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Old 08-14-2020, 08:50 PM   #1
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Stern line crazy in the PNW?

Went to our second anchor on Lumi Island. We set the hook at 3:1 and were one of 3 boats there all day. At 1800, 4 boats come into the anchorage and everybody does this 100 yellow line to the shore thing off their sterns. Im swinging in a 40 circle having no stern tie to shore. Am I the bad guy when I announce to the fellow 1 boat length away that I am swinging on the hook and Ive been here all day? My wife went koo-koo.
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Old 08-14-2020, 09:05 PM   #2
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I dont have any experience with stern lines but i would think if a boat is on anchor and a new person arrives it would be up to the new person to consider his own anchoring plan so as not to interfere with and other boats. It seems to me that using a stern line would be used when your in a congested location and need to keep your vessel in place so as not to interfere with other boats on the hook. Do you think they are using a stern line to maintain a view or something? i would think they would have considered how your boat was anchored when they set the hook.
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Old 08-14-2020, 09:16 PM   #3
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How did the issue resolve? Maybe they could have set a line for you? Otherwise was there a local convention to do the stern tie? What did the other 3 boats that where there earlier do?
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Old 08-14-2020, 09:26 PM   #4
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You should do the stern line to shore. In July and August there is not enough anchorage for some one to hog up the place. With the boarder closed we need to be extra sensitive to the lack of space and take extra effort to make room.
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Old 08-14-2020, 09:38 PM   #5
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In the PNW I understand that is the way most anchor so I would follow suit and get a stern line. There have been quite a few threads about what to use for that line.
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Old 08-14-2020, 09:41 PM   #6
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As this was our second anchor trip, ok we learned something. A bigger yacht came in after everyone was established and dropped his hook in the middle of the anchorage. He of course spun around like we did. When I saw a 24’ trailer boat do it, I said they know something I don’t. So I get a stern line or anchor to swing farther out.
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Old 08-14-2020, 10:18 PM   #7
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dave
Was the issue you didn't have enough scope? I do understand anchorages can get crowded and that is part of the fun but it seems confusing if folks there are on the hook without stern lines then others come in with stern lines whats the end game?
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Old 08-14-2020, 10:20 PM   #8
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Dave, its not you.

Pretty sure I saw those 4 in Sucia & Prevost last couple days. You're not the problem. Likely has been their spot past times.

Yeah, it can get crowded out here this season, but still no reason to crowd onto you.
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Old 08-14-2020, 10:28 PM   #9
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I'm guessing that you were in Inati Bay. Yeah, it's a local thing there.
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Old 08-14-2020, 10:29 PM   #10
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If Anson is correct about the location, then I stand corrected, sort of.

FWIW, stern ties are *not* a thing in the PacNW. They are a thing in parts of upper BC where drop offs are steep (Princess Louisa) and/or anchorages are crowded (Desolation). I don’t recall ever seeing stern ties in the San Juans or in South Sound. Even if stern ties are a thing in this location, you have know way of knowing local customs unless someone helps you understand. In my opinion the new arrivals should have showed the courtesy to make contact with you before they did their thing. Not knowing local customs you were under no obligation to stern tie and you weren’t hogging space. If many other boats were stern tied in a crowded anchorage and you entered late then the burden is on you to avoid swinging into other boats. In any case, a dialog should have taken place before the newcomers planted their flag.
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Old 08-14-2020, 10:45 PM   #11
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The rule of thumb is first in determines the anchor technique, others in follow the same. This is really true where not many anchor. In traditional locations as mentioned in the above post in Desolation and other places in BC, stern ties often rules so that more boats can anchor.

Us introverts look for smaller places to gunkhole.
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Old 08-15-2020, 10:39 AM   #12
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Just as a side-bar comment on Inati Bay, Lummi Island, the Bellingham yacht club owns the land surrounding the bay. I'm guessing that the stern-tying is their preference to maximize the number of their boats that can be in there, even though they don't own the seabed in the bay.
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Old 08-15-2020, 10:52 AM   #13
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RSN48 is correct. The later arriving boats must not interfere with the previously anchored boats. They need to adapt or go elsewhere, or ask the earlier boat to make some sort of change that would be conducive to everyone (that last would rarely happen).

There are not only some boaters who don't know or care about this really common sense "rule", but this year there seems to be a large number of "new' boaters.
Earlier this summer, we arrived in Prideaux Haven (main part) to find a fair amount of room. I decided to try out an anchor buoy for the first time, and put out about 3.5-1 scope for the high tide mark also taking into account the height above the water to the anchor platform while free swinging like the vast majority of previous boats. No trouble for 2 full days. Then this one guy comes in and proceeds to drop his anchor within a few feet of my marked anchor, and then backs over the buoy. I yelled at him (not angry only to be heard over his idling engines) about my buoy being under his swim grid and that he might not want to tangle his props. He told me not to worry as he was going to stern tie. He was anchored well over 150 yards from the shore. Then he sent one male crew member ashore with a "non-floating dark coloured line' in a soft floored inflatable dinghy rowing the line ashore. He got to within about 100 feet of shore when he ran out of line. The skipper then yelled to him to row harder to "pull the 35 foot" main boat over to shore. The whole process took over 1.5 hours, and they ended up adding in a second line (added length) and being tied about 90 yards from shore at an angle.

