Even though it is only five meters thick, a fog smothering Fritz Cove totally obscures the water. There could be a pod of killer whales fining up the cove and we would never see them. Without a compass a kayaker would be lost in the soup. But fog is a fickle thing, quick to blind, quick to disappear. No fog will block our view of Lynn Canal when we reach the North Douglas Island beach this morning.
As we walk down the Rain Forest Trail, I think about my times being trapped in fog. Fear was always involved, even when I had a compass and enough time to take bearings before occlusion. The fog took away my ability to identify the direction of sound. It made the air smell like atomized seawater. The relief felt when I suddenly broke into the open almost made it worth it. The worse thing was to be taken by surprise by fog.
The beach path we take after leaving the forest is just wide enough for us to pass without rubbing against the grass lining both sides of it. Rain drops, looking like tiny snow globes, cling to the grass blades. Down beach the low causeway connecting Shaman and Douglas Islands is being buried by the incoming tide. Two hikers, taken by surprise by the flood hesitate at the Shaman side of the causeway. If they delay too long they will be wading through waist-deep waters. Facing facts they start mincing their way toward Douglas Island.