It is hard for us to believe it but we have now entered our final week in Canada. So far, the weather for our departure date of Saturday, Sept 10th and the whole of that weekend is looking quite good. Of course, we are keeping tabs on Hurricane Danielle and Tropical Storm Earl that have been brewing in the Atlantic but, so far, they don’t seem to be too threatening. Still, our eyes stay peeled to the National Hurricane Centre so that we are well aware of anything else developing along our intended route.
Besides weather watching, we are finishing off a few last-minute tasks:
Task One - Updated our navigation charts for both Aquamaps and Navionics
We like the redundancy of having three ways of accessing marine charts for navigating through the waterways – Navionics, Aquamaps and, of course, good old paper. Navionics and Aquamaps are both electronic chart systems, which we prefer. They are updated far more regularly than the paper and the GPS integration allows us to know exactly where we are on the waterway. Where does the paper fit into all of this? Well, they are exactly what the doctor ordered for our pre-planning as they give us a better overall view of an area.
Task Two - Switched our phones from our Canadian-only plan to a package that will suit us better as we travel beyond our borders.
We decided to go with a Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) option called Fongo. It is a Canadian company and we were able to port our existing phone numbers over to the new service. Of course, all VOIP systems (think Skype or WhatsApp) require an internet connection of some sort to work (data or wi-fi) so we bought a couple of Canada-US-Mexico data SIM cards so that we weren’t totally dependent on wi-fi. At the end of the day, our little switchover has been almost seamless for our family and friends. And the best part? With Fongo they can always contact us for free (and we can contact them for free) no matter where we are in the world. Fantastic!
Task Three - Built our fender boards to protect our very delicate fibreglass hull from the rough canal walls.
This was all Mike and done quite brilliantly. We are ready!
Oh yeah, and visit with family and friends!
This has really been the highlight of our summer but, in the last two weeks, we have been so humbled by the number of people who have gone out of their way to wish us well, and so many who have reached out to support us in any way they can. People have shared gear, charts, advice, and stories of their southern adventures taken or those coming in the future. Amazing.
Truly, we have loved every moment of these connections – from those reaching out to us through the website or email or stopping by our boat or chatting with us as we walk Ocean. It has been the treasure of this adventure, without a doubt. Yes, we feel that we are leaving for the trip of a lifetime, but we definitely do not feel that we are doing it alone. Besides the two other sailboats that make up our travelling pod of three, we have a whole community of incredible people wishing us well. Geez, that is pretty special. 😊 A big thank you from the crew of Wild Horses!!!
Victoria is a hiker, dog-lover, blog writer and planner extraordinaire. Oh, yeah and she is kind of fond of living on a boat.