Day 1: Edmonds to Prevost Harbor

May 28, 2022

Edmonds to Prevost Harbor: 82 miles.

I thought I would be able to publish updates somewhat as they happened, turns out, it won’t be quite so live. Taking care of Ellen is a full time job on the boat. She naps on me. She goes to bed when we all do, and making sure she safe takes all my attention. I had hopes of writing a post everyday just as it was happening, turns out I will just be able to do it here and there. I’ll be sure to still publish our trip all in order, but it will probably end up being in chunks of time and a few days late. We’ve all been able to journal here and there, so that will help keep everything fresh. Currently we are taking a breather in a hotel room in Ketchikan Alaska!

We left Edmonds Saturday May 28, 2022. Chris launched the boat that morning, while we let the kids sleep in a little longer and I finished getting last minute things in order. When the boat was launched, Chris came back and picked us up. My cousin Trenton who was staying with us, and watching the house while we were gone was kind enough to drop is all off, he then drove the car back to the house so we didn’t have to worry about parking, it really worked out perfectly.

As we got out of the car I was holding Ellen’s hand and tripped her and she landed flat on her back right into a puddle. Before we even made it to the boat she needed an outfit change. We pushed off the dock just before 9:00 AM. We went about 2 minutes before Chris realized that the prop he had on the boat wasn’t quite the right size. (On our check out trip Chris thought a different size would be a bit better. He debated whether or not to change it, and decided to change it right before we left.) We went back to the marina and Chris spent about 15 minutes swapping it back to the original.

We made it about 15 minutes and then we saw our first whale of the trip! An Orca was hanging around some fishermen, it was super close to one boat. It was fun to watch it swim around for awhile. Its always so fun to see a whale, especially so early on our adventure! A bit later we saw a minke whale. We have been seeing a lot of whales in the area lately, but it was our first time seeing a minke. We also saw a sea loin, seals, and harbor porpoises,

As we were coming into the San Juan Islands, Game and Fish came and stopped us to let us know a big pod of orcas were feeding around the islands. We could go further out into the channel, or we could proceed at 7 knots and watch them. We decided to slow it down and watch the Orcas. There were so many of them, the most we have seen together. We weren’t super close to them, but it was really neat to watch them.

We made it to Roche Harbor around 2:40 PM. It was our first time visiting Roche Harbor. Every time we’ve been to San Juan Island in the past, we’ve just gone to Friday Harbor. Roche Harbor was a lot of fun. We stopped in for dinner/lunch and walked around. The kids were able to play bocce ball with Chris and Ellen and I walk around some more. At 5:45 PM we headed out to Prevost Harbor and dropped anchor around 7:00 PM.

It was a really rough night figuring out how to sleep with Ellen. We brought a great little porta crib that fits in the boat, but it was still lightish when we went to bed and since she could see everyone she wanted to be with everyone. I tried pulling her in with me and the kids, but she just wanted to play. She was so rowdy and chatty. If we weren’t so tired it would have been so funny. Chris finally took her with him and got her to fall asleep. Once she was asleep he put her in her bed and she slept great. The first few nights away I have a harder time sleeping and this was no exception.

Prevost Harbor is a great anchoring spot in the San Juan Islands. we went into a little inlet that felt really private. A lot of other boats were anchored in the more open areas, but our spot was pretty secluded. It was a perfect place to stop before crossing into Canada the next morning.

Ryan’s thoughts form the Day: First day to Alaska. We made it 80 miles today. Lots of whales and bocce ball and ice cream!!!!

Lillian’s thoughts from the day: Day 1 we just started… 20 min in orcas, minke whale. Then Police stop us to say slow down. There is a big pod of orcas. Saw a ton of orcas. On land I had a cheeseburger, french fries, and ice cream. I got to play a game called bocce ball (me and Ryan tied).

Heading out on our home for the next several months
Outfit Number 2
Our Kitchen
View of the back of the boat. Some of the bulkier items live here.
Ellen’s pants drying
Ellen’s shirt drying
The big kids and I sleep in there.
Chris changing the Prop
This is how nap time goes. It works surprisingly well.
Night time set up

One of the many Orcas we saw on our first day.

View from our anchorage at Prevost Harbor


  1. Grandma and Grandpa Pursley

    This is going to be fun for all of us. Thank you so much for sharing!.. Love you all so much

  2. Michelle Pursley

    Thank you for taking us along with you. I love the pictures and you are a writer just like your aunt Peggy.

  3. G&G Tanner

    Thanks so much for sharing your adventures. We wish we were with you. A voyage you will never forget.

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