Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Bras dOr Lakes, Nova Scotia

Locking through to the Bras d'Or

The canal at St Peter's
 After a pleasant downwind overnight sail from Halifax, I  made my usual late night arrival and anchored about a mile from the entrance to the lock at St Peter's.  Picked up the anchor late the next afternoon and traversed the lock. With "unofficial" permission I tied to the approach wall for the night to check out the town of St Peters.
The harbor at Baddeck
 Early the next morning I made my way through scattered showers to Johnstown Harbor with only the last few miles exposed the the brisk North winds blowing across the open waters of the Lake. Laid at anchor there for several days and explored the area by dinghy as the undergrowth ashore was to thick for any hiking. With an approaching weather forecast favorable for making the trip across Cabot strait approaching, I gave up on waiting for a southerly wind and motored to Baddeck so there would be time for a bit of touring there before sailing to Newfoundland. I spent the better part of sunday visiting the Bell Museum. Alexander Bell was quite a fascinating person! Although known primarily as the inventor of the telephone, he was also involved in many other projects ranging from aviation, hydrofoils, communications for deaf people and much more.  After careful calculations to arrive at the Narrows at slack water, I set sail Monday morning for Newfoundland.
Notes: There is a tide station at Johnstown, I used it to time my arrival at the Barra Strait bridge. Arrived 1 hour past high tide and found minimal current. Wifi available at Tim Hortons in St Peter and at the yacht club in Baddeck. Being a small town, nearly everything was closed on Sunday in Baddeck, including the grocery store and gas station. Fuel is available at the marina; .30 a liter cheaper at the Esso station behind the yacht club. The inner harbor is full of moorings, but there is good anchorage out towards the lighthouse. This area has numerous remote anchorages and great sailing; one could easily spent a month sailing about in the lakes, but due to the lateness of the season I must keep moving so there is some time for Newfoundland.
Leaving the Bras d Or,Newfoundland bound