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Dinghy sailing in Hamilton ON?


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Hi,

I am about to relocate from Louisiana to Hamilton ON for work, sight unseen thanks to covid, travel restriction and quarantine... Are there any dinghy anarchists from the area? Does anybody know anything about the local dinghy sailing scene? I have heard of the Royal Hamilton Yacht Club (seems stuffy / not my kind of place) and the Burlington Sailing and Yachting club.

I had to sell my Vector and am starting to think about what to get next.

 

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Have you looked at the VX One? There's a big and growing fleet in the greater Toronto area.

And don't worry - RHYC definitely isn't too stuffy. It's actually pretty down to earth, despite the "Royal" prefix.

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We went up to Toronto a few years ago and stopped by Port Dalhousie en route.  Big fleet of Kirby 25's there. Lots of dinghies out of clubs in Toronto as well, and Lasalle Park across the water from Hamilton in Aldershot looks like they have a good number of sailboats, and a lot of dinghies in the parking lot. Hamilton looks more industrialized.  The Royal Hamilton Y.C. looks pretty big, but not a lot of sailboats in the current Google Earth photos.  It may be too early in the season for them.  There are also dinghies in the drysail area, but not huge numbers. 

 

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18 minutes ago, cantp1 said:

Have you looked at the VX One? There's a big and growing fleet in the greater Toronto area.

And don't worry - RHYC definitely isn't too stuffy. It's actually pretty down to earth, despite the "Royal" prefix.

I'll definitely visit. One thing I never understood about the VX One (and most North American series) is the lack of trapeze... I would much rather hang out on the wire than suffer on the bench. Am I missing an important component of North American sailing?

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Dont even start thinking about it until you get there. 
There is a 300 mile long thirty mile wide chunk of water just south of your new home. 
just go look around and ask the locals. Eh?

 

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Hamilton Harbour itself is fairly nasty.  Nearly the entire Hamilton shore line is steel mills, ore docks and a brewery, but there is lots of good sailing close to Hamilton.  If you are okay with a 35 minute or so drive, I used to be a member at Port Dalhousie Yacht club, that would be my top pick for a sailing venue in the Hamilton area.  Not stuck up, with a good racing program, resonable price and really nice location with a good swimming beach and tons of good night life within walking distance.  Not sure what dinghies they run, but they have small keel boats.

There are a number of beach cats sailed off the beaches at both Hamilton Beach and Burlington beach.  Both beaches are oriented towards the lake, not the harbour, much cleaner water on the lake.

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1 hour ago, TBW said:

Hamilton Harbour itself is fairly nasty.  Nearly the entire Hamilton shore line is steel mills, ore docks and a brewery, but there is lots of good sailing close to Hamilton.  If you are okay with a 35 minute or so drive, I used to be a member at Port Dalhousie Yacht club, that would be my top pick for a sailing venue in the Hamilton area.  Not stuck up, with a good racing program, resonable price and really nice location with a good swimming beach and tons of good night life within walking distance.  Not sure what dinghies they run, but they have small keel boats.

There are a number of beach cats sailed off the beaches at both Hamilton Beach and Burlington beach.  Both beaches are oriented towards the lake, not the harbour, much cleaner water on the lake.

I did not know about Port Dalhousie YC. I'll definitely visit.

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I travelled that area a lot when my son was racing 29er. RHYC was the most active for dinghy racing from opti to 29er and has a lot of Stars. Port Credit, Bronte Harbour YC in Oakville were all fairly active. Never heard of anything at Port Dalhousie. National YC in Toronto(Hamilton side of TO) has a lot of I14's and is a great club and not to far of a drive.

Welcome to Canada.

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I live in Hamilton and have raced and sailed on the harbour since the 1970's . Most of the racing on the bay is in keel boats (beer can racing on week nights).  Racing and sailing up north is not the same as racing down south on Lake Pontchartrain, I think that is the reason most people prefer keel boats is the water temp. If you race cats check out the Burlington Beach Catamaran Club. If you want help send me a PM when you get here and I will introduce you to the clubs.

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1 hour ago, inneedofadvice said:

I travelled that area a lot when my son was racing 29er. RHYC was the most active for dinghy racing from opti to 29er and has a lot of Stars. Port Credit, Bronte Harbour YC in Oakville were all fairly active. Never heard of anything at Port Dalhousie. National YC in Toronto(Hamilton side of TO) has a lot of I14's and is a great club and not to far of a drive.

Welcome to Canada.

420's at DYC.  But ya, best known for their Kirby 25s.  I just sailed my own dinghy off my bigger boat when I was there, so didn't pay that much attention to what all was available.

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On 6/2/2021 at 3:55 PM, fred6767 said:

I live in Hamilton and have raced and sailed on the harbour since the 1970's . Most of the racing on the bay is in keel boats (beer can racing on week nights).  Racing and sailing up north is not the same as racing down south on Lake Pontchartrain, I think that is the reason most people prefer keel boats is the water temp. If you race cats check out the Burlington Beach Catamaran Club. If you want help send me a PM when you get here and I will introduce you to the clubs.

Water temperature... That's another issue I forgot about in 20 years in the South. I am up to a rude awakening... Thanks for the offer. I'll definitely PM you once I am settled in

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On 6/2/2021 at 3:48 PM, inneedofadvice said:

I travelled that area a lot when my son was racing 29er. RHYC was the most active for dinghy racing from opti to 29er and has a lot of Stars. Port Credit, Bronte Harbour YC in Oakville were all fairly active. Never heard of anything at Port Dalhousie. National YC in Toronto(Hamilton side of TO) has a lot of I14's and is a great club and not to far of a drive.

Welcome to Canada.

Thanks. I'd definitely be up for crewing on an I14. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey there bourdidn, I'm the Canadian I14 fleet president. Most of our fleet is actually located at the Royal Canadian Yacht Club in Toronto, but there are also a few boats in Ottawa. We typically get 10+ fourteens at a nationals, have full racing seasons, and travel to Worlds. That lifestyle has been largely derailed by the pandemic lockdowns, so we are in flux at the moment. We always need new sailors (especially ones that have some skiff experience) and we have more good undersailed boats than I'd like, so get vaccinated and send an email to canadian.dinghy.association@gmail.com and I will try to get you on a boat. It's looking like racing will start up again in July. 

I was looking at Hamilton harbour the other day on google maps - looks like it has a lot of potential as a sheltered water skiff sailing spot. 

https://www.i14.ca

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17 hours ago, mothra64 said:

Hey there bourdidn, I'm the Canadian I14 fleet president. Most of our fleet is actually located at the Royal Canadian Yacht Club in Toronto, but there are also a few boats in Ottawa. We typically get 10+ fourteens at a nationals, have full racing seasons, and travel to Worlds. That lifestyle has been largely derailed by the pandemic lockdowns, so we are in flux at the moment. We always need new sailors (especially ones that have some skiff experience) and we have more good undersailed boats than I'd like, so get vaccinated and send an email to canadian.dinghy.association@gmail.com and I will try to get you on a boat. It's looking like racing will start up again in July. 

I was looking at Hamilton harbour the other day on google maps - looks like it has a lot of potential as a sheltered water skiff sailing spot. 

https://www.i14.ca

I am leaving LA by car tomorrow. Once I am done with the two weeks of quarantine (despite being fully vaccinated), I will definitely need to get on the water! I'd love to help starting a second fleet in Hamilton. 

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