Port Gamble has become one of our favorite anchorages south of the Juan DeFuca Straight. Not only is it well protected, it goes completely unused by anyone else. The shores are littered with clams and oysters that Kerri likes to eat
, and there is a fantastic trail system just a short dinghy ride away where she does her fungus hunting thing
. Me, I’m just happy that we normally get the entire place all to ourselves for a bit of peace and quiet. Only a few days have we had to endure a neighbor over the course of multiple visits, each lasting a week or more. And getting back to living self sufficiently (our own solar power and water) is feeling damn good.
This is likely the final time we will ever get to visit this anchorage as there are no plans to return to the Puget Sound once we sail off towards Alaska. So we are enjoying our last days here as best we can. We have already gone up for some trail hiking, and Kerri already took some time to pick a few oysters. The weather has prevented us from getting out a few days this week, with Friday’s wind-event being the worst of it. Gusts into the mid-30’s made Meriwether dance all about, but we were mostly comfortable since the waves never really have the space to build up here. There was a welcomed feeling of calm during an event that would have frightened us not long ago. We have other things to keep us entertained during these times, like continuing our years-long game of Yahtzee beside the wood stove (I’m still winning).
We arrived at one of my favorite (at least, accessible by boat) foraging wonderlands on Sunday night. Monday, the low tide at 5pm made it easy to decide to start with a hike. I was hoping to spot some morels, but instead found Ladyfern fiddleheads, horsetail, and salmonberry and current/gooseberry in bloom. I didn’t find any morels, but I did find a Gyromitra esculenta, which is the one “false morel” around here that gives all the others their bad names due to its toxicity. This is the first time I’ve been here in Spring, and also the first time I’ve been here when the water temp are cool enough to be able slurp down this shore’s Pacific oysters raw! The challenge is finding small enough oysters in these beds.
Being back out at anchor for good after four months in town, seeing and talking to people basically everyday, is a strange adjustment. This is my natural habitat for sure, but it’s taking some getting used to.
Reposted (with spelling corrections) from Kerri’s Facebook since she refuses to
write post blog posts herself (she doesn’t realize that her Facebook> posts are essentially blog posts)