There exists a realm within coastal British Columbia where Vancouver Island appears to have tried and failed to quit the mainland and escape into the wide Pacific. Here is found a complexity of islands and channels known as Desolation Sound and the Discovery Islands.
A wilderness web of tidal passages invites exploration today just as it has for all of time.
These passages are often as deep as the surrounding terrain is high, and the ensorcelled waters are coerced by the moon to flow at remarkable speeds through manifold constrictions.
Travel by boat is governed by tidal floods and ebbs, timed for navigation and passage through rapids that are other-times impassable. Water heights and velocities are well documented, but careful attention needs be paid to schedules, narratives and advice.
Dent Island Lodge does not occupy Dent Island, but rather a small outcrop of the mainland, a short but impossible swim across Canoe Pass from the island. This five-star, five-thumbs-up fishing resort, dining destination and marina is recognized as one of the regions finest properties, attracting yachtsmen, fishermen, high fliers, and sailors from far latitudes.
The lodge occupies a prime position in a salt loch close-guarded by four rapids. The surrounding waters are restless, clear, cold and flush with fish and fowl, seal and sea lion.
Jupiter and her crew love the place and visit when near. The camaraderie on the docks encourages lingering. The excellent kitchen all but demands culinary indolence on the part of our onboard chef.
During our recent visit we sally forth in the lodge’s muscular, shallow-draft jet boat to become intimate with the rapids in full flood. We are awed by the immense hydraulic forces at hand – haystack upwellings doming from three hundred foot depths and eddies tightening into bottomless whirlpools rigorously returning water and oxygen to the seabed.
A smorgasbörd of fishy feed is tossed about like a cold low country boil – gustatory gluttony for courageous creatures who circle the turgid fringe.
Observing such opportune foraging, an appetite is formed. We opt for dinner at The Rapids Grill, close, but not too close on the rushing waters of Canoe Pass. Chef Tyrone serves up six exemplary courses showcasing pastoral, arable and angled harvests of local bounty enriched by flawless french inculcations and butter. He is deftly aided by Dawn, with a smile like the sunrise, and a marvelous memory for monikers.
All creatures, ourselves included, strive to satisfy their elemental desires. At Dent, wether on land or at sea, the pickings are rich, revelry ubiquitous and plain pleasures abundant. Wellbeing and contentment rise with every tide.