Bras d’Or Lakes

What a lovely location! After St. Peter’s we didn’t suffer any fog – that in itself was a welcome change! The lakes are quite large – and the sailing turns out to be very good – especially if you wait until the afternoon for the wind to develop. With very flat water, it’s easy to get some very nice speed in just 10 -12 knots of wind.

There are islands all over the place and where to spend the night is all about deciding what you want to look at and which direction you want protection from.

So far, our favorite destination has been the Crammond Islands where we anchored in a channel between two islands – bounded by shallow shoals at either end. The entrance was one we had to be careful with – and in view of the previous evening’s activities, we were seriously conservative.

Crammond Islands

Crammond Islands

We were in the Crammond Islands with the Squadron Fleet – so I think we had 11 boats in the anchorage – Toodle-oo! remaining firmly in the center, in the deepest part – as far aways as possible from the mosquitoes and flies – and in the deepest spot so that if we dragged, it would be an uphill drag in all directions! It was only 45ft. Others searched out the shallowest areas close to land – and some seemed to have some difficulty.

Once again we observed some interesting Squadron behavior… One boat arrived a little late and decided it was going to raft up to another anchored boat. Little did they know that the anchored boat was on it’s third attempt to anchor. Sure enough, soon after laying a veritable spider’s web of lines, the anchor began to drag. When they finally noticed what was going on, there was no time to untie all the lines, so the upped anchor and did a really good impression of being a catamaran as they drove around the anchorage seeking a spot where they could attempt another landing. When that failed too, they separated and anchored individually – good call!

We had a nice circumnavigation by dinghy of the two islands – and were rewarded when Laurie spotted a Bald Eagle. We got another sighting a little later as we enjoyed Cheese and Wine aboard Toodle-Pip!

We sailed out of the Crammond Islands once the wind had filled in and had a lazy sail (genoa only) up to Clarke Cove. We anchored in a very secluded bay and were delighted to find out that this was apparently a Bald Eagle roosting spot – we were treated to an Eagle for the evening. In the morning when I check to see if it was still about – it wasn’t – instead a Juvenile (black head) had taken up residence and was squawking for food! Soon we had two Eagles to admire.

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle

From Clarke Cove – whose only downside was that it appeared to be a Ski-Doo hangout – we sailed (lazily again) up through the Barra Straight Swing Bridge to Maskells Harbor, another very secluded anchorage – filled with Squadron boats.

We’re now in Baddeck where we’ve been for the last two nights – and probably will be another couple… We had an entertaining evening at a Caleigh and then a tremendous event last night – the last playing of the Bells of Baddeck – a musical play about Alexander Graham Bell – in whose museum the play was held. We hope to visit the museum tomorrow.

We’re struggling with communications – our SSB won’t talk to the computer so our shipboard email is down – as is our ability to get weather information once we’re in Newfoundland. So we’re trying to fix that issue before proceeding…

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