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/FXJzsd)

Just out to the left from his property on the point is Pierre*s at Echo Bay, Lodge & Marina, pig roast every saturday night (in the summer i assume).
It attracts rich yachties, who *have more money than sense*, they follow each other around the area in their expensive boats & this is the place that collects them.
Billy tells the story of a fella who came to his museum & asked if he could look at Billy*s property.
Of course you can, he said, go ahead.
After his look around, the fella says he wants to buy the place, what is Billy*s price.
Billy*s not liking this fella*s attitude.
The place isn*t for sale! he says.
The rich fella says - everything is for sale, name your price.
Billy tells him there is not a price the place is not for sale.
i will give you lots of money for this place! the fella says.
Billy gives him the what for - i don*t want money, i don*t have money, i never had money & i don*t want your money now get the heck out of here!
Ha ha ha, i can just see it.

i*m sneaking pictures of him using Jackie as a blind & a frame.  :mhihi
He*s not fooled.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4668/40102843491_cdffb0b674_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/246Kyd4)
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4766/26228605618_b9528105d1_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/FXJsEf)

There is a mock up of the cabin he used to live in, or maybe it actually was his cabin, a very basic small room with a woodstove.
He lives in a more comfy warm place now, & there are people there who work with him, keeping an eye on him & the place.
But he still splits his own wood!
He is 83!
He LOVES splitting wood, it is his favourite thing to do.
& his woodshed is full.

We are heading out this afternoon to a Salmon spawning river, hoping to see Eagles & Bears.
But he shakes his head sadly.
There are very few Salmon spawning in the Rivers now.
He doesn*t like these fish farms everywhere, & for good reason.
(Read the book!)

As we are leaving i thank him & pat his arm & he turns to accept a hug but i am not ready, that isn*t what i was planning, but now i wish i*d hugged him!
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on February 06, 2018, 09:22:16 PM
booni, your description of Billy brings tears to my eyes...good tears.    :heart

I'm looking forward to reading the book soon...after I finish the current one.   :nod2
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 07, 2018, 10:42:33 AM
We were taken back to our boat where we had a late lunch while we headed to our next destination, Viner Sound.
If we were lucky, there would be spawned Salmon, attracting Eagles & Bears.
There is a bit of Sun, or at least light, & the scenery is gorgeous.
i think this is looking back from where we came, & we must be anchored already.
It is already late in the afternoon, yet there is still lots of light.
i guess this was before the clocks went back an hour.
october 17 2017 16:47 - Viner Sound
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4750/26263769808_7d2a8462f2_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/G1QFKo)

Here*s what this area looks like from the air.
We came from the left & our destination is that marshy/swampy/muddy area to the right.
i remember the water being orangey-brown, from all the silt washed down the River with all the rain we had.
We aren*t wanting to get the tug boat in there too close, as it gets shallow of course, & the tide is going out.
So we are headed to the muddy area in the two zodiacs.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4603/26263865628_900693d8f0_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/G1Rbes)

Straight ahead is where we are heading.
Not seeing any Bears or even Eagles, but i remember seeing little Gulls, were they Bonaparte*s?
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4719/26263899658_088c1bd459_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/G1Rmmb)

i must be getting tired, i remember feeling scared about going ashore & meeting Bears.
They have Bear spray, & we are instructed on how to behave if we see one.
i also dread getting in & out of the zodiacs, having to step in & down on the water with everyone watching, but the crew are super helpful & they learn quickly who would like helping arms getting in & out.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4719/26263899658_088c1bd459_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/G1Rmmb)

