Tag Archives: marina

New Spreader Boots

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The most common question I get asked by curious non-climbers is, “Why?” By which I think they mean, “”What would compel a sane person to want to spend as much time as possible dangling off the side of a cliff?”

I could answer something along the lines of how you are never fully alive until you look down between your feet to see… nothing. Or, how standing on top of a mountain makes you feel simultaneously invincible and insignificant. Or, how there is simply no better way to spend a day than by being outside… But I won’t. What I discovered recently is that there is a very practical and sensible reason to be happy in high places.

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Raring to go up the mast! 

A few weeks ago we were out on my daughter and son-in-law’s sailboat. We tacked just as a big gust caught us and handily fouled the foresail. In the aftermath (which involved a lot of flapping lines and waving arms and scrambling around to get the sail back where it was meant to be) we managed to send a spreader boot flying off the end of the spreader and into Finlayson Arm where it sank in hundreds of feet of icy cold water.

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Not a sharp photo – sorry about that. But you can see the state of the old spreader boot (the one that didn’t fly off into the water). It was disintegrating and held on only by a single ancient cable tie. That cable tie popped off when I touched it, so it was a good thing we replaced both while I was up there.

After procuring new pair, I was delighted to be sent up the mast to install the shiny new spreader boots. Securely fastened with rigger’s tape, they will help provide a smooth non-snagging surface for wayward halyards.

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The view from below. 

See? Slipping into a climbing harness and heading up, up, up is about the most fun a climber can have on a boat!

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The view from above…

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Escape from the Farm…

Dad and I snuck off the farm for a couple of hours yesterday afternoon to go on a photo expedition – first to a nearby marina in Brentwood Bay and then to the Institute of Ocean Sciences at Pat Bay. We both took lots of photos and stopped a couple of times for coffee and to warm up (it was one of those grey, damp days that wound up being chillier than you’d expect, especially by the water).

Entrance to the Institute of Ocean Sciences

The Institute of Ocean Sciences is a beautifully designed building thoughtfully sited on a stunning piece of land on Pat Bay. A seismic research centre and home to many ocean-research types, the building and grounds are open to the public.

I was trying very hard to ignore my phone, but the messages kept coming thick and fast – five new sign-ups for our CSA Goody Boxes (yay!), a friend needing to borrow a couple of transport crates for chickens tomorrow, another friend wondering whether we have room in the goat barn to temporarily house a couple of goats for another friend, someone in the prairies calling to see if we can ship fertile Ridley Bronze turkey eggs, and two inquiries about hogs and pork.

Egg vending machines could be a handy way around the fact our farm is located on a dead end road with virtually no drive bay traffic…

At the second coffee stop managed to do some research on the feasibility of selling eggs through vending machines, coordinate a work session to finish up the last edits on the new book, and schedule a meeting with another farmer possibly looking to collaborate on a couple of projects for which I do not have space… Gads. My attempt to get away for a couple of hours was a bit ridiculous!

The coffee shop at the Institute of Ocean Sciences - includes a lovely view past arbutus trees over the water...

The coffee shop at the Institute of Ocean Sciences – includes a lovely view past arbutus trees over the water…

Suspended fish in the atrium...

Suspended fish in the atrium…

The marina we visited in Brentwood Bay offered up photo opportunities of a more rustic nature.

This old dinghy has seen better days.

This old dinghy has seen better days.

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Paddle neatly stowed on the deck of an old wooden sailboat

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Classic lines on this graceful sailing dinghy.

I’m really looking forward to seeing what comes out of Dad’s studio after he has a chance to go through the reference material he gathered today…