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PNW Marina suggestions for the next six months


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All,

Looking for advice on where to start my search for an available slip for a Taswell 49.  We are under contract for the boat over at Swiftsure, and if everything checks out will be looking for a semi-permanent slip for the winter.  We will be sailing the boat down to SoCal in the spring once we have the boat sorted for anything major.  We live near Morro Bay, CA, and will bring the boat down here once we find space (down here is also an issue, but I have a few leads).

We are not looking for liveaboard, the boat is in good condition, and will be sailed on the occasions that we can get up there.  I do not foresee needing to do any major work, but I may need to upgrade some of the gear, so a place that allows some basic work would be good.  We do not need to be near Seattle, but near an airport is a plus, I suppose.  We have also considered moving the boat down to the Astoria area if we can find space there.  Really all we need is a safe place to keep her, and parking nearby.

There seems to be a dizzying array of marinas with really long waiting lists (that never respond to emails), so I was hoping someone local might have a suggestion for a place that may be able to squeeze us in, or if someone knows the secret handshake, or codeword, that would be good too.

Any help is appreciated.

Dave

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Have you tried Elliott Bay Marina?  Might be your best bet in Seattle for an open slip of that size, and easy to get to from SeaTac airport.  Could also check Cap Sante in Anacortes.  There's a bus that runs from SeaTac to Cap Sante that's pretty easy to use.  Both are well run and should at least give you a response. 

You could also see if Swiftsure or Signature Yachts (next door to Swiftsure) has a slip they could lease you through the winter if they don't have an influx of brokerage boats.

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5 minutes ago, Kolibri said:

Dave, 

Check out Westpoint Harbor Marina in Redwood City,  CA. Nice marina, reasonable slip rates, and close to SFO. https://westpointharbor.com/

Thanks.  But once we make the jump south we will probably just go straight to Morro Bay (or Avila), we just wanted to delay the jump until after the winter, so really looking for a place in the PNW.

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Sidney BC - lots of Americans keep boats there. Slight headache with Covid etc these days.

Point Roberts, WA (pretty close to Vancouver airport but 2 taxis away (Canada + US) and a border crossing. Small plane flights to Bellingham WA if you want to avoid a Canada border crossing?

 

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10 minutes ago, Calling Elvis said:

Have you tried Elliott Bay Marina?  Might be your best bet in Seattle for an open slip of that size, and easy to get to from SeaTac airport.  Could also check Cap Sante in Anacortes.  There's a bus that runs from SeaTac to Cap Sante that's pretty easy to use.  Both are well run and should at least give you a response. 

You could also see if Swiftsure or Signature Yachts (next door to Swiftsure) has a slip they could lease you through the winter if they don't have an influx of brokerage boats.

I will give those two a try.  I had discounted the Elliott bay option given its proximity to the city, and I like the Cap Sante idea if they have space.

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29 minutes ago, Zonker said:

Sidney BC - lots of Americans keep boats there. Slight headache with Covid etc these days.

Point Roberts, WA (pretty close to Vancouver airport but 2 taxis away (Canada + US) and a border crossing. Small plane flights to Bellingham WA if you want to avoid a Canada border crossing?

 

Thanks Zonker

The marina in Sidney looks awesome, though the website says full with waitlist, but I will send a note anyway.  As for the Point Roberts thing, that looks a bit tougher to get to (and who drew the line there?)

Dave

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6 minutes ago, Zonker said:

You guys can give Point Bob back any time. 

I was not assigned to the negotiating team, but I would think a combo of Canucks tickets, poutine, and Molson would do the trick...

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For those that care, quick update.

Elliott Bay took my info and will let me know, but they think they could shuffle me around and make it work until April (not the cheapest place)

Sidney - Super nice on the phone, but full for both annual and temp

Bremerton - Two year waiting list for that length

Cap Sante - Two years as well...

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38 minutes ago, Zonker said:

Dave - glad a spot looks possible.

Wish we could trade something back for Pt Roberts.

