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Old 07-12-2016, 14:01   #16
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

You won't get the exchange rate discount, but consider Bellingham... every service / business you could want, lots going on socially especially over in Fairhaven which has lots to do in dark winter months.

Seaview North is full service boat yard with all the services when you need them but they allow DIY work in their yard, Colony Wharf is more of a DIY yard with access to independent contractors who can help with things you might need help with.
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Old 07-12-2016, 14:53   #17
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

Sorry but I can't recommend Canoe Cove if you are going to have any work done by them --- work I had done there 10 years ago was done OK but too many surprises on what they charged --also they placed a surcharge on any work done by outside contractors--was fine as a marina---

Sidney BC is an interesting funky town and yes there isn't a lot of after-hours night life but it does have a bunch of interesting restaurants and boutiques and the people are generally pretty friendly---there are many marinas in the Sidney area but you will need a car (10-15 minute drive to Sidney) although in the summer we enjoyed biking into town--- in winter things are generally fairly slow ---

We refitted our boat in Sidney and there were many, many nearby trades and suppliers (sail lofts, riggers, welders, canvas and upholstery fabricators, paint stores, marine stores, marine wood suppliers etc) who we successfully used but you will need a car

You currently will get a HUGE exchange rate advantage as the US dollar is currently buys you about $1.32 Canadian dollar.

Lastly, the Canadian BC/PNW area is a great area for cruising ---many neat anchorages and small ports and tourist attractions which you can take years to sample --unfortunately we left for Mexico too soon without sampling nearly enough of them

Hope that helps
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Old 09-12-2016, 04:30   #18
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

Thanks for all this useful information. It seems that we will have to add a car to the refit budget! For the record our NWP boat is not a Catamaran. We will have to live aboard while we refit, that was why we were looking for an area that has an active sailing or live-aboard community during the winter months. If I ask the question in another way: where is the biggest winter live - aboard community in WA or BC?
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Old 09-12-2016, 09:21   #19
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

For WA, I would have to say the largest number of live aboards is in Shilshole Marina, but live aboard spots are hard to get. It is right next to Seaview Marine which has haulout facilities but I don't believe you can stay on your boat while it is out of the water. Many people work on their boat while they live on board here. The Ballard neighborhood of Seattle is within easy walking distance and has a lot of activity.

I have never lived in BC. We bought our first boat on Granville Island in Vancouver and that was a very neat place, but I don't know if you can live aboard there or do work on your boat.
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Old 09-12-2016, 10:02   #20
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

We lived aboard in Sidney for a few years prepping our boat for cruising with one of us working full time. Everything *does* close early and our nickname for the town was "newly wed or nearly dead" - everyone was pushing a stroller either to help them walk or to walk with their babies.

However, it is a very walkable town with a surprising number of tasty eateries (eat at Toast!) and the nearby marine chandleries are excellent. If you want to really go out, you drive to Victoria. I used the library (also walkable) and there are several grocery stores.

It was a great prep place for us and not having a ton of evening options kept us on budget!
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Old 09-12-2016, 10:07   #21
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

Granville Island is neat indeed, and right next to Burrard Civic Marina right in downtown Vancouver. There are several other marinas right in False Creek which is right next the city centre, but to the best of my current knowledge none of them accept live-aboards any more. Competition for slips is fierce for obvious reasons, and the waiting lists are commensurately long.

Within Vancouver Harbour itself there are several marinas, but, again, I doubt that, being new and "modern" and therefore hoity-toity, they will accept live-aboards. We all know that live-aboards lower the tone of the neighbourhood, don't we :-)?

Further up Burrard Inlet there are also several marinas, but the same comments apply.

Within Vancouver Harbour sailing is not permtted - for good reason - and from the marinas there and particularly from those further up the inlet it's a long haul out to sailing water in English Bay, and even further to the Salish Sea.

Best bet for a wanna-be live-aboard around Vancouver is up the river at Shelter Island - "the Graveyard of Boats" - although SI is also moving "up-scale". Westham Island in the estuary might also be a possibility.

I assume you are of US nationality. You'll be most welcome here, but mind that you satisfy all Canadian requirements in respect of visas etc. Visitor privileges for "foreign nationals" including US citizens are doled out in dollops of six months. That statement simplifies the situation too much, obviously, but you get the picture.

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Old 09-12-2016, 10:19   #22
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

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Originally Posted by CatCouple View Post
...............We will have to live aboard while we refit, that was why we were looking for an area that has an active sailing or live-aboard community during the winter months. If I ask the question in another way: where is the biggest winter live - aboard community in WA or BC?
Question: you're refitting in the winter, why do you need company? You might be a tad busy! What "advantages" do you think a "liveaboard" community would provide you?