There*s a red zodiac & a white zodiac, & it feels like the cool/agile people go in one & the old fogies go in the other
i am disappointed to see Jackie heading off with the cool agile people.
But thanks to that we get to know our mate a bit better!
He is a super photographer & you can find his webpage here. (http://www.wildisle.ca/photography/)
Or go to his facebook page, where you can spend hours going through his albums of fotos, many from these Maple Leaf Adventures trips here. (https://www.facebook.com/PhilipStonePhotography/)
You never know what the weather will be, so i have on my big down coat & my rain poncho, the life jacket overtop of all, with my hoodie up.
i have my camera, but am somehow reluctant to get it out.
i just enjoy the view.
We see the other zodiac beached, & watch the cool people trucking through mud up to their knees, & i am glad i am not with them.
i, with all my layers of clothing on, would have wanted to just stay in the zodiac & watch, & the Bear would have come for me there for sure.
If there is a Bear, i will be happy with seeing one from my boat out on the water here.
The tide is falling, the bottom is very muddy, we are trying to get as close to the shore where the River comes out as possible.
We are still not seeing much except the Gulls.
i am enjoying their sounds, & many are bathing in the fresh water coming off the River.
i think they were also nabbing Salmon roe, if i recall correctly.
Suddenly the engine is spinning & we are going nowhere.
You can hear the prop churning the mud.
We are stuck in the mud with the tide going out!
The mate hops out in his rubber boots & instantly the water is overtop of them & into his boots.
He is manually shoving us around & off the mud, not one bit bothered that we are stuck & he is half under water/mud.
He climbs back in but we are still stuck in the mud.
Eventually we get free & move farther out.
We see the muddy others getting back into their zodiac from the shore.
One of the women has fallen into the mud & is covered from head to toe.
& i forgot to mention the smell, the mud has a very strong smell.
Finally we are seeing Eagles.
i believe spawned Salmon are appearing as the tide goes out, they are sitting on the muddy bottom.
We see Eagles of all ages on the ground in the mud, & in the Trees far off towards land where we can*t go.
i don*t get my camera out.
There is one adult Eagle, standing in the mud.
We watch them walking, mud up to their belly, feet big clods of mud.
This is far away but i am wishing i could get fotos of that.
i am holding the boat with one hand & just enjoying the view.
i spot a few interesting Birds & point them out to Phil - a Kingfisher, a spawing Salmon, swimming close to the shore, a Merlin who goes after one of the Gulls!
i leave it to him to get fotos of all these.
i finally pull out my camera when there is an Eagle nearby on the shore eating a huge spawned Salmon, but i only use the auto settings & it is dark & i only get blurry fotos.
That is a big Salmon!
Other Eagles compete for anything that is found.
One Eagle is eating their find in a Tree.
Others fly by with chunks.
There are more Eagles the lower the tide gets.
(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4618/39425871794_c7301a362d_b.jpg) (http://october 17 2017 17:00 - Eagle & spawned Salmon)

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4711/39238678725_38bbd7c865_b.jpg) (https://flic.kr/p/22Mou8x)

It is getting late, & dark, & it is time to get back to the Tugboat.
Home sweet home, & i am glad to get back there alive, ha ha ha.
link to my fotos page -  
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/ (https://www.flickr.com/photos/43214021@N08/)
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 07, 2018, 11:34:20 AM

Supper is late that night.
We are all hanging out in the dining room, relaxing.
The five crew appear & they are all in their best clothes!
An iron is brought out, & it is looking like tablecloths will be ironed!
It is our last night, & they are pulling out all the stops.
It is hinted that we are in the way so we all scurry back to our rooms.
Me, i have nothing to change into.
i only brought the one outfit.
i chose my tie die leggings & hoodie, ha ha ha, but it was a good choice.
We get into our bunks & just relax.
i am paging through the fotos on my camera, passing the camera down to my bunk mate to see.
Suddenly... BOOM!
THAT*s not good, i say!
We have hit something!
We are gonna be like the Titanic & sink!
i am looking out our square window & suddenly the boat tips to starboard & i am looking straight down at the water getting closer & closer to our window!
There is this loud booming scraping sound the whole time.
i*m going whoa! whoa! whoa! & clinging to the short frame of the bunk bed.
i*m not sure why i wasn*t tipped right out, we are over that far.
Suddenly we are free & the boat tips just as far to the port side, then back again, finally settling.
There is dead silence.
We all have intercoms in our rooms.
Last time i heard something coming out of there it was Jackie calling my bunk mate & i to breakfast the first day, we were late.
Now we hear - everyone to muster station please.
This was one of the first things we were instructed on in our first hour on the boat.
We look at each other.
What do you grab?
We are going down!
So i take money & my i.d. cards like i should?
i put on all my warm clothes & stuff my camera down the front of my coat & zip it up.
i do NOT want to lose my fotos.
We are one of the last ones to arrive.
My heart is pounding & my eyes are wide.
We are all putting our life jackets back on.
The crew are very calm.
They already have figured out that the propeller in undamaged.
They are unscrewing the wooden lid to go down into the engine room.
i am sure we are filling up with water, remembering the Titanic.
They are getting ready to load us into the life boats.
i mean the zodiacs.
After what seems like a long time, we are given the all clear.
We*re not sinking.
i walk around looking down at the water & sides of the boat.
There is water shooting out the side, near the bottom, the bilge pump?
i don*t remember so much water coming out before.
Are we taking on water?

While we wait for dinner, people head out in the zodiacs to fish, like nothing has happened.
It is already dark!
But on this boat if there is something we want to do, they provide it.

