The David B is in WoodenBoat Magazine!
When we first stared Northwest Navigation Co. and bought the David B in 1998 we often dreamed of seeing her restored. We also hoped that someday there would be an article about the David B in WoodenBoat magazine as that magazine has always been a source of inspiration. This was especially true during the toughest times of restoring the David B when the end seemed impossibly out of reach. When things were difficult we’d often pull out our favorite copy of WoodenBoat – issue #140 Feb/Jan 1998 which featured the restoration of a boat called the Eda Frandsen. Its owners had done a beautiful job rebuilding it, and just prior to her relaunching a fire nearly destroyed her. Somehow, that didn’t deter the Eda Franden’s owners and they kept going. Their story helped inspire us. If they could rebuild an old wooden boat (twice) and get through major obstacles, then we could too!
So, seventeen years later Jeffrey and I have finally made our dream of seeing the David B in WoodenBoat magazine come true. Just yesterday Issue #242 Jan/Feb 2015 arrived in my mailbox. As I tore open the packaging, I felt both the joy of accomplishment and the fear of criticism as I flipped through the magazine to my article. There it was on page 72. The head of the article has a beautiful picture of the David B at anchor in Fords Terror from one of our Alaska cruises a few years back. I scanned the article and hoped I still liked it. I did. The rest of the pictures were restoration photos. I sometimes forget how much work we did during those first years and reading the article reminded me of how far we’ve come with the David B and how far we will continue to go as we spend our summers cruising in the Inside Passage and Alaska.
A New Season Begins
Sea Otters in Queen Charlotte Sound
Earlier this summer when we were heading north to Ketchikan from Bellingham on our 12-day Inside Passage cruise, we has a pleasant surprise of finding several sea otters in a place we’d not seen them before. To read about it, head over to my blog at Yachting Magazine…
Tides, Currents and Rapids in the Inside Passage
Cruising in the Inside Passage should be on every boater’s Must-Do List. The rewards for making the trip to Alaska are interesting towns and villages to visit, amazing natural beauty and a wild and remote feel you can’t find elsewhere. The southern part of the Inside Passage from Seattle to Desolation Sound is chic with upscale island towns full of art galleries, small wineries and craft breweries. North of Desolation Sound the Inside Passage grows more remote and wild. It’s where you’re most likely to find solitude. All of it is over-the-top beautiful.
Cruising through Dent Rapids at slack water.
For the last several weeks I’ve covered many topics about cruising in the Inside Passage from electronics, to charts, to outfitting, to planning your trip. This week, I’m going to focus on the natural aspects of the trip, and how wind, tides and geography affect your voyage, as well as how to take some of the apprehension out of cruising in the Inside Passage.
The Inside Passage gets its dramatic geography from advances of the massive Cordilleran ice sheet that pushed its way south, all the way to Washington State in the late Pleistocene. Evidence of this long ago glaciation is written into the Steep-walled fjords where grooves in the rocks show the slow-motion scraping rock and ice. When you begin to study the charts of the Inside Passage you’ll notice that the long winding deep inlets that cut into mainland are the beds of the long ago glaciers and you can trace their retreat to the high coastal mountains where their remnants still remain. To continue reading about how tides and currents will effect your cruising in the Inside Passage click over to CruisingNW.com…
Cruise the Inside Passage – Presentation April 10th
If you love the Inside Passage and are dreaming of cruising to Alaska? Join us for an evening of photographs, fun stories and tips? on cruising the Inside Passage at the Whatcom Maritime Association’s monthly meeting on April 10th — 7pm. 2633 S Harbor Loop Dr, Bellingham, Washington
It’s free and open to the public. Click on the link below for printable flyer:
Directions to Squalicum Yacht Club
Think of a Road Trip…
you went on, maybe back in your early twenties. Do you remember the view out the windows, the miles going by, the freedom of choosing where you were going to go and how you were going to get to your destination? You were there, in the moment, living. Did you have your tent along, or did you crash at friends’ houses. Was it sunny and beautiful and windows-rolled-down cruising or crazy snowing and are-we-going-to-get-there-alive thrilling? Remember that wonderful feeling of having the music cranked up?