But how'd we get screwed over this little bit too?  Another US enclave isolated from the rest of the US.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northwest_Angle

 

I love Lake of the Woods. Going back next summer for a month. Didn't know about the Angle.  

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If you're really just looking for a berth for the winter, both Roche Harbor & Port of Friday Harbor on San Juan Island will have space available.  Think you need to be out by either May 1 or May 31, and it's a bit of a haul from Seattle, especially with how buggered the ferry system is at the moment, but they're both inexpensive and in a gorgeous location.

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2 hours ago, Zonker said:

You guys can give Point Bob back any time. 

 

2 hours ago, Zonker said:

how'd we get screwed over this little bit too?

Get a bunch of those around the world and your wife could have a series lined up. 

She hires a photographer, doesn't she? 

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Of the ones mentioned, considering travel to and from. Anywhere in Canada is going to be a hassle due to the ongoing Covid thing, and even before that it adds either a lot of cost or additional travel time (I have kept a boat in Sidney for the last 7 years and have travelled there every conceivable way). If you decide to do that, consider the inner harbor marinas in Victoria - beautiful location and some of them offer very attractive winter rates (including the hotel marinas) as they are empty. 

On our tour through the west Puget Sound area this summer there seemed to be space in places like Poulsbo, but it is a bit of a drive from the airport and not that great daysailing out of, no yacht infrastructure. You can definitely find space out in the islands, but again it is not quick and easy to get to Roche, or even Friday harbor. My first choices would be Bellingham (Southwest now flies there) or Cap Sante in Anacortes. They have a long waiting list for a permanent slip but often rent many of the transient slips for winter. Anacortes has good sailing immediately out of the harbor and good yacht infrastructure in town. There are a couple of other marinas there that might have a winter sublet. Anacortes is also a long drive from SeaTac, but there is an efficient bus from there (or Bellingham) that will drop you at the marina, you can walk to the Enterprise car rental place from there (2 blocks). There are big marinas near Seattle but if you are traveling you will spend as much time sitting in traffic as on the boat. Everett has a huge marina, never been in there so I don't know what it is like. 

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Definitely come to Astoria. Amazing little town. Mostly cause I wanna look at your boat!

Seriously though, Astoria does have transient slips and I have seen visiting boats stay up to 60mo. They were doing dredging the last few weeks, so Im not sure what the current availability is, but give Janice a call. 503-325-8279

I wouldnt doddle though. The bar gets pretty nasty in the winter. Check your weather and bar conditions.

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Tacoma would work, https://seattle.craigslist.org/tac/boa/d/tacoma-moorage-slip-available-on/7405424542.html

Shilshole in Seattle would work also and they allow up to one year of sub-leasing so there might be options even if the marina office says they are full. I am not aware of a formal system for sub-leases so ask around, check CR, and use the brokers to help out. I will be there today and will check the message board.

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All,

Thanks for the additional suggestions.  Swiftsure has agreed to work with us, but they aren't really set up for us to "visit", but they are the back up.

Bellingham has guest availability til Mar 31 for now, which isn't perfect but might work in the short term, then maybe to Astoria.

I tried emailing the Foss Marina, as well as Fisherman's Terminal with no response.  And Johnny's Dock shows closed permanently on Google, but I will try the CL ad.

Steele, if you see anything at Shilshole I would appreciate it.

All, I should probably start another thread, but if anyone knows the in/outs of the sales tax situation, or where I can read up on that, I would appreciate the lead.  I will end up with the boat in CA, and have no doubts I will have to pay tax on it there, but I would like to avoid getting a tax bill in WA and CA and being caught in the middle.

Dave

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Typically, most states will let you buy a boat in one state and register in another, but you will often have a rather small window to move it to that state if you do so. If you are keeping the boat in WA for the winter, youll likely have to register it there and pay WA sales tax (8.3% - not sure what CA sales tax is). After that registration is up you can re-register in CA, but shouldnt be doubled down on the sales tax, just the hassle of re-registering the vessel.

