Thursday, December 2, 2010

02. GETTING HOME

The Problem: How do you get a 38ft sailboat from Newport Beach in southern California to Vancouver Island, BC?
After a fair bit of research we discovered four options...
  1. Dockwise Yacht Transport. - A great option if your timetable just happens to coincide with their sailing schedule. Ours did not.
  2. Sail up the coast. - This would work great since the winds in October & November blow from the South-East, but unfortunately those same winds tend to blow from 25-60kts during the winter months. Summer is the time to sail up the west coast but even then the wind is from the north-west forcing the sailor to usually sail west for a week before turning and sailing North-East for another week!
  3. Motor up the coast. - Aside from using a lot of fuel and putting some hours on your engine this would be a great option... in April, not October!!
  4. Shipping by truck. - This is a very popular option on the west coast and once dismantled and loaded your boat will arrive in just 2 to 3 days!
The only real option for us was #4 but with huge cost increases to transport across the border we opted to have the boat trucked to Seattle then, after being re-assembled and launched, we would sail the boat across the border into Canada!
Here are some photos of the process…
3 days later… 

After a week in the boatyard getting the mast step replaced, the mast plate on deck repaired and having the boat put back together and launched we were ready to go.















Travel on the water in the Pacific Northwest in November is not easy. The weather is usually bad with windstorms and endless rain. Our plan was to head to Port Townsend then try to cross the Juan de Fuca Strait (30 miles of open water) the next day if the weather permitted…
 

As you can see by the photos, the weather on this day was fantastic! Clear blue skies, sunshine and no wind. We made great time thanks to the favorable tides and when we got to Port Townsend at 2:00 pm we decided that we might as well just keep going even though it meant arriving two hours after dark! It's not really a good idea to arrive at a new port or anchorage after dark, but we felt pretty comfortable with our knowledge of Victoria Harbour.

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