Another boater who was stern tied a bit further down, went over and informed them that what they had done was dangerous to other boaters, especially kayakers, dinghies, etc. All was quiet at this point, and I heard the "offending" boater blame my anchor float for all of his problems??? This, even though there were at least 10 empty shore tie chains on the other side of the bay, and 2 more empty ones a bit further down from where he had chosen to try out this "keystone cop" episode (he had one problem after another).
Eventually, he let out more rode and pulled in more stern line and ended up where he should have been near the shore with his bow facing out.
Luckily for me, he did not snag either my anchor nor the chain rode and he did not foul my buoy line either.
Anchorages can get crowded with people anchoring closer than is normally comfortable. As long as everyone communicates, tries to be nice, and the later boats realize that they are the ones who must accomodate if needed, all usually goes fairly well. I will say, besides that fellow above, I did witness some interesting ways to anchor this summer
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:09 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by tiltrider1 View Post
You should do the stern line to shore. In July and August there is not enough anchorage for some one to hog up the place. With the boarder closed we need to be extra sensitive to the lack of space and take extra effort to make room.
I always wondered why the stern lines. My thought was always that folks must be anchoring in really narrow spots.

Now I get it. WOW!

I cannot imagine having so many boats that an anchorage becomes so crowded that you need to stop your swing. That just sounds like no fun at all!

Do people complain if you run your generator, or BBQ with some smoke?

Here is a photo from one of our favorite anchorages. The second photo was trying to get two boats in the photo.
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Old 08-15-2020, 11:43 AM   #15
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Times have changed. 40 years ago I could find a nice quiet bay in the San Juan’s to drop hook and be all alone including no houses on shore. Not now, every bay has 20 houses looking at you and a dozen boats. The farther north you go the better it gets but guess what? The boarder is closed this year. This means record numbers of boats are stuck trying to find space in the San Juan’s. Wall to wall boats.

Now you can cry I was here first and put out 7 to 1 scope. Guess what? A dozen boats are going to anchor on top of you. Not saying it’s right, it’s just what is going to happen. Expecting some courtesy in times when there is a lack of space is only fooling your self.

One thing I see a lot of on this forum, a lot of people refuse to change despite the fact that we are in an ever changing world. How we did it in the 60’s ain’t going to cut it in the 20’s(2.0).
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Old 08-15-2020, 12:27 PM   #16
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I learned long ago to follow local practice.
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Old 08-15-2020, 03:46 PM   #17
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I could see a combination approach. If you are in a fairly wide open anchorage, or even a medium sized one that is not packed, then I agree with the time-honored approach of "later arrivals must accommodate the boats already anchored." It's amazing to me how many times I've been alone or one of only 2-3 boats in an anchorage, and later arrivals come and anchor right on top of me (literally). That's wrong and I will politely say so.

But if an anchorage is really small or really crowded (or you pretty much know it's going to be), then I don't think it's right to drop anchor right in the middle of the prime area, with luxuriously large scope, and just pull the "I was here first" card. Technically I guess one can; but why?

I don't know if every such anchorage is called out, but I remember at least one in the Gulf Islands (just as an example, it was Pirate's Cove), where a guidebook called out that it was a stern-tie anchorage (I think there might have been rings in the rock?). It was very early season, and we were the only ones there, so we did actually anchor "free"; but away from the rings and we would have moved if necessary (no other boats came in at all).

That's how I would play it, anyway.
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Old 08-15-2020, 04:59 PM   #18
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I don't anchor where there are yachts, but do anchor in very small places where swinging would be bad. I like using a stern anchor, rather than a line to shore. All my mooring is handled from the boat and I don't have to go ashore in the middle of anchoring.
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Old 08-15-2020, 05:12 PM   #19
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The boat who anchored close to you should have seen your lack of anchor line. What happens after that could have gone 6 different ways. It's a grey issue. I will say you could have handled it better, By announcing that you've been there all day is the same as saying I'm in the right, I claimed this spot, move your boat. Not very friendly or flexible. You pulled out a verbal shotgun. You could've said "Hi neighbor, I'm swinging on my hook and am concerned we're too close."
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Old 08-16-2020, 09:31 PM   #20
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The boat who anchored close to you should have seen your lack of anchor line. What happens after that could have gone 6 different ways. It's a grey issue. I will say you could have handled it better, By announcing that you've been there all day is the same as saying I'm in the right, I claimed this spot, move your boat. Not very friendly or flexible. You pulled out a verbal shotgun. You could've said "Hi neighbor, I'm swinging on my hook and am concerned we're too close."
I did.
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