One of our favourite cruising destinations is Jedediah Island. Located in the Strait of Georgia between Lasqueti Island and Texada Island, this former home to Mary and Al Palmer is now a Provincial marine park. Boaters who visit this island are can glimpse what life was like for the Palmers as they walk the island’s trails through mature forest, open fields and a large orchard. Mary Palmer’s account of her life on the island in Jedediah Days: One Woman’s Island Paradise is a thoroughly enjoyable read.
Feral sheep who were once members of the Palmer’s flock roam the island. In late fall, when a few apples remain at the top of the fruit trees, visiting boaters who knock apples out of the trees will find themselves surrounded by these wily sheep – conditioned to the sound of falling apples on the hard ground.
As frequent visitors to Jedediah, we know where to spot the very unusual goats that reside here. Speculation is that these goats are descendants from goats left by Spanish explorers. When the opportunity allowed, early explorers dropped off goats on various islands to graze. It is thought that a few goats missed the boat – literally and now a small herd exists on Jedediah Island.
Our boat with its cut-away keel, likes to swing when at anchor, so we opt to anchor in White Rock Bay as opposed to Deep Bay where a stern-tie is required. Watch for the drying reef at the southwestern edge of the bay. Anchorage can be found at the opening of Home Bay for shallow draft boats, but the bay itself dries at low tide.
It can get quite lumpy at the bottom end of Jedediah when tide opposes wind. We abandoned our plans to head to Thormanby Islands on one trip when steep, stacked waves made for an unsafe passage. Read your charts to avoid several drying rocks in the area.
A trip to Jedediah is like stepping back in time. Thanks to the Palmers who sold the island for less than it was worth; to the fundraising efforts by the Friends of Jedediah and from a donation from the Dan Culver estate, the rest of us can enjoy this little island paradise.