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Old 03-11-2008, 17:49   #16
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Well its a year to early for me to think about doing..maybe next time.
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Old 03-11-2008, 18:13   #17
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Heh, good!

I have a 16 yo son for crew.
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Old 03-11-2008, 23:09   #18
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Early June works well weather wise and we would enjoy meeting and sailing with all of you if you don't mind seniors on an old motorsailer joining and leaving the group now and then. Our last time around we had fair winds at 10-15 knots every day we sailed on the west side, mostly soldier winds on the inside though. We had to hide out in Waddington bay for three days while it kicked up a bit but it was pretty good sailing that year.
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Old 04-11-2008, 08:21   #19
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We haven't decided on a departure date yet, will probably wait and see how the weather looks in June and decide then. We are finishing off the last major things on our new old boat and hope to do several short cruises this winter and next spring to find out what works and what doesn't. At any rate, I would hope to be underway by July 1 at the latest. John
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Old 04-11-2008, 10:11   #20
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Stages

From the sound of things, those of us interested in going 'round this year would like to do things in a casual way, with no strict dates. One way to do this would be to plan to do "stages", with some specific meet-ups on specific dates and opportunities to network with each other along the way.

When looking at circumnavigating Vancouver Island in a sailboat, the preferred route is anti-clockwise to take advantage of the downwind on the west coast. The opposite is true for motor boats, as I understand it, but I think those of us jumping in here are primarily sailors.

So, with the anti-clockwise route the default, there are several "natural" stages. The San Juan -> Gulf Islands stage, which ends at Dodd Narrows/Nanaimo is the first leg.

The second leg is everything up to the Jungles, so all of Georgia Strait, the major mainland inlets and fjords, and Desolation Sound. There are three routes from these waters into the Jungles - Discovery Passage via Seymour Narrows, Okisollo Channel via Surge Narrows, and Cordero Channel via Yuculta Rapids. Because there are three points of exit we might want to talk about where we'd want to meet up either before or after.

The NE coast of Vancouver leg ends naturally at the Nahwitti Bar, with an obvious end point of Bull Harbour on Hope Island. However, the Island is a reserve and limits who may go ashore. Perhaps one of the several good nearby anchorages would be more welcoming of a gang of sailors, or a final staging at one of the larger ports - Port Hardy, Alert Bay, Port McNeil - would be better?

Once beyond Nahwitti Bar there's a long stretch of wonderful, but without many specific destinations. Winter Harbour is inside Quatsino Sound, excellent anchorage, though not a great supply port. Getting past Brooks Peninsula is often a primary goal for some boats - it has a reputation as a weather/wave bully - and just around its corner is Checleset Bay. From there it's a case of too many great destinations to choose from until you get to Sidney Inlet/Hot Springs Cove. Anyone have particular destinations in mind?

Tofino is an obvious meeting point before jumping 'round to Barkley Sound. A cruise up to Alberni could be a lot of fun, though I don't know of much in way of anchorage having never been. My trips through Juan de Fuca Strait have all been one-shot over-night motoring. I know there are exciting stops on the way, though. Anyone know if one can clear in to the USA at Neah Bay?

At the east end of Juan de Fuca is Victoria, and everything related, or on the US side there's Sequim and Port Townsend. For those of us who will be joining the rally at Nanaimo/Dodd Narrows, we can now putter about in the Gulf Islands/San Juans...

Recap: meetups at:
  1. Nanaimo
  2. Somewhere before/after entering the Jungles such as Campbell River, Waiatt Bay, or Lund?
  3. Bull Harbor, or at a town such as Alert Bay, Port Hardy, Port McNeil.
  4. Winter Harbor
  5. One or more places between
  6. Sidney Inlet/Hot Springs Cove
  7. Tofino
  8. Victoria
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Old 04-11-2008, 10:27   #21
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The stages of the circumnavigation sound great. How much time are we looking at for the stages? I know it has a lot to do with weather, but assume that we will motor in the calms and the passages that we have to make due to tides, and that we will be sailing on the west side and along the Sound.
I still have a job and have to trade/steal and borrow vacation time...
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Old 04-11-2008, 10:31   #22
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Quote:
Anyone know if one can clear in to the USA at Neah Bay?




Yes...its station 3027..may have limited operating schedules. seems out of the way though unless the goal would be to bounce down the peninsula rather then hug the Islands coast line.
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Old 04-11-2008, 15:16   #23
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Never gone all the way around and can't get the time right now but in reguards to clearling back into the US at Neah Bay I have done it several times after cruising along the west coast of Vancouver Island. It's an easy day from Barkley Sound to Neah Bay. My last boat was fairly deep draft (7') so I was nervous about going into Sooke and the next good stopping place was Victoria. At least for me that would have been a very long day from Barkley Sound. So we cleared at Neah Bay then went to Port Angeles or Squim Bay the next day. The facilities at Neah are pretty new and are a BIG improvement over the old docks if it's been a while since you've been there. It can be a problem getting to the docks if there is a fishing season underway but so far we've always made it. Not a lot to do there but the facilities have always been well maintained and the people friendly when we were there.
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Old 04-11-2008, 16:19   #24
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Circumnavigation

If you are going down/up the West Coast of Vancouver Island I have two suggestions of easy stops that are worthwhile. The first is "Friendly Cove" at the mouth of Nootka Sound. There is an (to all intents) abandoned chuch there that has some spectacular stained glass windows that were a gift from the Spanish govt. to the people of British Columbia - to commemerate the "Nootka incident". (Spain and England almost went to war over the trade rights to north west north america). This is a pertainent link to the subject and area.

