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Old 05-14-2021, 02:00 PM   #1
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Anchorages in Northern BC

We are hoping to transit BC to move our boat to Alaska and I'm working on a float plan.

Pending the appropriate approvals, we intend to move through as quickly as we safely can do (80 mile days), and are hoping to stop in secure anchorages and avoid populated areas to the extent possible. I'm familiar enough with the area inside Vancouver Island to plan our stops accordingly. Its the area north of VI that I can use some help with.

We expect to go by the most direct route, which is a fairly well-beaten path. In another year, I would include stops at docks or floats to avoid some sketchy anchorages with mining debris on the bottom, or steep sided small anchorages.

Its the area between Blunden Harbor and Foggy Bay that I'm working on now. Some suggestions for safe anchorages along this path would be helpful and appreciated. We are only stopping to sleep so area attractions are not a factor. Safe, secure, close to the route, and hopefully free of anchor-snagging debris are the qualifications.

thanks
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Old 05-14-2021, 03:23 PM   #2
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https://youtu.be/5q4wXwzb43U

N6838 delivery to KTN - shows the route & anchorages they stopped
at each night, starts around the 2:30 mark in video.
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Old 05-14-2021, 03:40 PM   #3
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How many stops would you like to make between those two points, considering your speed?
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Old 05-14-2021, 06:18 PM   #4
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You need this cruising guide. Covers exactly where you are going.
https://www.waggonerguidebooks.com/s...9/expncbc.html
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Old 05-14-2021, 06:33 PM   #5
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Some of my favorites for such a transit, starting just before Cape Caution:

Skull Cove

Fury Island Cove

Kisameet Bay

Rescue Bay (be careful going through Jackson Narrows the next morning)

Bottleneck Inlet

Khutze Inlet

Lowe Inlet

Klewnuggit Inlet, Exposed Inlet

Pillsbury Cove (be careful skirting the aquaculture on the way in)

Brundige Inlet

Foggy Bay inner cove
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Old 05-14-2021, 06:40 PM   #6
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Area is far too complex for an easy answer:

https://www.harbourchandler.ca/shop/...hoCiM4QAvD_BwE
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Old 05-14-2021, 07:11 PM   #7
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You guys are right; my question is too broad to answer. I will narrow it down a bit and ask specific questions if I get stumped. I've made the run before but never with the guidelines we need to follow this time. I tried a few versions but it gets tougher when every stop has to be an anchorage and you are pushing for (reasonably) max miles each day.



RCook, thanks for the list. I will look those up.
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Old 05-14-2021, 07:13 PM   #8
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I do have the guidebooks but there are a huge number of options to check out and every change affects the stop before and/or after.
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Old 05-14-2021, 07:53 PM   #9
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Don't over think it.
If, for whatever reason, you have a 50 mile day, every other day is thrown off and your well intended float plan is scuppered. That plan is for CBSA, RCMP, etc. and is somewhat of an assurance to them, you have chosen the "most direct reasonable route."

Use RCook's stops as a guide and go from there. Almost anywhere, you will be within decent reach of alternatives, which you can scope out on Waggoners before you get there.

Bottom debris shouldn't be a huge worry and again check Waggoners on approach.
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Old 05-15-2021, 01:29 AM   #10
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Why don't you go to marine traffic and follow US flagged boats now heading to Alaska and see where they are overnighting to get ideas where to stop.
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Old 05-15-2021, 07:18 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guy with a boat View Post
I do have the guidebooks but there are a huge number of options to check out and every change affects the stop before and/or after.
Your boat is probably big enough to shrug off whatever summer winds you'll see, so you most likely won't have to wait for weather windows in anchorages close to the next big crossing or big body of water like we have to do.

Thinking this way, you probably have the luxury of being able to have a more definitive plan for anchorages. We're always keeping bailout options in mind, because even afternoon winds can make things very uncomfortable very fast in our size of boat.

Maybe you could check out how Washington State commercial fishing boats get to Alaska and what anchorages they prefer. Pretty sure they grind their way through the Inside Passage as efficiently as possible.
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Old 05-15-2021, 08:46 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soo-Valley View Post
Why don't you go to marine traffic and follow US flagged boats now heading to Alaska and see where they are overnighting to get ideas where to stop.
Marine Traffic has near zero coverage from Milbanke Sound to Prince Rupert.