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You might try van isle Marina in Sidney, but on the hard instead of in the water.  I paid about 3500$ CAD Oct-March a year ago for a similarly sized boat in the yard on their winter deal(haul out, wash, blocking, lay days, unblocking, launch).   

Point Roberts is a great place, I think they may have seaplane service from WA but don't quote me on that, that's going on a vague memory of a conversation with someone in West Marine back when they were in Canada still.  Mostly full of Canadian boats because of the huge cost savings VS Vancouver moorage.  

 

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3 hours ago, DaveShap said:

All,

Thanks for the additional suggestions.  Swiftsure has agreed to work with us, but they aren't really set up for us to "visit", but they are the back up.

Bellingham has guest availability til Mar 31 for now, which isn't perfect but might work in the short term, then maybe to Astoria.

I tried emailing the Foss Marina, as well as Fisherman's Terminal with no response.  And Johnny's Dock shows closed permanently on Google, but I will try the CL ad.

Steele, if you see anything at Shilshole I would appreciate it.

All, I should probably start another thread, but if anyone knows the in/outs of the sales tax situation, or where I can read up on that, I would appreciate the lead.  I will end up with the boat in CA, and have no doubts I will have to pay tax on it there, but I would like to avoid getting a tax bill in WA and CA and being caught in the middle.

Dave

What I've found in regard to Sales/Use Tax (two variations depending on whether you buy new or just want to register your boat sometime after a purchase) is that they WILL get their $$.   If you've paid somewhere else (another state) you will get credit for that but pay any difference if the new state is higher than the previous one.  Sales/Use taxes also vary based on county and or city of residence or moorage or purchase.  To slow the bleed, find a lower tax rate place first, pay that, then pay the rest when you find a final 'home'.  

Washington essentially can give you a cruising permit for 60 days, renewable once before you have to pay the appropriate taxes.  At least this was so when I brought a boat into Washington some time ago.

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9 hours ago, DaveShap said:

 

All, I should probably start another thread, but if anyone knows the in/outs of the sales tax situation, or where I can read up on that, I would appreciate the lead.  I will end up with the boat in CA, and have no doubts I will have to pay tax on it there, but I would like to avoid getting a tax bill in WA and CA and being caught in the middle.

Dave

I am somewhat familiar with the tax situation in both WA and CA. In WA, as a non-resident after 60 days "in the waters of the State of Washington" you owe tax of 7 - 10% of value depending on county. However if you bought the boat from a broker, you can get a 1 year cruising permit for $500 that will exempt you, done. That is the easiest. After the 60 days you can apply for a 60 day cruising permit, but it must be done on time and in person (and last time I was up there the DMV offices were still closed, Catch 22). That can be extended for a further 60 days on the same terms. Then you must leave the state for 180 days. If you pull the boat out of the water there is a good argument that it is not "in the waters of the State of Washington". Note that the first 60 days need not be contiguous, you allowed 60 days in any 12 months before being taxed. The enforcement of this in WA appears to be lax, so you might very well get away with doing nothing. Once you file for the 60 day extension though, you've basically put them on notice to check. There is one more loophole, if the boat is being worked on there is a holiday for that period. This isn't as good as it sounds, you have to apply for the exemption specifying how much work and where, and the application has to be signed by yard management and notarized and renewed with the same process every 60 days. And it can be denied, then you are screwed. 

Now on to California. Here is the good news. If you purchased and take delivery of the boat out of state, AND use it out of state for 180 of the first 360 days, you can apply for an exemption from CA state tax. You will have to provide documentation (marina bills, fuel bills, repair, etc) and they WILL check. If you do that, you are assumed to have bought the boat for use out of state, but here is the good part: the exemption is permanent, if you later bring the boat to California you do not owe tax. So in your situation you definitely want to keep it out of CA for the first 180 days. You will likely get a tax bill from your home port county, triggered by CG registration. It may take them 2 years to catch up to you. Both times I have done it, I waited for that tax bill, then responded with the request for exemption and documentation of out of state use. Both times it took about 6 months but the exemption was granted. It might be best to apply when the boat is still out of state. 

