Tales of Blue Aweigh travel blog

Looking west from the west end of Orcas Island

Interesting looking kelp here

My latest creation, a hat!

The gnome house. We expected to see a gnome wander out and...

The fire station in Deer Harbor.

Mike spending time with Pandora. One of these days I'm gonna take...

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Almost 360 degree view from San Juan Island headed to Orcas Island

Well we got just what the doctor ordered! A nice restful and cheap week in Deer Harbor on Orcas Island amongst the beautiful San Juan Islands just off the coast of mainland Washington state. The winter rate of $88.00 including power with no restaurants or any possible place to spend money allowed us to just focus on getting over the flu after 2 weeks of misery. Wha, wha....we seldom are sick and are not good patients.

We've had sun, wind, rain, freezing rain, hail and snow but once again we were not disappointed. The sunsets are breathtaking. Since our car is still waiting for us in La Conner, WA so our only outings have consisted of a few afternoon strolls which have shown us how the really lucky live. There are many remote homes some modest some just breathtaking, with beauty and quiet all around. We hear summertime changes all that here but for now it's paradise. We hear this island has 5,000 residents but we cannot get to the other side to see for ourselves as it is a 7 mile walk. One way is doable, but 14 miles as we recover is a bit much. A cold dinghy ride seems out of the question. Thought about hitchhiking but I just couldn't bring myself to do it. On our walk today we spotted a gnome house. Don't know if it's occupied but sure sparked our interest. Met a really great guy, Bob, an Alaskan fisherman and shared some beers with him on board. He has fished with and knows all the guys from the TV show, "The Deadliest Catch". Mike went aboard his pleasure boat here which is headed back to Alaska next month, and enjoyed some fishing pictures he had on board of fish holds overloaded with 120 tons of halibut worth about $250K! We always meet really cool people at marinas.

So paradise does have some black clouds.....of diesel exhaust! Yep, our Fischer-Panda generator (which I call Pandora) is at it again. Just started her up this week for general purposes as we will be relying on this machinery HEAVILY as we head north when at anchor. We were rewarded with billowing smelly black smoke inside and outside the cabin. Come to find out she sprung two leaks; hose and the aluminum exhaust outlet developed a nice big hole. So the factory is going to cover the aluminum part under warranty as it has only 370 hours. This is frustrating and causing us concern as we head further north. Will have the generator serviced after we get, and Mike installs the part on Friday. Our plan is to see what a mechanic thinks about how she is behaving overall before we leave the U.S. This has been a nightmare for us and the only mechanical problem we have experienced and couldn't fix ourselves. Last year we spent 2 months at separate times having work done in Mazatlan which was also covered by warranty. Will keep you posted about this one.

As for fresh food on board,I have one egg, one onion and one pear left. All else on board in canned or frozen. One week of no fresh produce makes me long to stand in a produce section of Vons and admire the colors there. I am now anxious to try someone else's cooking for a change and will head a bit south to the mainland tomorrow. We will take care of Pandora and pick up the car and get some fresh produce! Life is good.

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