Here are some alternates (bailouts) to go along with RCook’s plan.

Shearwater

Wigham Cove

Coghlan Anchorage
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Old 05-15-2021, 11:42 AM   #13
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Great suggestions from everyone, including to not overthink it. I don’t expect a perfect plan but I’m wired to be prepared with planned stops and alternates identified before we head out through unfamiliar territory.

I’ve looked up all the suggested anchorages and added them to my list of stops or alternates. I was having trouble with a couple stretches but now I think I’ve got good possibilities all the way up. Its just a matter of assembling the float plan and that will be much easier now with the additional info I now have.

Our submitted plan will be as optimal as possible and I will have alternates along the way if/when the schedule gets changed by weather or other factors. I mostly wanted to make sure we have good options so we aren’t forced to run at night or stop in a sketchy spot where sleep won’t happen.

Thanks to everyone for the insight and specific suggestions. The cumulative knowledge and experience here on TF is impressive.
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Old 05-15-2021, 11:49 AM   #14
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I'm glad the angst is lessened. Remember, there are hundreds of 7 knot boats, some as small as 28 feet, making this trip in 5-8-10 hour days. Many would give up their favorite whatever, to be in your boots.

You will be just fine.
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Old 05-15-2021, 12:39 PM   #15
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One we have used going north before committing to crossing Chatham Sound to Prince Rupert is a bit north of Oona River, between the top end of Lewis Island and the east side of Porcher Island, through Bloxam Passage.

Barnard Harbor, south end of Whale Channel also came in handy. We stopped very abruptly while backing down on our anchor there. Thought we were going to lose our anchor to some massive ancient waterlogged spruce log/root ball, but it came up easy.

Both these spots are good for bigger boats and the anchorages have flattish bottoms.
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Old 05-15-2021, 04:15 PM   #16
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We completed this passage last week. Our stops north of Pt McNeill were:



1. Codville Lagoon
2. Bottleneck Inlet
3. Lowe Inlet
4. Brundige Inlet


All of these worked well for us with good protection and holding.



We initially planned for shorter legs and a longer passage but once underway you realize that since you aren't able to leave your boat there isn't much reason to get to an anchorage early, so we averaged 9-10 hours days at 8 - 8.5 knots.



Fortunately we didn't encounter any weather delays. Good luck with your trip.
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Old 05-16-2021, 12:22 PM   #17
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63 is too big for a couple of my fav's, Miles Inlet and Walker Group (Kent/Staples Islands). I find Miles really convenient riding an afternoon tide out the strait and slipping past Slingsby with the morning flood. Blunden is a good choice for a big boat. If not N/NW wind Jones Cove (SW Smith Snd) is good, anchor just inside the rocks off the point, beautiful view in the sunset light. Millbrook Cove (NW Smith) is a regular stop, use caution approaching in a big boat, avoid the north part inside, it shallows up sooner than you'd expect. Further up the line Green Island Anchorage is a good one. At the top of Fitz Hugh Long Point Cove is a convenient stop (not in outflow winds tho). Just past Bella Bella Ormidale Hbr is good anchorage for large boats. These are secure spots close by the route, mostly easy in and out. Wigham Cove is a couple miles out of the way but an excellent anchorage, especially the south cove. If you're not wary about transiting Reid Passage (Ivory Is) in a big boat, Oliver Cove is a good stop. Rescue Bay is a good stop but about 3 miles out of the way of the most direct route.
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Old 05-16-2021, 01:25 PM   #18
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How was it at Bugdige Inlet?
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Old 05-16-2021, 04:48 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murofrelwart View Post
We completed this passage last week. Our stops north of Pt McNeill were:



1. Codville Lagoon
Curious about Codville Lagoon. Last time up there, we dragged our anchor all over the west cove before getting a dubious set. There were a couple of boats close to the north shore of that cove who seemed to have no problem but filled that space. 2 other boats came in after us and similarly made many attempts before setting, one of them dragged in the night and had to move.

Where in Codville is the good bottom? North cove?
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Old 05-16-2021, 05:50 PM   #20
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I've anchored in the east area of Codville. It was windblown, that day at least, and I wasn't impressed. There might be better cover at the north end although it's deeper. A far better spot nearby is Fancy Cove, on the south side of Lama Passage. Can't help with Codville's bottom and holding.
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