There is also another way, pay the tax in CA, then show this tax receipt to WA. WA, like many states, gives you credit for any tax paid in another jurisdiction. So at least you will only get taxed once. 

If you take the boat to Canada, it is considered a conveyance (like a car) and therefore personal property. It can be temporarily imported for 12 months, then must be exported. In BC, leaving for only a day resets the clock. Very nice, those Canadians. In theory, if you leave a conveyance in Canada and return to the US, you are supposed to file a form (E99 I think?) to that effect. But no marina, boatyard, or Canadian customs office seems to know how to do it and as far as I can tell no one does. If you do get caught and taxed, it is very high, something like 16%. 

The two best places to keep the boat out of the water are Van Isle Marina in Sidney, or several yards in Anacortes. Van Isle is very, very good, but you must cross the border to get there (and they may be full this late in the season). Anacortes yards are a little cheaper to store, but more expensive to haul/launch if you do that often. In Van Isle, you get one round trip for every month of contracted storage, included. 

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Go buy this wonderful boat if you want her. Keep the registration for the state of Washington or where ever works for you. Go get a slip in Sausalito, Richmond or Alameda. Sail the crap out it during winter in the Bay. Head south in 160 days when the weather window is perfect for a great coastal cruise ride. Show up in LA, Dana Point or San Diego where ever you want to land stating you sailed from Washington. 

life is short. I know lots of people play games. Delayed gratification is overrated. You could get hit by a bus or catch CovId omega in which case your wife gets the boat, sells it and moves to a Coronado condo with her enlisted boy toy. In other words, enjoy the boat and life.  You hit the jackpot. If you are so worried about paying taxes on it, maybe you should buy a smaller, less expensive boat. Taxes of all things are some of the cheapest of expenses of this fine vessel.
 

 

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Try Roche Harbor, they usually have space in the winter and have lower rates, also Deer Harbor Marina, same drill on lower winter rates.  You need to be out by May I think.  Some of the marinas do 50% cap transient for summer months and winter leases.  Elliot bay is not a a good winter marina.  My office is right next to it.  I have seen some almost surfable shit rolling in the last couple weeks.

Would also do as above and look in BC.  Sydney is a short hop from San Juans.  If you don't plan on registration in Wa it can be nice to do the San Juan BC shuffle to avoid taxes etc till you get it to your permanent home.

 

Other SJ options, west sound marina, Friday Harbor, Shipyard Cove, Rosario, the one by Lopez Ferry can't remember name, Kim Smith runs it.

Some are exposed to southerly so do your homework. All can work if you get the right slip and have someone to check the boat.

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Problem with Anacortes or San Juans -> Sidney right now is the ferry isn't running. It doesn't run Jan-Mar anyway, but hasn't run at all since early 2020 due to Covid. Roche is a lovely place, even has some marine infrastructure now (Philbrooks USA) but to travel there from CA requires a plane ride, a bus ride, a ferry ride, and a taxi ride. Or a 2-3 day drive and ferry ride. Sidney actually easier if you are willing to take an international flight to Vic. But will require a Covid test each direction. Pre-Covid, Sidney was great, Anacortes better but for the tax situation. Reason is easier to get to from the south, and more yachting infrastructure, also marina is essentially downtown. 1 block to Safeway, 2 blocks to Westmarine, 2 blocks to rental car agency, 1-4 blocks for numerous restaurants. 

I've kept a boat as a commuter cruiser for 7 years now in Sidney, Anacortes, and Orcas. Traveled to all of them every conceivable way there is except kayak.

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3 hours ago, SASSAFRASS said:

Try Roche Harbor, they usually have space in the winter and have lower rates, also Deer Harbor Marina, same drill on lower winter rates.  You need to be out by May I think.  Some of the marinas do 50% cap transient for summer months and winter leases.  Elliot bay is not a a good winter marina.  My office is right next to it.  I have seen some almost surfable shit rolling in the last couple weeks.

