Wednesday, June 19, 2013


Last September DH and I spent five days on the MV David B, a wooden boat owned and operated by Jeffrey and Christine Smith.  We LOVED the trip and wished we could afford one of the longer tours which go up into the Inside Passage of Canada and even on up to Alaska.  Then I got an email from Christine telling me there was a special offer of half price on a nine day trip up into Desolation Sound.  Were we interested?  It was one of those moments when you realize if you let it pass you'll always regret it.  I had a little cash in the bank I'd inherited and was saving for an emergency.  This was an emergency.  Long story short.  If all went well we've left Beavis to mow the lawn and bring in the paper.
We've left home.  We are on an expedition.

Below is a reposting of a report of our previous trip.

A few months ago DH and I began searching online for a way to spend some time exploring by boat.  We both agreed time on a giant cruise ship was out.  The crowds, noise, revelry and distance from nature just didn’t appeal to either of us.

So our interest was captured by a web site for Northwest Navigation and their boat, the David B.  She is a sixty-five foot wooden motor vessel owned and operated by Jeffrey and Christine Smith.

The Smiths spent eight years restoring the ship and its Washington Iron Works engine.
 They relaunched it as a tour boat in 2006.

Jeffrey is a skilled captain and Christine is an enthusiastic naturalist and accomplished chef.  It didn’t take much convincing for us to sign up for a five day tour of the San Juan Islands of Puget Sound in the northwest corner of Washington State.

In fact I was almost jumping up and down when we found the David B  at the marina in Bellingham Bay.

The weather was perfect the morning we boarded along with three other passengers.  Christine made sure we were settled into our comfortable rooms and then went to work in the galley.

Christine in the galley with Juliette, passenger and assistant chef.
Jeffrey is at the wheel in the pilothouse.
 Christine has a handsome wood stove in her galley
 where she creates scrumptious food with fresh bread for every meal.

DH and I savored the sunlight sparkling off the water as the David B’s three cylinder engine kept up a soothing chug which sounded to me like a cross between a Harley motorcycle and a fetal heart monitor.

The Sound was filled with plenty of other small craft plus the inter-island ferries that carry passengers to ports in the San Juan Islands.

Every day we stopped to explore something on some island.  This is Jeffrey bringing Jeff and Chris and Christine (yes the similar names were a bit confusing) to the beach where we would go on a hike around Sucia Island.

 Christine pointed out different trees, birds and plants and showed us creatures in the tide pools.

She led us on explorations of forest trails…

…and pointed out fossils

…in the mudstone of Fossil Bay.

We were never far from land and  we could almost always see 10, 700 ft. Mount Baker, a thermally active peak, second only to Mount St. Helens, in the Cascade Range.

Each evening Jeffrey found a quiet cove to drop anchor and each morning
was a relaxing experience of stillness spiced with aromas of breakfast
from Christine's stove.

of the David B


Buttons Thoughts said...

Oh yes that is certainly an emergency. You need to be back there and enjoying all this nature peace and quiet. Oh I am so jealous. Have fun. Hugs B

Anzu said...

Wonderful (*'▽'*)♪
Thank you for sharing beautiful scenery and priceless experience.
I want to try it once in a lifetime.

joeh said...

That would be my kind of cruise.


Alica said...

I hope you're having the time of your lives! Yes, I'm jealous...but happy for you!! :)

Linda Sue said...

So fabulous that you can recognize an emergency when it crosses your e-mail path! YAHOO! Desolation Sound is where we went for our so called honeymoon, with three other people, all friends- on his sail boat, though we motored a good part of the way. Whales within petting distance, Quiet warm water for swimming- AHHH lovely! Good job, you!

fishducky said...

The smallest cruise ship we were ever on was a Lindblad (?) to the Galapagos. There were only about 50 passengers--WONDERFUL!!

Florida Farm Girl said...

Oh, looks like you're having a wonderful time.

Neighbors of family members on Lummi Island sail the Northwind in the San Juans, also.

Terry and Linda said...

OH! Wonderful for you! We don't want a cruise either, but a private little float/sail/cruise DELIGHTFUL!


Val said...

The closest I ever got to a trip like that was a huge, drive-on ferry from Ketchikan to Juneau. We chose not to book a room, but to use the sleeping chairs. Still, it was beautiful scenery.

Hope you take LOTS of pictures!

Anonymous said...

Definitely a good way to spend rainy-day money!! Hope you are having a great time.

Bewildermunster said...

That is so inspirational, what a fantastic trip! The pictures are lovely. I would love to do something like that someday. :)

Janice Grinyer said...

that is a good trip - loved your photos - love the shoreline ones esp!

the book looks interesting - restoration never comes cheap nor without its perils!