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Old 09-18-2019, 12:54 PM   #1
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Too late for Princess Louisa?

We are in Nanaimo, hunkered down for weather. Headed to Secret Cove tomorrow. What I was wondering is if it would be worth it to go to Princess Louisa now or not? In otherwards even if we get there can you see anything in lowered clouds and rain?

Predict wind shows no weather in the sound, but does the wind kick up there during southerlies? I can plan lay days for weather in the Straights of Georgia, but doubt I will get weather info while in Princess Louisa.


Any locals wanna chime in before the Yank does something stoopid?
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Old 09-18-2019, 12:57 PM   #2
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Welcome aboard. Canít help with your question but wanted to say welcome.
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:06 PM   #3
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You can receive weather info inside Princess Louisa if you have a Garmin InReach. The device offers weather forecasts (but not “marine” forecasts). You could also arrange for a friend to send weather info via text or email to your InReach.

I swear by that device! A few years ago, I was able to help some folks at the PL dock to contact friends who had had a breakdown and then also contact a marina.
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:12 PM   #4
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I would suggest that it is a good time to visit Princess Louisa. Crowds will be less and with recent rainfall the waterfalls should be running much better than in the dry summer months. You'll likely get some breaks in the cloud to see the mountains however there is also something magical about this area with the mist clinging to the hills.
You are correct that you will be unable to get a weather forecast while in the inlet. No VHF or cell service. This makes the trip out somewhat problematic, the wind can really howl down Jervis Inlet. Check a long range forecast before you go in.
Enjoy. Princess Louisa is an amazing place.
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Old 09-18-2019, 01:54 PM   #5
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Wayne, That area...Jervis Inlet, Hotham Sound, the main fiord up to Princess Louisa...is subject to willawas, technically katabatic winds that flow outward from inland mountainous areas downslope into these inlets. We have been blown out of Hotham Sound some years ago late in the season. The winds are not predicted or forecast by the Environment Canada continuous vhf broadcasts. I'm curious if any of the weather modeling apps, like Windy, attempt to forecast these winds, but I doubt it. I'm raising this issue so you're aware of the potential for these winds in that region.
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Old 09-18-2019, 02:15 PM   #6
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My only time visiting Princess Louisa was during grey rainy weather. It was absolutely breathtaking and well worth it.
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Old 09-18-2019, 02:31 PM   #7
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At this time of the year, make your plans and go for it. And be flexible. This time last year I had two buddies come up from Chicago for a trip to Desolation. Everyday they were here there were wind warnings while we motored everywhere. And everywhere the wind never materialized as profoundly as the forecast was predicting.

So wind can vary. Also you are headed into a fjord (inlet?) and they will hold clouds longer than normal. When we were headed to Desolation, I changed plans because these big black nasty clouds were in the inlets of Desolation and after living for more than 30 years in a fjord in North Vancouver, I know those clouds were there for the long haul. So we just changed out agenda. We didn't do what we wanted to do, but we had a great time anyway.

Last piece of advise. Leave now.... right now. Its beautiful and calm out, go for it now, don't live on an agenda when cruising at this time of the year here.
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Old 09-18-2019, 03:13 PM   #8
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Yeah, but your handle isn't "BlueSky".

I was there years ago in rainy cloudy weather and agree it is still beautiful.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreySky View Post
My only time visiting Princess Louisa was during grey rainy weather. It was absolutely breathtaking and well worth it.
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Old 09-18-2019, 03:32 PM   #9
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The problem for weather forecasts here is they cover a large area and they have to take into account the worst which usually is localized. So the weather forecast sounds horrible and it is for that local area but it isn't for many other areas in that forecast coverage.
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Old 09-18-2019, 05:34 PM   #10
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Windy.com is your friend.
Enviro Canada gives only the most broad ranging predictions for North of Nanaimo. That meas that somewhere north of Nanaimo there are conditions that may be as severe as their predictions.
Windy takes all available data and predicts for much more localized areas.
Currently, in Princess Louisa, WIndy shows 4% cloud cover , 1knot winds and the expectation of 1.2 mm of rain in the next 3 days.
Given the time of year, I would go, as it is not likely to ever be better than this.
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Old 09-18-2019, 07:23 PM   #11
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Thanks for the feedback everyone!
I have been using Windy as my main weather app, it looks great on there so hopefully there won't be some weird local weather in Jervis not on the app.