The thing is, it’s fun to live those trips and almost as much fun to re-live those trips later. We have all these memories, and for me seldom an hour goes by without thinking about something from the past. It’s not like I’m dragging up all these memories of just road trips. It’s all kinds of stuff. It’s just that the memories of what I had for lunch yesterday , or what I told my accountant last week aren’t going to stick with me like that ones from the road trip.
When you’re on the David B, you’ll see things that you might never get to see again. Humpback whales feeding together in groups, glacier carved fjords, native totem pole ruins slowly decomposing into the earth, bears meandering on the beach. The list is endless, no day is the same, but the memories, that’s what’s really important. They’re yours to bring back anytime. Like that road trip.
Call us. It’s time you went cruising.
We hope to see you soon!
Captain Jeffrey and Christine
PS. You won’t need your tent for this road trip!
Tips for Buying Your Boat’s Electronics Package
Outfitting your boat for cruising in the Inside Passage doesn’t have to be over-the-top expensive. You do, however, need to be prepared to spend a lot of money, but if you follow some basic guidelines for decision making, you can put together the best electronics package that will fit your budget.
When we were first buying electronics for the David B, we asked ourselves the following questions for each purchase:
How much does the equipment contribute to safety of the boat and crew?
How easy is it to operate?
Is it in my budget?
Click on over to CruisingNW.com for a complete list of our tips on buying electronics and why some electronics are more important than others.
Planning Your Inside Passage Cruise – Part Two
This week I wrote my second installment in the Learn to Cruise series I’d doing for CruisingNW.com. We’re doing set of articles in conjunction with our 12-day Learn to Cruise educational cruises in the Inside Passage. For week two I’m giving some tips for planning an itinerary. The topics include:
- What are my time constraints?
- How far will we go?
- What are our daily itineraries?
- What are our planned activities?
- What did I needed to know for Canada Customs and US Customs?
You can read the whole article at http://cruisingnw.com/planning-your-inside-passage-cruise-itinerary/#
Be sure to check out our 12-day Learn to Cruise the Inside Passage trips. These are fun one-way cruises departing from either Bellingham, Washington or Ketchikan, Alaska that are great for individuals or couple who want more hands-on boating experience in the Inside Passage.
For more information or to book a reservation:
Learn to Cruise the Inside Passage
When a friend of ours suggested we change the focus of our 12-Day Inside Passage trips between Bellingham and Ketchikan from nature and wildlife watching to instruction, we knew he had a great idea. Last year we sold out our Learn to Cruise trips and we certainly hope to do so again this year.
As part of our excitement about these trips, we are happy to announce a series of articles we’ll be writing for CruisingNW.com. In these articles we’ll be sharing information on cruising the Inside Passage. We hope this will help others plan their own trips. The link below will take you our first installment. In this article you’ll learn why we feel cruising in the Inside Passage should be on everyone’s bucket list.
We hope you’ll enjoy these articles and find them useful!
If you are interested in signing up for one of our Learn to Cruise trips you can call us at 360-201-8184 or fill out the form below:
Serendipity and the David B
A few of years ago we had a couple from Austin, Texas come on the David B for a cruise in the San Juan Islands. Sarah and Rob are both adventurous people and we took a liking to them immediately. Rob and Sarah are interesting for many reasons, but one of the most interesting thing about them is their lifestyle. They are “urban nomads.” This means they live lightly and are constantly on the move.
In the spring when we were looking for a house sitter to take care of our cats while we are away in Alaska doing cruises, Sarah and Rob were looking for a place to rebuild their newly purchased RV. Their schedule fit perfectly with ours and we’ve been feeling lucky to have them taking care of both our house and our cats. Here’s Sarah and Rob’s story. It was originally published on Sarah’s blog.