Would also do as above and look in BC.  Sydney is a short hop from San Juans.  If you don't plan on registration in Wa it can be nice to do the San Juan BC shuffle to avoid taxes etc till you get it to your permanent home.

 

Other SJ options, west sound marina, Friday Harbor, Shipyard Cove, Rosario, the one by Lopez Ferry can't remember name, Kim Smith runs it.

Some are exposed to southerly so do your homework. All can work if you get the right slip and have someone to check the boat.

You saying you saw surfable shit inside the Elliott Bay Marina break walls?  We're near the end of a finger there, so fairly exposed compared to a lot of slips.  We've never seen anything closely surfable inside of marina, and been there in some big blows.   

I got no vested interest in EBM, just don't want someone to stress keeping a boat there by something that isn't an issue.

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The issue with Elliott Bay Marina is that the slips are oriented crosswise to the prevailing winds. Add narrow fairways to the equation and it can be a shitshow on windy days, especially the southerlies predominant in the winter. 

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2 minutes ago, IStream said:

The issue with Elliott Bay Marina is that the slips are oriented crosswise to the prevailing winds. Add narrow fairways to the equation and it can be a shitshow on windy days, especially the southerlies predominant in the winter. 

This is def true, had a few of our own shit show experiences with a big southerly wind, but waves in the marina are not the issue.  And if the OP is just looking for a safe place to stash a boat for the winter, I wouldn't dismiss EBM due to this.  Cost on the other hand...

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Both the fairways, and the berths are narrow in Elliot. We were assigned a berth that there was no possibility of fitting into. Had to back out because the fairway was less than the length of the boat. If you go there make sure they know the beam of your boat and understand that two things cannot occupy the same space at the same time. Even then, fenders on both sides. 

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Pick a weather window and bring it to the Columbia. Ilwaco has tons of space but is still in Washington. Oregon has no sales tax. Lots of moorage available (probably way cheaper than Puget Sound) within taxi distance of PDX and boats love fresh water.   Disclaimer, my friends own this business, and they’re first rate. 
https://mccuddysmarina.com/

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38 minutes ago, Kenny Dumas said:

Pick a weather window and bring it to the Columbia. Ilwaco has tons of space but is still in Washington. Oregon has no sales tax. Lots of moorage available (probably way cheaper than Puget Sound) within taxi distance of PDX and boats love fresh water.   Disclaimer, my friends own this business, and they’re first rate. 
https://mccuddysmarina.com/

The OP said he hoped to do a few trips north from Cali to exercise the boat by going sailing. Being a Right Coaster from the land of solid winter water, I don't know much about the Columbia, except the horror stories about the bar in winter. Is there actually much winter sailing there, even if based in Astoria?

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6 minutes ago, Jim in Halifax said:

The OP said he hoped to do a few trips north from Cali to exercise the boat by going sailing. Being a Right Coaster from the land of solid winter water, I don't know much about the Columbia, except the horror stories about the bar in winter. Is there actually much winter sailing there, even if based in Astoria?

Yes but it tends to be light wind sailing (except during storms).  Ice on the decks can be a problem - clear one minute, zero-friction the next.  Still, there are usually some really nice days in February.  And then the following week you might be iced-in.  

IMG_1694.jpeg.34597a2512c5eaad89919b1c1b0b642f.jpeg 

(Not Astoria.) I don't think I'd call Astoria "within taxi distance."  In fact it's pretty hard to get there because there isn't much bus service.  I guess there are probably airport shuttle vans that will go out there from PDX.  I had a really hard time getting back and forth when my boat was down in that area.  Ended up staging a vehicle at the marina and then towing it home later.  

I think the point was that once you get across the bar, there are any number of places between Astoria and PDX to find an inexpensive slip for a season.  

Still, weather windows don't appear on-demand. If moorage could be had, I'd stay in the Salish Sea.  