Weird thing is that I am not at all intimidated by taking the boat back down the coast to Portland which is probably statistically more dangerous. Just never cruised fiords before.



Good to hear that it is still worth it in rain/clouds. We will probably head in there on Friday and hope the crap rain forecast for the weekend isn't too bad.


Will post the results here upon return to wifi land.



And thanks much again.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:33 PM   #12
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You like already know this, but a copy of Ports and Passes to give you the currents for the different rapids is going to be important. When you donít have cell service, you need a printed resource. Malibu rapids should be times carefully.
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Old 09-18-2019, 11:14 PM   #13
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skytracker app compliments the windy app. had a look and right now it is clear in PL, no clouds.
However there is bad weather heading there from off the Alaska coast, plenty of rain showing. Forecast say not good again until Wednesday, but forecasts change hourly and as mentioned there is always areas that defy forecasts.
If it was me I would hunker down in Pender harbour until Monday and then head up. You will have cell service and can get an update before moving up.
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Old 09-18-2019, 11:29 PM   #14
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Here we were about 15 years ago in Ketchikan.

Sometime in the winter in one of the many trips we made to the city about 50 miles from where we lived then in Thorne Bay on Clarence Strait. Lincoln Rock is in upper Clarence Strait and I hear it blows 100 at times. That actually was reported to me by a TF member fearing for my safety after reading about the wind at Lincoln Rock.

It usually didn't blow very hard on our trips to Ketchikan but navagation in heavy snow was challenging .. at times. When the weather was actually bad we rode the ferry. But a trip to Princess Louisa Inlet in winter is really that much different than in summer. Just need to watch the weather more closely and be a bit more prepared .. survival wise. And probably most important is to develop the skills to wait out weather. Books, tea or other warm drinks ect.
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Old 09-19-2019, 10:52 AM   #15
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Too late for Princess Louisa?

NW Explorations out of Bellingham is leading a flotilla to Desolation tomorrow with a stop at Princess Louisa. The itinerary is attached. Not sure how many boats are going but there may not be room on the dock when they are there. http://www.nwexplorations.com/wp-con...erary-2019.pdf
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Old 09-19-2019, 12:06 PM   #16
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Welcome abroad.

Go for it! Stay in Pender Harbor then make your way. Time the rapids and you should be fine. NW Expeditions is a concern as the dock maybe full. Get there before them or wait until after. Then again they are a great group and I am sure they will allow you to side tie to them or to you.

If you are thinking of making the run from Neah Bay to Astoria, do it soon as the weather seems to change after the 21st......
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Old 09-19-2019, 12:19 PM   #17
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I agree--go for it with the proper precautions. Should not be very crowded now. A nice stop on the way in or out is Egmont--and visit Sechelt rapids.
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Old 09-19-2019, 01:00 PM   #18
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Dave we must have been in Desolation at roughly the same time last year. I just looked at a pic of my boat moored at the Texada Boat Club dock and it was September 16 and we left Comox September 14. I mentioned above about the wind warning but it rained and drizzled on and off with some nice weather breaks the entire time.

When we got to Squirrel's Cove because of the weather there were very few boats tied up at the wharf in front of the general store so we stayed there for a night, one of the bonuses of less than optimal weather. Paid for power and lost it, took some time to figure out that it wasn't my boat related issues but power out on the entire Cortes Island.
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Old 09-19-2019, 03:40 PM   #19
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ktdtx wrote;
“I agree--go for it with the proper precautions. Should not be very crowded now. A nice stop on the way in or out is Egmont--and visit Sechelt rapids.”

Very much so.
I’ve almost always wanted to go there and haven’t.
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Old 09-22-2019, 08:20 PM   #20
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Well...
It was an awesome trip. Soggy as hell, but very beautiful. The waterfalls were running everywhere and we managed to get enough dry time to hike and kayak the inlet. There was only one other boat on the dock when we got there too. Thanks to all for the encouragement.

Now in Pender Harbor and headed to Vancouver for our next adventure....Anchoring in False Creek!
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