June 20, 2012
Rob said, “The whole reason we moved to the Pacific Northwest was so I can rebuild our RV.” Funny, I thought we moved to the PNW when he took a job as an engineer last year. Silly me.
I had asked him about Serendipity at lunch today, because the Technomads recently issued a Serendipity Challenge: http://www.technomadia.com/2012/06/serendipity-challenge-contest/ The challenge asked how being open to opportunities leads to incredible experiences.
Working backwards, I think Rob is right. Serendipity has definitely played a part in our lives over the past four years.
First, we are having a wonderful time this summer because our friends Jeffrey and Christine asked us to house and cat sit while they are in Alaska’s inside passage. We met Jeffrey and Christine Smith when we took one of their small ship cruises in 2010. This cruise trip to the San Juan Islands was organized by Chuck Byrd, who was one of the Smith’s first passengers when they started their business in 2006. Rob met Chuck, who led a Sierra Club outings leadership training that Rob took in 2008. Rob took this training because when he first moved to Austin, TX he wanted to meet new people.
Secondly, how does this help us rebuild an RV? Well in addition to a cute house in Bellingham,WA with hot and cold running cats Harriett and Oswald, the Smith’s have a full-sized wood shop plus a quarter-ton pick-up truck from Christine’s former gardening business. I can’t imagine rebuilding the RV DIY style in less than twelve weeks without access to storage, tools and a table saw. There is no way Rob could have gotten the materials we needed or disposed of the old RV contents with out that old panel truck.
Two more added bonuses to living in Bellingham are that it has one of the country’s best hardware stores and by being a seaside port town, lots of marine supply stores. Hardware Sales is not a store, it is an industrial complex with over four buildings spanning two city blocks. (Take THAT Home Depot and Lowes!) The aisles are narrow and filled from floor to ceiling with tools, hardware and building materials. If they don’t have it, you don’t need it. No seriously, you don’t.
Fortunately there are a lot of cross overs between RV and Marine applications. Often you need it small, efficient and nailed down. Looking for cabinet door catches and the RV store charges an arm and a leg? You can always try the Pacific Marine Exchange looking for “consignment booty”.
Finally, the last bit of serendipity is what I call the “mercy firing”.
Since he started in mid-May, Rob has been spending eight hours a day five and six days a week working on the RV. The project is that extensive, even with Rob’s considerable engineering and building skills. Still, Rob has the time to rebuild the RV because he was let go the Monday before we were supposed to start house sitting. How is that for timing?
A bit more background for those of you without a scorecard about Rob’s job. Last year when a head hunter approached Rob, he thought this job would give him a sense of accomplishment by working for an established company with definite projects. Initially it was exciting to be moving to Bellingham, WA because we knew Jeffrey and Christine. They were very helpful offering suggestions about nice places to live. They even let us store our stuff in their shop for a week. (Man that shop is useful!)
Unfortunately that was not to be the case. Legacy products and corporate culture was clamping down hard on his definition of quality engineering. So Rob had already begun planning his exit strategy, but he wanted to rebuild the RV first.
Rob’s original plan was to work full-time while working on the RV at night and then give his notice in August. That is when we would start RV’ing full-time. Admittedly I was worried he wouldn’t have enough time to rebuild the RV at night. Nor was I looking forward to being a “RV widow”, even if he was just 60 feet away in the backyard. Thankfully the company realized Rob’s heart just wasn’t in the job anymore and let him go.
So through a connection that started four years ago in Austin, TX, we wound up in Bellingham, WA rebuilding an RV practically from scratch and with the time to do it right. Thanks again Chuck for inviting us on your small ship cruise trip all those years ago. I’m so glad we said yes! I can only imagine that given how our full-time RV lifestyle is starting out that Serendipity will continue to be a force in our lives for many years to come.
Click to follow Sarah Kirkish – Urban Nomad and Business Consultant, or check out Sarah’s business Work Life Organization.