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22 hours ago, DDW said:

I am somewhat familiar with the tax situation in both WA and CA. In WA, as a non-resident after 60 days "in the waters of the State of Washington" you owe tax of 7 - 10% of value depending on county. However if you bought the boat from a broker, you can get a 1 year cruising permit for $500 that will exempt you, done. That is the easiest. After the 60 days you can apply for a 60 day cruising permit, but it must be done on time and in person (and last time I was up there the DMV offices were still closed, Catch 22). That can be extended for a further 60 days on the same terms. Then you must leave the state for 180 days. If you pull the boat out of the water there is a good argument that it is not "in the waters of the State of Washington". Note that the first 60 days need not be contiguous, you allowed 60 days in any 12 months before being taxed. The enforcement of this in WA appears to be lax, so you might very well get away with doing nothing. Once you file for the 60 day extension though, you've basically put them on notice to check. There is one more loophole, if the boat is being worked on there is a holiday for that period. This isn't as good as it sounds, you have to apply for the exemption specifying how much work and where, and the application has to be signed by yard management and notarized and renewed with the same process every 60 days. And it can be denied, then you are screwed. 

<snip>

The two best places to keep the boat out of the water are Van Isle Marina in Sidney, or several yards in Anacortes. Van Isle is very, very good, but you must cross the border to get there (and they may be full this late in the season). Anacortes yards are a little cheaper to store, but more expensive to haul/launch if you do that often. In Van Isle, you get one round trip for every month of contracted storage, included. 

DDW, thanks for the response.  It explains exactly what I was wondering/expecting.  While I am not trying to dodge the taxes, I would love to use the $25k for something like new electronics.  We did plan on sailing it in the PNW before we sail south, the big question is do we try to move it south next April, or go the full 365 to save the taxes.  It is going through Swiftsure, so I will ask for the permit as part of the deal.  Thanks again.

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30 minutes ago, DaveShap said:

DDW, thanks for the response.  It explains exactly what I was wondering/expecting.  While I am not trying to dodge the taxes, I would love to use the $25k for something like new electronics.  We did plan on sailing it in the PNW before we sail south, the big question is do we try to move it south next April, or go the full 365 to save the taxes.  It is going through Swiftsure, so I will ask for the permit as part of the deal.  Thanks again.

You don't need to go the full 365, only 181 days. That qualifies as "180 out of the first 360 days". 

But, the PNW area offers about 100x the cruising of the Morro Bay area - or even the whole of California - so you'd be wasting an opportunity if you don't spend at least some time up there. 

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And, if none of the above options work, there is always room at... https://pedderbay.com/marina/

Forty klicks past Fucksville and then turn left. Really hard to get to, but it is west of Race Rocks. Already halfway to California.

Your neighbours will be a Canadian Armed Forces ammo dump and a medium security prison sitting on the most desirable section of  oceanfront property in Canada. The local joke is that people break into the prison to live there.

Seriously, there are always empty spaces there, along with some boats that haven't moved since the Beatles were a thing. Good cinnamon buns and coffee in the cafe, too.

Part of the Oak Bay Marine Group now, I believe. 

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8 hours ago, Jim in Halifax said:

The OP said he hoped to do a few trips north from Cali to exercise the boat by going sailing. Being a Right Coaster from the land of solid winter water, I don't know much about the Columbia, except the horror stories about the bar in winter. Is there actually much winter sailing there, even if based in Astoria?

The horror stories are true.  She’s  impressive and puts up world class kill numbers of good boats and sailors. But the modern wind, wave, and tidal models make it manageable if your schedule is totally flexible. Tod’s right about occasional good weather in winter, like once a month on average. Which might be 8 days in March, but I’d lay good odds on finding a 3 day window or two between now and March. Smart boats have been on weather hold since September, looking to get south. The weather on the coast sucks in the winter. Bring it upriver 100 miles and enjoy Portland 

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19 hours ago, mcmurdo said:

And, if none of the above options work, there is always room at... https://pedderbay.com/marina/

Forty klicks past Fucksville and then turn left. Really hard to get to, but it is west of Race Rocks. Already halfway to California.

