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Old 05-18-2013, 07:49 PM   #1
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Wanted: Seasonal Moorage Suggestions for Desolation Sound & Area

I'm planning on running my 48' pilothouse from Puget Sound up to Desolation Sound this summer. I'll have to leave her twice, for about 2.5 weeks each time: Once in early August and again in mid-Sept.

I'll also need to get to SEA from wherever I leave the boat, which shouldn't be a problem as long as I give myself enough time.

Campbell River looks like a convenient spot with multiple marinas, easy provisioning, services, etc. I'm not comfy leaving her at anchor, so am interested only in marina/private slip options.

I'd love to hear suggestions on good places to leave the boat, pitfalls to watch out for, how best to find slip options (Craigslist) etc.

Thanks for the help,
Mary
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Old 05-18-2013, 08:06 PM   #2
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Campbell River looks like a convenient spot with multiple marinas, easy provisioning, services, etc.
If campbell River is full, you might try April Point which is right across the water from Campbell River. Full Service Marina on Quadra Island, BC in the Discovery Passage
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Old 05-19-2013, 01:38 AM   #3
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Campbell River, Comox and Powell River are the obvious choices with airports. None have a direct flight to SEA.

The municipal marina in Powell River would likely be able to accommodate you in the South Harbour, although you wouldn't have an assigned slip. If you haven't been, or havenít been there recently, the South Harbour has doubled in size and has new facilities.

Powell River is right between Desolation and Jervis, so it would be convenient. There is 4 (5 in the summer) flights per day from Vancouver that are reasonable (~$100) if you book ahead on Pacific Coastal. The flight takes 25 minutes. The airport is maybe 3kms from the harbour. If you choose to drive, driving time is about 5.5 hours out of Vancouver, with two connecting ferries. I mention this because people underestimate the time it takes to get here, even though the distance isnít far.
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Old 05-19-2013, 07:01 PM   #4
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Check out Kenmore Air for lights to/from Campbell River/Desolation Sound and Kenmore, WA.

http://www.kenmoreair.com/Campbell-River-Schedule
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Old 05-19-2013, 07:44 PM   #5
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I'm sitting here in Discovery Harbour Marina in Campbell River as we speak, and it would meet all of your requirements I think.

They do cater to a huge transient moorage crowd in the summer, so I would expect you should have room, September for sure. Power (mostly 30 amp) and water of course.

If you call them, ask to speak to Tara, the Harbour Master, as she is best able to accommodate you.

The marina has the usual shower & laundry facilities, which are very clean & tidy.

And it is also adjacent to a good mall with a large Superstore, Starbucks, Staples, Canadian Tire, and other specialty shops. A liquor store of course. And restaurants that overlook the water.

Plus there is a well equipped boatyard (Ocean Pacific) and chandlery.

Comox is a 30 minute taxi ride, and has flights via Westjet & Air Canada, although I don't know their schedules. The Campbell River Airport also has flights but I know nothing about them.

The marina is about 3 hours @ 8 knots from a number of excellent anchorages in Desolation Sound.

I hope this helps!
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Old 05-19-2013, 09:17 PM   #6
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The marina is about 3 hours @ 8 knots from a number of excellent anchorages in Desolation Sound.
Now, that's an understatement.... The cruising is terrific in that area!
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:24 AM   #7
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Now, that's an understatement.... The cruising is terrific in that area!
You're so right Walt! The nearest anchorages are 3 hours away, but they are just the beginning.
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:48 AM   #8
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Thank you for the great information! I'm so excited to get going that I can't stand it. This is my first season as a boat owner and cruising up to Desolation Sound will either make me or break me - and I'm betting on "make me". I'm no speed hound and plan on taking my time to explore the nooks & crannies. The tips & hints from TrawlerForum readers are a real treasure. )
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:19 AM   #9
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Well Mary, I don't think you could have chosen a better starting point than Desolation Sound! The scenery is terrific (to quote Walt), there are many very protected anchorages so you can safely practice your anchoring skills, and the crowds are very tolerable. I'm sure it will be a make, not break, experience!
We may run - gently I hope - into each other out there, you never know.
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Old 05-20-2013, 04:46 AM   #10
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Discovery Harbour Marina will charge only by the foot per night, presently $.64 on their website.
Taku Resort on Quadra, is $1.50 to put that into perspective.
April Point is only for registered guests, so not available for what you want, besides being much more expensive.
Check Bliss Landing and the Laughing Oyster on Okeover Inlet (don't know if they have enough room for what you want).
The gov't dock in Cortez Bay is a possibility, $.75 per night (may have changed since I last checked) and regular Kenmore Float service to Seattle.
Comox has lots of possibility too, great gov't or local marinas, but busy, so you would need to book well ahead.
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Old 05-20-2013, 07:56 AM   #11
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Bliss will usually do long term in the off season. Okeover is a Goverment dock. I wouldn't recommend either due to access to an airport. Taku wuld be a ferry and a drive away too.

