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Old 17-11-2012, 12:59   #1
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Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Here in the howe sound area its yucky, rainy, and cold this time of year. Where my boat is parked a quick daysail isnt really an option. The channel needs dredging so its freaky shallow at low tide, so if you go out your out for a tide, i usually sleep aboard and go for the weekend because its out of town and its cold, plus i smoke cigarettes so even if i plunk in a heater and cover her up with a tarp its gonna be cold every time i open up the cabin. To boot the winds at the north side of howe sound get nutty even when its calm elsewhere especially if its nice and sunny.

Theres this girl at work who has done racing for years locally and she got me thinking of boating, talking about going out... I miss my boat. :-( im not really much into racing i prefer to explore and relax. I was out on the boat all summer first summer boating.

What do you do in the offseason when boating isnt really much fun anymore?
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Old 17-11-2012, 14:22   #2
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Dress appropriately.

Get both an electric and catalytic cabin heater. Also a nice big trawler lamp.

Get some good gloves to keep your hands warm and dry.

Pretend you're skiing!

Go sailing and anchor out.

Don't forget the rum and food.

Some of my nicest anchor-outs have been in miserable weather.

Remember that mantra: "It always tastes better on the boat?"

Same thing for bad weather sialing: "It's always warmer down below."

Have fun.
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Old 17-11-2012, 14:57   #3
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

I can relate. Got cold and soaked just going down to check on the boat this morning. Hard to get excited about over nighting and I have a furnace.
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Old 17-11-2012, 15:02   #4
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

What part of Howe Sound are you in?
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Old 17-11-2012, 15:28   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr-canada

What do you do in the offseason when boating isnt really much fun anymore?
I moved to St Thomas where there really isn't an off season.

Many of your countrymen come down here to charter a boat to get their fix when the water up north turns from a liquid to a solid and falls from the sky.
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Old 17-11-2012, 17:09   #6
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Yeah,
Bit of an ugly day in Howe sound today... 40kts. wind and rain. Went down to check on my boat this morning and watch the logs and debris floating by. The 15 foot tides we are getting along with the strong wind is making for a lot of debris in the water.
I sailed a bit last winter. The nice days usually had very little wind but nice views. I prefer to stay of the water when there are gales like today. The amount of logs floating
in the sound here during storms kinda freaks me out.
Yeah, its a bummer they don't dredge that channel. It would be nice to come and go whenever you like.
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Old 17-11-2012, 18:18   #7
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

I think Cold Weather is only a mindset made worse if you restrict it to just a few hours
One of my most favorite sailing memories was spending a month in January, with a terrific girlfriend, cruising as far north as Minstrel Island, from Vancouver.

The first 2 days was the toughest until we acclimatized and perfected our clothing layer systems, then it was the bonus of:
  • Deserted anchorages
  • Pristine Seafood and Shellfish
  • Snow Peak Mountains.
  • Decent Winds
  • Ultra friendly locals who did not treat us as tourists
  • Much Better visibility for Scuba Diving
  • Long romantic nights of snuggling and reading together
Though I was glad I brought a plastic snow shovel along
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Old 17-11-2012, 19:12   #8
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Pelagic is right. Mindset is everything. You have to get out often enough to get used to it, and of course be properly dressed for it and equipped for it.
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Old 19-11-2012, 12:20   #9
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Boat is moored in Squamish. The channel is needing dredging super badly. There's an underwater mountain that even at high tide may go as dry as 6 feet. Going out is pretty well a leap of faith, because you're out for a whole tide, and there's no anchorages or safe harbours accessible in less than 5-6 hours of sailing. To boot the winds in Squamish can get really nutty pretty fast, with my experience I'm a bit nervous to risk winter winds and waves being stuck out there for that long when the ambient air is freezing cold to boot. Plus... crew is an issue. While it could be single handed (it's rigged very well for that) not many think on a 5 degree day, "lets get out on the water" LOL, and with the wind coming through that channel, having one or two people to fend has kept me from clipping other boats at the club many a time.

I'm a pretty adventurous guy, I've done winter camping by backpack many a time before. However usually doing that I find a heavily forested place and spend the first 6 hours after arrival constructing good warm dry shelter and collecting piles and piles of dead & down firewood in order to keep the fire going all day every day. On the boat with the rain at this place there's no shelter at all. I guess I could get a bimini but I haven't because I like the visibility.

But... I'm going to have to go to the boat some time to check on her, ensure it's dry and make sure the lamp I use to keep it dry is still going, check the bilge and ensure that the pilot drains arent filled with debris blown around in the storms with a cockpit filling up with water. Its definitely at least an overnighter, so I'll bring a spaceheater. Maybe I can keep warm during the day by doing some minor repairs.

Big problem is that I smoke. If I heat the cabin and close it and smoke inside, the whole boat will stink like an ashtray; if I open the cabin to smoke outside I lose all the heat in seconds.

I cant wait for spring. ;-)
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Old 19-11-2012, 12:57   #10
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Yup, you have quite distance to go to get to more open water. What type of space heater do you use?
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Old 19-11-2012, 13:18   #11
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

I was just going to get a small ceramic electric one for the cold nights. Doesn't work when I'm not on shore power though. The motor is a two stroke gas outboard, so a kerosene/diesel heater would require a seperate fuel tank.
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Old 19-11-2012, 17:49   #12
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

If you get an oil fired heater, be sure to get one that draws from outside air and exhausts to the outside to reduce CO dangers. Alternately, a solid fuel stove, properly vented and burning wood, coal or charcoal, would work as well, provided you have space for the fuel. You would need to leave a ventilator open for outside air to prevent oxygen depletion.

If you were living aboard during our winters up here, you might want to consider a hydronic system if your boat is large enough.
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Old 19-11-2012, 19:23   #13
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Rather than a light or a small heater to keep the dampness at bay I have been using a 120V dehumidifier I purchased at Canadian Tire. Fits in the sink and is set up to drain into the sink drain. Its been 4 "off seasons" now and the boat stays remarkably dry.

Won't help if you are on board and trying to stay warm but sure makes a difference when the boat is put away.
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Old 19-11-2012, 19:59   #14
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

I couldn’t find what size or type of boat you own, but if you want to comfortably extend your cruising in the wintertime, then some investment for winter sailing should be considered.

Canvas enclosure for cockpit to keep you drier, also becomes your smoking room.
Getting a stove/heater as Astrid recommends will benefit from additional venting into an enclosed cockpit and change the whole experience of living aboard in winter

I agree, your location for day sailing is challenging because of Tides, so why not look at weekend cruises to Horse Shoe Bay, with the idea you might keep her there a week or so before sailing back to Squamish.

That is a tease, because next weekend is a trip up to Pender harbor or over to Nanaimo…. (it is only a mindset…)

I well know the power of a Squamish http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squamish_(wind) so understanding what brings on those conditions and avoiding those is important

Fair winds!
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Old 19-11-2012, 20:35   #15
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Re: Cruising season long gone and a racer at work got me itching to boat

Yes, heading down to Horseshoe Bay would be a weekend sail. I used to live down that way a few years ago.

Quote:
Canvas enclosure for cockpit to keep you drier, also becomes your smoking room.
Getting a stove/heater as Astrid recommends will benefit from additional venting into an enclosed cockpit and change the whole experience of living aboard in winter
Indeed, and it will help keep your drains free of debris as well.
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