Jupiter anchored up in Boho Bay in 12 fathoms on another perfect September afternoon after 30 miles navigating the Georgia Strait, much of it through Whiskey Gulf, the Canadian torpedo test range which, happily, was declared inactive that day.
Boho Bay is a large and deep indent on Lasqueti Island which tails off Texada Island, the great interruptor of Georgia Strait tides. A handsome wooden vintage fish boat was our companion in the anchorage. Together we were confined by rocky palisades hung with copses of cedar, spruce and deciduous Madrona trees with their spare orange bark and yearning postures.
Our anchorage afforded exploration by tender and paddle of the surrounding skerries. On a cool, overclouded morning we packed our amphibious gear, launched kayaks and sculled across choppy mile-wide Bull Passage to Deep Bay on Jedediah Island, a Provincial Park.
We landed on a stony scrap of beach, hauled the kayaks above the high water mark and tied them to a washed-up tree stump.
Jedediah, like many islands in the southern environs of the Inside Passage, enjoys a Mediterranean climate, warmer and dryer than indicated by latitude, reposing within the weather shadow of Vancouver Island. This tempered ambience encouraged homesteaders and farmers to settle islands large and small.
Shell middens evidence ancient foraging by First Nations people. During the century after a Crown Grant was issued in 1890, Jedediah supported four owners. It was then sold for a modest price to the province in order to preserve it.
B.C. Parks now maintains easy trails through open forests and meadows, enjoyed by passing boaters in need of stretching their sea-legs. The abandoned homestead, with its still-fruiting orchard and tumble-down barns, enjoys one of the finest aspects imaginable, staring south, and evoking the legacy of doughty souls who called this place home.
Joy to the World
Jedediah has some beach logsThree Dog Night, 1970. Original lyrics.
Hiking there is mighty fine
Barns and sheep once stood around the old homestead
But its no longer in its prime
Now the sailors have a mighty fine time.
Singin’ joy to the world
All the trees have burls now
Joy to the fishes in the deep blue sea
Joy to you and me.