If someone was unfamiliar with our area and they were asked if they would like to go cruising on the waters of Desolation Sound, they may think twice about visiting a place with a name implying a sort of wretchedness and despondency.
Those who have visited the area wonder whether Captain Vancouver had a strange sense of irony, or perhaps arrived on an abysmal day, resulting in a place with such stunning beauty being given such a miserable name.
Considered one of the West Coast’s premier cruising destinations, the area boasts stunning mountain views, picturesque islands and clear waters abound with life.
It is an area that many visitors flock to each summer, and the Museum at Campbell River and Discovery Marine Safaris are ready to take you there on five dates this summer, starting May 21.
The Museum at Campbell River and Discovery Marine Safaris have partnered to offer historic boat tours to a variety of locations since 2007.
This partnership has become a true success story, with most tours selling out and visitors often returning again and again. This year to accommodate the growth, tours are starting in May and running through to August. “The Historic Boat Tours are a wonderful opportunity to visit areas of the coast that are not easily accessed. To learn about the intriguing history of this area, alongside witnessing the spectacular scenery, makes for a memorable day on the water,” explains Museum Public Programs Manager Ken Blackburn.
The Desolation Sound trip cruises past Hernando, Twin and Mitlenatch Islands, as well as the south end of West Redonda Island. Each of these places has its stories, such as the story of John Manson who purchased Mitlenatch Island in 1892 and for many years wintered a herd of sheep on the island that ranged from about 40 to 80 animals, rowing them as the season changed two at a time in a small rowboat from Cortes Island.
This tour includes lunch at the historic Lund Hotel that features panoramic views of Lund Harbour and Savary Island. The tour costs $175, with a discount available for museum members, and will run May 21, June 11, July 2, July 30 and August 6. Tours to other destinations are also being offered. For more information or to register call 250-287-3103 or visit: crmuseum.ca/historic-boat-tours