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