Making our way to the north shore…

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We left Michipicoten Island on Thursday morning, after resting up a day, and motorsailed to Otter Cove, at Otter Head along the east shore of Lake Superior. Again, the lake was calm and we had another beautiful day.

We had Otter Cove to ourselves for the evening. We have not yet heard or seen another boat. It does make one feel very isolated. Again I am reminded of the massive beauty of this area of Lake Superior.

While we ate dinner that evening in Otter Cove, Ron’s fishing line suddenly caught on something. We figured that it had to be a log on the bottom, as it wasn’t acting like a fish. Wrong! As he tried reeling in his line, we realized that there was a fish attached: a large, beautiful lake trout! Unfortunately, the line was wrapped around our swim ladder and as we tried to haul the fish in, trying to get it part way in our fishing net (our net was too small!), the line broke and we lost the fish. This fish could have fed us for 3 meals, at least. Ah well. We now know that it’s possible to catch lake trout off the boat at anchor!

From Otter Cove, we had a very nice sail to Simons Harbour. As soon as we entered the anchorage, I recognized the harbor as one we had been in 11 years ago with our kids. As we were anchored there in the evening, a bear swam from one side of the anchorage to the other, in front of our boat. This time, our only visit was from a loon who called the harbor home. It is a lovely, protected harbor and kept us quite comfortable in the strong SW winds we had overnight.

With southerly winds still in the forecast, we took advantage and sailed another 21 nm up the coast to Pulpwood Harbour, a favorite spot of ours with Provincial Park facilities just a short dinghy ride from the anchorage. They added free wifi since the last time we were there and I was really looking forward to re-connecting with family and friends. However, they apparently only have the wifi on when the visitor center is open (10 AM to 4 PM). We arrived just a few minutes past 4:00. Oh well. We were able to dispose of several days’ worth of garbage and to take our first hot showers since leaving Grand Marais. Before heading back to the dinghy, I walked up to the top of the Headlands Trail, a well-marked and easy climb that gives you a beautiful view of the harbors and overlooks Lake Superior. Up high, sitting atop the rocks, I was able to connect to the cell tower at Marathon, easily downloading my email and sending a couple of messages to our kids. Good enough! At Pulpwood, we ran into our first boat this trip: our friends on Catamount. It was good to share stories of where we’ve been and what we’ve been doing. We’re sailing in the same general areas so we’ll be meeting up with them on occasion again, before we begin heading back south.

We considered sitting at Pulpwood a day to spend some time on wifi at Hattie Cove, but the day was misty and cold and dreary. Wind was forecast to be E, becoming NE, so we raised anchor and pushed on. There seemed no reason to sit for a day if the weather was going to be crappy; might as well be moving. Well, it wasn’t a very nice day to move–we should have had a beam reach to Foster’s Island, but the wind was more north than east and it was heavier than forecast, gusting to 20 knots. It felt so good to get into the protection of the shore and islands and to get our anchor down for the day.

Today there is sun and clearing here along the north shore and light variable winds. We are again using diesel fuel and motoring to a new anchorage. Although the water is very cold (storage compartments below our waterline and next to our hull are like mini refrigerators!), the sun warms the air up nicely on days like today.

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