If it was me, I'd find the very best yard with close-by services and get to work. Larger issues would be budget, including whether or not a car was required, and the cost of the marina. For example, compare Canoe Cove and close by services and a car to Sidney itself, no car required but a pricier marina, can walk to everything, supermarket two minutes by foot away.

These are things I'd look at.
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Old 10-12-2016, 11:01   #23
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

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Originally Posted by TrentePieds View Post
Granville Island is neat indeed, and right next to Burrard Civic Marina right in downtown Vancouver. There are several other marinas right in False Creek which is right next the city centre, but to the best of my current knowledge none of them accept live-aboards any more. Competition for slips is fierce for obvious reasons, and the waiting lists are commensurately long.

Within Vancouver Harbour itself there are several marinas, but, again, I doubt that, being new and "modern" and therefore hoity-toity, they will accept live-aboards. We all know that live-aboards lower the tone of the neighbourhood, don't we :-)?

Further up Burrard Inlet there are also several marinas, but the same comments apply.

Within Vancouver Harbour sailing is not permtted - for good reason - and from the marinas there and particularly from those further up the inlet it's a long haul out to sailing water in English Bay, and even further to the Salish Sea.

Best bet for a wanna-be live-aboard around Vancouver is up the river at Shelter Island - "the Graveyard of Boats" - although SI is also moving "up-scale". Westham Island in the estuary might also be a possibility.

I assume you are of US nationality. You'll be most welcome here, but mind that you satisfy all Canadian requirements in respect of visas etc. Visitor privileges for "foreign nationals" including US citizens are doled out in dollops of six months. That statement simplifies the situation too much, obviously, but you get the picture.

TrentePieds
British actually but the same rules and hopefully welcome apply

Thanks for the information we will check it out. Not sure what constitutes liveaboard over there I expect we would be on board end of Jan to end April.
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Old 10-12-2016, 11:12   #24
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

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Question: you're refitting in the winter, why do you need company? You might be a tad busy! What "advantages" do you think a "liveaboard" community would provide you?

.
Thats exactly what Mrs CC wants to avoid

Having travelled by yacht from the Middle East to the Americas over the last 18 months we realise the importance of social activity as part of long term cruising. We are musicians and that opens a lot of doors but living in an empty marina is not appealing in terms of a social life, personal safety, boat security local knowledge base etc. The company of like minded people is a critical ingredient in our long term world cruising plans.
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Old 10-12-2016, 11:49   #25
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

Just how extensive is your refit? If you need haulout and access to lots of help then Victoria is probably out, but after spending a winter there I can say that it is a great community and I'd spend another winter there in an instant. The winter's are the mildest in all the PNW, the tourists almost completely absent and the winter moorage rate (for living downtown, and all its amenities) is not unreasonable.

There is easy to access whatever you need without a car (transit is great). Sidney is an easy day sail away. There are tons of trades available although you might pay a premium for them to drive down from Sidney. Check out Actel's blog (http://www.gudgeonblog.ca/moving-to-...ling-the-mast/) for some of the places he has worked with doing his refit.

Sure, it's not the best place from a boat work perspective, but it's not that bad, and the other benefits are awesome. It all depends on your balance...

P.S. I made a map with local services etc... http://neverforever.ca/2016/02/a-vis...e-to-victoria/
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Old 11-12-2016, 14:01   #26
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Re: Pacific Northwest is Sidney best for work and play ?

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Originally Posted by Macblaze View Post
Just how extensive is your refit? If you need haulout and access to lots of help then Victoria is probably out, but after spending a winter there I can say that it is a great community and I'd spend another winter there in an instant. The winter's are the mildest in all the PNW, the tourists almost completely absent and the winter moorage rate (for living downtown, and all its amenities) is not unreasonable.

There is easy to access whatever you need without a car (transit is great). Sidney is an easy day sail away. There are tons of trades available although you might pay a premium for them to drive down from Sidney. Check out Actel's blog (Moving to Sooke and pulling the mast – Life on Gudgeon) for some of the places he has worked with doing his refit.

Sure, it's not the best place from a boat work perspective, but it's not that bad, and the other benefits are awesome. It all depends on your balance...

P.S. I made a map with local services etc... http://neverforever.ca/2016/02/a-vis...e-to-victoria/
wow what a great resource will definitely be using the guide, Victoria looks like a good option, might have a berth in Cowichan bay so with a car an easy ride downtown
thanks
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