Yuquot (Friendly Cove), British Columbia, Canada

The Second stop I would sugest is Kyuquot - a wee village just south of Brooks Peninsula. The village itself is pretty unique what with having only water, and air access but for me the big draw is large colonies of Sea Otters that live in the kelp beds just outside of town. If you are lucky you may even see an albino otter - there used to be acouple of them living in that population when we fished and did otter research in that area .
Link to Kyuquot: Kyuquot

When you are transiting the area between Hot Springs Cove and Tofino keep you eyes open for Grey Whales: there are usually at least a couple which sort of homestead the are all summer.

If you are feeling particularly adventurous when you are circumnavigating you may want to consider going out to Triangle Island at the end of the Scott Island chain at the top of Vancouver Island - It is a world heritige bird refuge and there are always LOTS of birds and mammals. It truly is a very special place. A word of caution though is that there is limited protected anchorage area and landing on Triangle itself is supposed to be off limits. There are Grey and Sperm whales in this area . (It is off topic but is perhaps an interesting anecdote: The commercial halibut fishermen of this area and up off the Queen Charlottes are having problems with the sperm whales. The whales hear the halibut ground line being haused back though the hydralic shiv and treat it like a dinner bell! The whales then come along and suck the halibut off the line as it is being pulled up off the bottom.)
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Old 04-11-2008, 16:21   #25
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I'm going to take a stab at estimating time, but my assumptions are perfect calm and motoring at approximately 5 kt.

  1. Deadman Island (south entrance to San Juan Channel) to Nanaimo, including a stop at Bedwell Harbor (Poet's Cove), approximately 63 nm, 12+ hours underway. Probably 2 days.
  2. Nanaimo to: a) Gowland Harbor, just south of Seymour Narrows is approximately 80 nm, 16 hours underway. Probably three days. b) Waiatt Bay on Okisollo Channel north of Surge Narrows is approximately 90 nm, 18 hours underway. Again, probably 3 days. c) Read Island General Store, approximately 85 nm, 17 hours underway. Again, probably 3 days. For Cordero Channel by way of Yuculta Rapids this may be the most convenient staging point before hand, but it does involve heading out via Whiterock Passage which has a local nickname of "propeller alley" due to its narrowness.
  3. Because of the varied starting points, it's hard to give a number to Bull Harbor, but a rough estimate of the Johnstone Strait route, without side trips, is 125 nm, 25 hours underway, roughly 3-4 days. This is where timing can be everything, as my log shows only 19 hours. Either that or I missed a day worth of motoring in there somewhere.
  4. From Bull Harbor to Winter Harbor comes in around 57 nm, 11.5 hours, which I know can be easily done in a single day and still be early enough to see if the resort restaurant will feed you. Assuming the tide you want is an early start.
  5. TBD
  6. From Winter Harbor to Sidney Inlet is 108 nm, roughly 22 hours, approximately 3 days.
  7. From the hot springs to Tofino is about 21 nm, 4+ hours or an easy day; you can try some of the back routes to take your time. (I'm trying to find where the micro-bay that I stayed in is hidden... it might be the teeny indent protected by islets just south of Bacchante Bay. When I was there 3 years ago there was a float building which I think was a resort or restaurant.)
  8. Tofino to Barkley Sound/Uclulet is 26 nm, an easy day again. But from Tofino to Victoria is 120 nm, 125 or so to Oak Harbor. 14+ hours underway, although there's no way to avoid a change of the tide en route. I've never broken this trip up, which was why I was thinking about clearing in at Neah Bay. There's a trail and bridge to an Islet for a great view of Cape Flattery there. Haven't seen the new docks.
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Old 05-11-2008, 11:12   #26
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Amgine,
Thank you very much for the est. times. I have about 3 weeks to play with and I was wondering if I should consider a circumnavigation around the island. It sounds like a can do if I plan it carefully and I am lucky with the weather. Alot will depend on what kind of crew I end up with. I don't think I am going out in the Pacific with my wife as first mate.
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Old 05-11-2008, 11:36   #27
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Simplistic...

Remember, those were very simplistic estimates based on course distances and a base speed. There are far too many variables I left out, like weather, tide/current state, weather, fuel economy/availability, weather... ::

My trip 'round was accomplished in 22 days, with 2 layovers of 3 days, and 2 one-day layovers for weather. I didn't get much sightseeing done, and that's my biggest regret. I should have taken time to smell the tidal flats.
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Old 05-11-2008, 11:42   #28
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OOPS!

I typoed for #8 Tofino to Victoria. That should be 24+ hours motoring, not 14+ hours! It's rather a difference. When I did it I continued on to Point Roberts Marina, another 8-10 hours making for a long passage...
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Old 05-11-2008, 13:38   #29
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It seems like that (not spending enough time) would be a big mistake. Perhaps I will spend some time in the San Juans and around the bottom of the island to get the feel of the place.
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Old 05-11-2008, 21:52   #30
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I was also wanting to do this trip. I felt it would need 5 to 6 weeks but I wanted to start mid July.
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