Your neighbours will be a Canadian Armed Forces ammo dump and a medium security prison sitting on the most desirable section of  oceanfront property in Canada. The local joke is that people break into the prison to live there.

Seriously, there are always empty spaces there, along with some boats that haven't moved since the Beatles were a thing. Good cinnamon buns and coffee in the cafe, too.

Part of the Oak Bay Marine Group now, I believe. 

OK, finally got a free moment to look this up, and while it is really tempting...   How the hell do I get there from anywhere?  I do like a good cinna bun tho...

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21 hours ago, DDW said:

You don't need to go the full 365, only 181 days. That qualifies as "180 out of the first 360 days". 

But, the PNW area offers about 100x the cruising of the Morro Bay area - or even the whole of California - so you'd be wasting an opportunity if you don't spend at least some time up there. 

Thanks for the confirmation, that lines up with our schedule pretty well.  Let's see how the survey falls, and then this will get real, real fast.

OK, one last question...   I know there are flights going in/out of Canada, are the guest docks in Vic or Sidney open year round?  Right now many are reported to be full for monthly/annual, but if we want to get the boat around what the likelihood we will find space for a night or two?

Dave

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Space for a night or two is rarely a problem, and the marinas this far south are open year around. Victoria and Port of Sidney are perhaps the two busiest, you might be turned away on a holiday weekend in season for example. You can reserve at both I believe, and just a couple of days ahead would usually be enough. If Port of Sidney is full, there are several marinas just 1 mile north of town, Van Isle and several others. Port of Sidney is much more convenient to the town of Sidney than the others though. 

The Port Authority in Victoria runs several marinas, if you want the full experience you ask for the Causeway Floats, right in front of the Princess Hotel and government house. Sometimes these are full, but the others are nearby.  

Since a lot of boats get hauled for the winter in that area, nightly moorage is seldom a problem between say October and May. And rates are often cut. I've talked to a number of people who spent all winter in Victoria inner harbor and very good rates. The whole area is much more set up for transient cruisers (and commuter cruisers) that anything I am familiar with in California. 

Knowing what I know now, I'd consider planning a summer in the area, sail south in early September. It may be hard to find a berth, and I don't know your time situation. After a season there you may want to extend for another.......    The weather going south is still decent late August,  I brought my sailboat down the last week of September and it was fine. 

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On 11/12/2021 at 2:15 PM, DaveShap said:

Thanks for the confirmation, that lines up with our schedule pretty well.  Let's see how the survey falls, and then this will get real, real fast.

OK, one last question...   I know there are flights going in/out of Canada, are the guest docks in Vic or Sidney open year round?  Right now many are reported to be full for monthly/annual, but if we want to get the boat around what the likelihood we will find space for a night or two?

Dave

Yes, there's always nightly/weekly space as far as I've seen.  

The other place you might consider if you'll be staying with the boat is the new marina in Ganges harbour, it's a short ferry, or even shorter seaplane hop from Sidney, or even from near Vancouver airport(YVR).  They spent an obscene amount of money on the new setup, nice floating breakwaters etc... Even has a half-decent pub.   Just in time for Covid to wipe out their expected influx of US tourists.  Much better pricing than Van-isle, excellent electrical(I got <.2V from shore ground to sea, compared to .125 at Van-Isle, or 1.4V at one of the little Marinas, great amenities and right in the gulf islands for cruising.  In fact I just stuck a client from Alberta there who ignored every suggestion to get on looking for a slip as I neared the end of fixing his boat, he has those horrid pod drives and one got ripped out along with a good bit of the bottom/transom on a rock at speed, then sank.  

Another place worth checking if you'll be away from the boat is North Saanich marina.  Harder to get in and out with the boat, but cheaper than Van-Isle.

 

 

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