Friday, June 10, 2011

Bishop Bay, B.C Mainland, Ursula Channel

Bishop Bay and it's hot springs, although more than 10 miles off the main ferry route, is a popular stop along the inside passage.  The facilities seem to change each year, but the spring continues to provide clear, odorless water at the perfect temperature for soaking.  When we visited in 2009, in addition to the open building that houses the soaking pools, there was also an outhouse, several raised wooden platforms to use for tent bases, and a covered picnic structure.  A wooden boardwalk connected all the various facilities and led back to the ramp and dock.  In 2011 we found that the picnic facility had burned down, taking a portion of the boardwalk with it.  The boardwalk had been replaced for access to the springs but the picnic shelter was still missing. There were also two new moorings at the head of the bay.  The dock was full when we arrived so we chose to use one of the moorings, which are within easy rowing distance to the dock.  The moorings are marked "Use at your own risk", but there is no further information about the setup or it's capacities.  The weather was very calm while we were there so we felt OK using the mooring but it would be nice to have information posted somewhere if you were caught there in bad weather.  Anchoring was possible in the past, although the depths are over 20 meters and the usual anchoring location is where the moorings are now located.  The bay is very deep until very close to shore and free of navigational hazards.
We spotted several orcas feeding in the bay in front of the dock this year, and have seen humpback whales in the bay as well.

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