We hear the kitchen is a shambles, stuff all over the floor.
So much for our nice dinner!
But we are called down finally, late, & the tables look wonderful as usual.
We are given our napkins in our napkin rings.
The cool people with Jackie are at one table, we, the quieter ones, are at the other.
The Captain is sitting beside me.
He tries to look there but he is not.
He is just staring into space, a zombie.
i would not want to be in his shoes.
He is trying to be polite, trying to be there, but he is not.
i forget if i told you that there are special wines & beers pulled out at every dinner & out they come tonight & we do a toast.
It is explained that we hit a rock.
The rock is on the charts!
But the Captain had the scanner/monitor thing set wrong, & the rock was not in sight.
It was totally his fault & he is hugely chagrined.
He explains that they would have taken us to the shore in the zodiacs, started a fire, brought us snacks & blankets.
But that wasn*t necessary.
Here we are having our last nice dinner.
i forget what it was, there were FOUR courses on this night, all amazing.
The wine & the beer flow & the cool table gets loud & to me annoying.
It is late, i am tired, i want to go to bed.
Then my greatest nightmare next to sinking.
The Talking Feather is pulled out & we all have to say what we thought of the trip!
& the Feather starts close to me & i don*t have time to think.
i think i said something about feeling well cared for, & that i saw everything i could have wanted to see, & then i folded forward & put the feather on my head.
Jackie came from behind to take the feather & give my head a hug.
i am still shaking while the rest say their part.
We were thanked for being such an easy going group.
Things came up & we just rolled with it, no one was demanding or complaining.
We thank our crew for treating us with such pampering care.
Finally we get to go to bed.
i look our down the side of the boat & water is still pumping like crazy out of that outlet.
Are they telling us the truth?
Are we really okay?
It is a rough stormy night.
We have learned how to keep the room cool to help us to sleep.
The porthole is open in the bathroom & we can prop our door open & keep it open with a brass hook.
The wind is buffeting the ship & the rain is pouring down as i lie there sleepless, hoping someone is paying attention & that we are not sinking.
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: boonibarb on February 07, 2018, 11:54:30 AM

Our last day on the boat, & it is a short one.
We have our lovely breakfast, Eggs Benedict!, then return to our bunk room to pack our stuff up.
We only need to leave it ready, it will all be brought to shore for us by the crew.
i think Porpoises & Humpbacks were spotted, but not by my eyes.

We are back to Port McNeil at 10 or 11, as planned.
We meet our bags back at the top of the dock near the parking lot where we first met Jackie & the rest of our group.
i try to hide from all the hugging & e-mail address exchanging going on, but the crew all seek me out & i get a hug from all of them.
A bottle is found & held up & i recognize it as my hair conditioner.
i look down at my pack & realize there is a hole in it big enough for the conditioner to slip out of.

The car is brought close by my bunk mate & off we go for the drive home.
At a gas stop on the way home i check that pocket of my pack, remembering that all my keys were in there!
The pocket is empty!
Did all my keys fall out & now i have no keys for my house when i get home?
Oh, boy, was i ever relieved to find them in the OTHER pocket.

i get dropped off in Courtenay at a pub to have lunch/dinner while my bunk mate continues on in the pouring rain.
i am dying to get home but it is a lovely meal & i get driven all the way to my door & can just relax, dry & warm.

i can*t WAIT to get home & start my fire!, have a hot shower & comb the knots out of my hair & sleep in MY OWN BED!, which feels like heaven when i climb in there & fall right asleep.
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Tigerlady105 on February 07, 2018, 08:39:33 PM
Quite eggciting on your last day, booni!  I'm so glad you shared your adventures with us and that you are home and safe.

I wish there would be more stories, but the trip has ended.  Looking forward to your photos    :nod2

Thank you for 'taking' us with you.  

Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: Cawatcher on February 08, 2018, 09:45:47 AM
Booni Thank you SO much for sharing your adventure with us I was in awe. I laughed got scared to near death  wonderful!!!
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: gmadeb3 on February 08, 2018, 09:07:37 PM
Well that was some adventure you went on and took us with you.  You have some great memories to look back on,  some a bit more exciting than others....... lol  Glad you made it back safe and sound to tell the tale
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: jeavverhey on February 09, 2018, 05:08:19 AM
You sure have a way with words Booni - like a humourist - you could sell this story to magazines or combine it with some of your other adventures into a chapter book with photo illlustrations -  I LOVE IT  :heart :eclove
Title: Re: Tugboat Adventure!
Post by: mishikeenhquay on February 10, 2018, 09:39:46 AM

There is nothing to say other that Gitchi Miigwetch. :heart