Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Alaska 2016 | Day 105-106 | Vancouver

Friday and Saturday in Vancouver were a whirlwind: tons of walking, a bit of shopping (exchange rate sure helps), catching up with Vince and Linda from the flotilla, meals out, Theatre Under the Stars (West Side Story), aquarium visit, tandem biking, more walking...
Jellyfish at the Vancouver Aquarium
Happy hour with Vince and Linda after tandem biking around Stanley Park.
Oops, not sure how this sailboat ended up aground in False Creek.
Theatre Under the Stars in Stanley Park
Walking near Coal Harbour
Vancouver is a great city to visit by boat. It's easy to walk from False Creek to the major tourist areas like Stanley Park, downtown, Chinatown, and Gastown. Most of the city felt safe (although everyone used bike locks on their dinghies) and prices were reasonable. It's beautiful, with water all around and mountains in the distance. Thanks to Vince and Linda for playing tour guide!

Alaska 2016 | Day 104 | Pender Harbour to Vancouver

After months in wilderness and small towns, we headed for the city.

I'd previously only visited Vancouver by boat once, and that was for a single night. This time we'd have several days to explore the city.

The Strait of Georgia cooperated and we had a smooth trip down. As we neared Vancouver, traffic increased. English Bay was filled with huge ships, which we weaved through as we headed towards False Creek. Once in False Creek, avoiding the dozens of dinghies, kayaks, paddleboards, and boats of all descriptions demanded my full attention.
Approaching Vancouver
Unlike Seattle, Vancouver has excellent urban anchoring. False Creek is well protected, shallow (20-30 feet), and has good holding. In the past it was choked with squatters and liveaboards, but now a permit system limits stays to 14 days of any 30 day period during the peak season. Permits are free and easy to acquire online. We anchored at the head of False Creek, between the B.C. Place stadium and Science World. Super cool!
Urban anchoring, at the head of False Creek
After anchoring we took the dinghy to one of the dinghy docks (there are five or six throughout False Creek...basically anywhere the Aquabus Ferry docks) and walked to Granville Island. Granville Island is kind of like the Pike Place Market on steroids...about a million food vendors selling everything from bagels to cheese to pate to fancy butter to fresh produce. Really delicious.
Wandering around the market at Granville Island
We'll spend the next few days wandering around Vancouver...

47.33 nm today
3122.40 nm total

Friday, August 26, 2016

Alaska 2016 | Day 103 | Pender Harbour

Chore day. I cleaned all the sea strainers, replaced the zincs in the main engine cooling system, filled the batteries with water, and adjusted the AirSep crankcase vent system to (hopefully) eliminate a minor oil leak. Then we did three loads of laundry. Then we washed the outside of the boat...it hadn't had a good wash in months. Not much fun, but good to get this stuff done!

We haven't been near a restaurant for several weeks. After all the work today, we dinghied over to Madeira Park and walked up (and I do mean up...it's quite a hill) to the new Grasshopper Pub for dinner. The food was good, the view was great, and no dishes!
View from dinner at the Grasshopper Pub