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Old 25-03-2011, 12:19   #31
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Stateline NV
Boat: Prior boats: Transpac 49; DeFever 54
Posts: 2,648
Re: Sailing the USA West coast ?

Thanks, capnorv... I've retired to snow country but spent many years in the PNW commercial fishing and towing logs and barges. Not sure where Lake Roosevelt is but familiar with Lake Tahoe. You are right that the Columbia can be pretty calm but it can sure change in a hurry. I've always felt more comfortable in a head on buck than in a following sea. Had a chance to be aboard a Canadian Rescue launch out of Bamfield, Vancouver Island back in the 60's which gave me alot of respect or these folks that do this year in year out... cheers, CP

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Old 25-03-2011, 12:50   #32
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Bainbridge Island Washington on the Salish Sea
Boat: Hardin 45 Voyager Alice B., Gig Harbor 10, Orca 7 1/2 sloop, 16' sea kayak
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Re: Sailing the USA West coast ?

Capt Phil, My mistake, doing the aunts taxes today and didn't catch your state! I was assuming Stateline Idaho, same scrub steppe, different state. Lake Roosevelt is a 125 mile long damming of the Columbia that backs it up to the Canadian border (Grand Coulee dam). Facing danger has always been my favored course.

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Old 25-03-2011, 13:05   #33
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Dublin, Ireland
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Re: Sailing the USA West coast ?

I'm sailing the West Coast at the moment from Vancouver down to the Panama Canal, then the Lee Ward Islands and across the Atlantic home to Ireland. I'm currently in Newport, Or and hoping to get a good weather window on Monday to get down towards San Fran. You can read about my trip here:

I know it's not a sailing type name for my website, but I've spent the last 2.5 years cycling around the world and I was in Mexico heading to Chile when I got a call from a friend back in Ireland who asked me to join him sailing from Canada to home.
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Old 26-03-2011, 00:23   #34
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Pacific NW, sailing the Columbia River, USA
Boat: Gemini 105MC 34 ft hull#753
Posts: 951
Images: 3
Re: Sailing the USA West coast ?

Thanks for the advice on bar crossings. I've been checking a couple of the primary buoy's on line about everyday to get a feel what conditions can be. I just got our 5208 Garmin chartplotter hooked up and we have XM weather with offshore buoy forcast info on it along with 2 day wave perdiciton. We sail a Gemini 105MC and coming across the bar with 2 rudders help along with our centerboards down about half to keep our surfing steady. Usually Gemini's will dip a little water if the bar waves are steep but with a hard dodger and full enclosure were dry plus we carry extra disel to waight the aft and it helps keep the bow up. I used to surf a long board many years ago and have a feel for surfing our cat.

Thanks for bringing up the book by George Benson Crusing the NW coast. Where would I get a copy ?

If you don't mind wearing a swetter on the summer evenings there's lots of crusing in the PNW between the Columbia River and the NW Passage. This years cruse were doing will probably log about 1200 miles, it's 300 miles to the ocean with 4 locks and 300 vertical feet. We live in the eastern Washington desert just up stream of the Snake River confluence where we only get about 8 inches of rain a year and summers are over 100 so we'll be enjoying the cooler Salish Sea weather. We enjoyed sailing up the Columbia last year bringing sv We Be Jammin home sailing along at 12 kt's GPS in 26 kt's of breeze on just the main sail. I can't waite to try out our new screacher sail with it's 420 sq ft.

Wind in my hair and a nice catamaran
Phil & Elaine
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