Tuesday, August 29, 2006

The Broken Group

Turtle Bay Anchorage, Barkley Sound, B.C.
For the past week, we have been anchored in Barkley Sound, among the cluster of islands known as the Broken Group. Barkley Sound is a big, very open bay cut out of the coast of Vancouver Island, roughly square in shape. The Broken Group sits in the middle of the sound, and its westernmost islands are open to the swell or waves coming in off the Pacific. But as you move deeper into the islands and the coves between them, there is excellent shelter.Broken in this case seems to refer to the islands themselves. There are a few big islands, and, clustered together, they make good sized harbors. But every big island seems to be surrounded by dozens of smaller islets, and the islets surrounded by groups of rocks and reefs and sandspits. This is kayaker’s heaven – an infinite array of passages and short crossings and good beaches and wooded uplands for landing and camping. There are more kayakers here than we have ever seen in any one place – maybe a hundred or more pass by our anchored boat or pass us as we paddle ourselves – each day.


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