Salish Sea Ports
Salish Sea Ports
To get to Victoria, we had to come up the relatively desolate Washington coast until we could make a right turn into the strait that separates the United States and Canada: the Strait of Juan de Fuca. At the eastern end of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, where it dead ends, we could make a right (in a southerly direction) or a left (in a northerly direction). The former takes us south into the Puget Sound—a waterway that would take us down past Seattle to Olympia and other Washington towns. The latter, northerly route takes us into the Strait of Georgia—through the San Juan Islands and all the way up to Desolation Sound. These three interconnected coastal waterways of straits, sounds, and inlets are collectively referred to as the Salish Sea.
This is all new and exciting geography for the crew of Del Viento.
So we made a detour on our way to Victoria. We visited old friends and new friends in the
three primary Washington “Port” towns: Port Angeles, Port Townsend, and Port Ludlow. All three are distinct and all three offer free, convenient anchorages.
Port Angeles (PA) is closest to the Pacific Ocean and may have the lowest crime rate of any town in America. When we jumped in the dinghy to meet our friend Jim for a trip up to Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic National Park, we grabbed our best binoculars and digital SLR with all the lenses—this place promised stunning views. We weren’t disappointed, but we didn’t take a single picture or scan the vistas with our binocs. Instead, we got up there and realized we left our expensive gear sitting on the public dock near the dinghy. Incredibly, when we returned hours later, both our camera and binoculars were sitting right where we left them.
Port Townsend (PT) is at the mouth of Puget Sound. She boasts Victorian homes and buildings along a picturesque main street, chandleries that cater to wooden boat aficionados, and she is home to world-class boat tradespeople like Carol Hasse and Brion Toss. Our friends John, Cindy, and their daughter, Journey, have their boat here on the hard, undergoing an extensive refit. Namaste is a sistership to Del Viento and will be soon joining us on the cruising trail.
Port Ludlow (PL) is a bit deeper into the Sound and there is little development visible from the water. In fact, there is no town with a main street, Port Ludlow is a bedroom community of homes nestled in the hillsides and a private marina. As we approached, we explored a narrow inlet nearby and the small, hidden bay it opened to. This protected body of water, about a thousand feet across, is surrounded by large and pricey homes.
In our twenties, we traded our boat for a house and our freedom for careers. In our thirties, we slumbered through the American dream. In our forties, we woke and traded our house for a boat and our careers for freedom. And here we are. Follow along at http://www.logofdelviento.blogspot.com/