Unless you chartered a float plane. $$$

I forgot about Kenmore air. I think they go direct to Campbell River too in season.
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Old 05-20-2013, 11:24 AM   #12
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Thank you for the great information! I'm so excited to get going that I can't stand it. This is my first season as a boat owner and cruising up to Desolation Sound will either make me or break me - and I'm betting on "make me". I'm no speed hound and plan on taking my time to explore the nooks & crannies. The tips & hints from TrawlerForum readers are a real treasure. )
I suggust you check into getting a stern line if you plan on staying in these crowded areas. If you can't do a stern tie to shore you will be limited in where you can spend the night. I'm thinking that at least half the anchourages in Desolation require a stern line.

Ron
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Old 05-20-2013, 12:49 PM   #13
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I suggust you check into getting a stern line if you plan on staying in these crowded areas. If you can't do a stern tie to shore you will be limited in where you can spend the night. I'm thinking that at least half the anchourages in Desolation require a stern line.

Ron
Good idea. I have a 600' spool of braided polypropylene, as do most others in the area. Poly is nice as it is usually bright colored and it floats so transiting dinghies can see it.
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:06 PM   #14
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AKMary,

Canada has rules about a non-Canadian leaving a boat in Canada while the owner leaves the country. As I recall, the boat has to be left with a marina that is going to do work on the vessel.

Be sure to call Canada Customs and find out. Otherwise, you could return to find your boat impounded.
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:11 PM   #15
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AKMary,

Canada has rules about a non-Canadian leaving a boat in Canada while the owner leaves the country. As I recall, the boat has to be left with a marina that is going to do work on the vessel.

Be sure to call Canada Customs and find out. Otherwise, you could return to find your boat impounded.
Interesting thought. I see a few American vessels moored here over the winter so there must be a way to do it. I'll inquire tomorrow when the marina office is open.
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:36 PM   #16
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If you send me you email address I will email you a Canadian marina directly. I know itís in my two feet stack of misc boating stuff. Its been about two years since I used it so it should be about 1 foot down.
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:45 PM   #17
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AKMary,

Canada has rules about a non-Canadian leaving a boat in Canada while the owner leaves the country. As I recall, the boat has to be left with a marina that is going to do work on the vessel.

Be sure to call Canada Customs and find out. Otherwise, you could return to find your boat impounded.
I think the OP is talking about leaving her boat in Canada for a couple of weeks at a time so I doubt that she has to worry about it being "seized and impounded"
Lots of people do it regularly. it's no big deal.
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Old 05-20-2013, 07:57 PM   #18
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While it's 'no big deal' to a Canadian, it could be a very big deal to a non-Canadian. Here is a quote from Canada Customs D2-1-1 - Temporary Importation of Baggage and Conveyances by Non-Residents
Quote:
Retention of Foreign Pleasure Craft in Canada

56. Owners are advised that operational checks are made from time to time at marina and service outlet locations. Non duty and tax paid pleasure craft, imported by visitors and remaining in Canada without being documented on a Form E99 or a Form E29B may be seized and forfeited under the Customs Act.
If its my boat that could be 'seized and forfeited' I would contact Canada Customs to be sure I understand what is required to leave my boat in Canada.
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Old 05-20-2013, 11:06 PM   #19
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Larry

I can only agree that it is always good to err on the side of caution, especially when dealing with Customs and Immigration authorities who have the power to ruin your day and make your life very difficult.

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Old 05-21-2013, 02:41 AM   #20
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moorage

check out Quadra island, it's right next to Campbell river (short ferry ride) maybe not so crowded. rates were reasonable too.
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