Skip to content

Quick Trip to the Boat | Day 2 | Orcas Island to Decatur Island

Sunrise at Double Island anchorage on Orcas yesterday morning (above: Double Island on the left, Alegria Island on the right). This anchorage is pretty great. It was so still overnight (a little too still, in fact!)

Kevin flew his new Mavic Pro drone in the morning and got some gorgeous shots:

Alegria Island:

Orcas Island in the background:

After breakfast and showers, we pulled anchor and thought we might go over and stay at James Island for the night. The wind was supposed to be from the east, so the west side of James would be protected, but the dock isn’t down yet there (it’s up/removed from October through March) and there are no mooring balls on the west side (and the anchorage there is rocky and marginal).

We decided to continue on around and check out a little cove at the south tip of Decatur Island. We’re anchored right about where I put the blue X, and it looks like this on Google maps/satellite view:

It’s a bit narrow, and a little shallow (we anchored in about 20 feet at low tide) — perfect protection from the east winds scheduled to kick up a little, and we’ve got a great view.

Kevin flew the Mavic again from the top deck of Airship soon after we got settled, and got some more cool photos. Here’s a great overhead view of our little cove with the sand spit in the background:

That little dot is a rowboat heading out of the cove:

Another overhead of Airship (and Kevin):

We thought we’d dinghy over to the spit and walk on the beach a bit before it got dark. The beach looked nice and sandy and we both opted to wear our Bogs instead of our Xtratuf boots. Turns out, this was a bad choice. It shallows so slowly as you approach the spit that there was nowhere to beach the dinghy where we would be able to avoid stepping ankle deep to get out. We tried a few places, talked about going back to get our Xtratufs, but it was cold outside and finally Kevin said “I’m wondering if there’s much to do over here, or whether I’d just rather be inside the warm boat with a cocktail.” We tried a few more spots after that but eventually opted to head back to Airship.

We grilled some chicken for tacos (more tacos!) last night and called it an early night. The wind picked up and we had a bit of wave slap but managed to get some sleep regardless.

The weather today is crappy…gray, windy, rainy. Sounds like a good day to head back to port!


  1. David Wilkie Owen David Wilkie Owen

    I’m reading your blog and listening to it rain in Santa Barbara. A gray, nasty day, by Central Coast standards, but we are in heaven and loving the rain. We are STILL in a very nasty drought despite this winter’s very productive storms. NT 32-260 “Wilson” is coming together as I prep for adventure in and around the Channel Islands. I’m heading out this morning for a day-cruise to a neighboring anchorage to test and initiate my new ground tackle and to nap some in a warm tug with the rain coming down. I will undoubtedly enjoy some more down time reading your amazing blog and eating chili. Thanks for your efforts.

  2. Steve Mitchell Steve Mitchell

    Nice shots from the new Mavic drone! I have used mine a ton already and love it’s portability even with the slightly less high resolution snaps and videos. It’s so nice to have a compact package that can pretty much go anywhere!

  3. Kevin McLaughlin Kevin McLaughlin

    Two very cool anchorages! But explain the “too still” part because that be quite a new concept in places to anchor overnight.

    • I can definitely explain. I like to know I’m on a boat, but I also like to know I’m not just sitting in the slip in the marina. So if there’s slight movement…say, a nice gentle rocking…then it’s about perfect (for me). If there’s no movement, I might as well be on the hard in a yard somewhere. 🙂

      • Kevin McLaughlin Kevin McLaughlin

        True that. My momentary fear when awakening to a perfectly still boat is that I’m aground after floating away in the night

        • I like to think there’d be some noise associated with going aground…noise that I wouldn’t sleep through.

Comments are closed.