Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

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Phil M
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Phil M » Wed May 01, 2019 9:02 pm

I haven't been on this board for almost 2 years - since I sold my MacGregor and my son and I upgraded to a larger sailboat. we are finally just going to go to the west side of Vancouver Island in June. And you are going to circumnavigate? Good for you. I will have to try and follow. :) Phil

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Wed May 01, 2019 9:56 pm

What does your cruising plan look like? What portion of the west coast of the island do you plan to visit? We've been up as far as Hot Springs Cove, cruising out of Port Angeles, on the outside. It was rough going north, especially between Ucluelet and Tofino, but the trip back south was very smooth. We'll be doing our circumnavigation counterclockwise, as is customary.

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Phil M
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Phil M » Thu May 02, 2019 10:35 am

We will be starting out from Saanich Inlet up through Juan de fu@ to Barclay Sound. We have never been that way before. We have a time limit of around 2 weeks or so and a limit that involves two small children. In selling my MacGregor I had to compromise.

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Thu May 02, 2019 11:36 am

Hi Phil,

Your plans sound great. You should love Barkley Sound and the Broken Islands. On your way up, you may decided to spend a night at Port Renfrew, which is about the only place to pause between Sooke and Ucluelet. Not a lot of protected anchorages there, but we did find a nice Mac nook behind Woods Nose, which gave nice protection. If it's empty, you should probably be able to fit in there. If so, be sure to go ashore on the narrow gravel beach. You'll find a short (1/4 mile) path into the forest, about mid point on the beach. May be a bit of flagging to mark it. If you walk this path you'll hit a paved road. Turn right and walk the road for 15 minutes to a beautiful provincial park. Lots of trails along the shore, and there are some amazing tide pools out on the flat rocky shelf.

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Phil M
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Phil M » Thu May 02, 2019 2:29 pm

Part of the crew will be a three year old and a five year old so parks and trails and tidal pools are definitely on the agenda. Thanks. :)

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Thu May 16, 2019 3:42 pm

I took the boat out first time this season, for a shakedown cruise prior to the mid-June circumnavigation of Vancouver Island. Put in on the mid-Columbia River, on the Wanapum Pool a little downriver from Wenatchee. It's a pretty stretch of river, roadless on both sides, and with steep basalt cliffs lining much of the river banks. The repaired autopilot worked just fine. I also checked out the cross over valve which connects my new pair of 18 gallon aluminum fuel tanks. They work just fine. It was a good chance to get my cruising buddy familiarized with the boat. As near as I can tell, all systems are operating properly, so now it's time to give the boat a good cleaning inside and out, and finalize provisioning and packing over the next couple of weeks. June 16 is the departure date. This cruise should take us into some great waters.

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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by KootsChewt » Tue Jun 04, 2019 3:50 pm

Looking forward to following your updates Chinook :) We'll be in the Ucluelet area June 18-21, but I don't think you'll be around that far yet!

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Wed Jun 05, 2019 3:18 pm

No, we'll be on the other side of the island then, just starting to head up the inside route. We plan to leave the dock in Oak Harbor on Monday, June 16, and won't get around to Ucluelet until late July. I'll begin posting the trip, as wifi connection permits, in a couple of weeks.

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:27 pm

Vancouver Island cruise is underway,just finished day 5, which was an epic 80 miler from Schooner Cove on the west side of the Strait of Georgia, all the way over to Refuge Cove, in the heart of Desolation Sound. We needed to make a long day, since we were blocked by high winds for 2 days. We holed up near Nanaimo, waiting for the stalled system to move off. We tried going out yesterday, but hit 5 and 6 foot seas just 2 miles out, and turned back. Today was much better. I'm posting a blog on the trip on my website: http://chinook.cecka.us. Pictures and text so far, but when I get the chance I'll add some video.

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Sat Jun 29, 2019 11:47 pm

We've made it as far as Port Hardy, posting daily on the blog. For the next couple of weeks we'll likely be out of communications, with no cell service on the west side of Vancouver Island. Things are going very well thus far, and we're really looking forward to seeing the waters and country on the outside of the island. Posts will catch up when we can get internet again.

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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by KootsChewt » Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:28 pm

I've read all your posts so far - great trip report :)

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Jimmyt
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Jimmyt » Thu Jul 04, 2019 11:00 pm

Thanks for posting and blogging Mike. Really enjoying reading and looking at the photos!

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:32 pm

Cruise is going great. We've had excellent conditions for getting around the two really challenging places, Cape Scott and the Brooks Penninsula. Cruising on the outside is delightful in this kind of weather. Swell has been about 1 foot most of the time, and often glassy smooth. Not great for sailing, but it has allowed us to pretty much travel at will. We had one really rainy day, but that happened to be a day we planned as layover at the public dock in Kyuquot, waiting for the only general store in this part of the West Coast to open. They got a new shipment of fresh produce on that day, so we're into green salads, fresh fruit and good bread again. Only problem with Kyuquot for provisioning is that the town is dry, and so are we. So, we're in Zabellos now, and finishing our provisioning, mainly beer, wine and grog, along with ice for the cooler. Wifi is only available in a few places out here, so I'll post to the blog when I can. Stay tuned.

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Sat Jul 27, 2019 9:06 am

We're sitting in Victoria, within a few miles of officially "crossing our wake". Once we do that, we will have proven that Captain George Vancouver actually got it right in claiming that this big mass of land we've been cruising around for the last 6 weeks actually is an island. Our last run, yesterday, was unique. We took off from Port Renfrew on the Strait of Juan de fu@ in heavy fog, and ran for 7 straight hours in the fog. Current was with us, so we ended up averaging 7 knots for the entire 54 nm distance. We didn't pop out of the fog until passing through Race Rocks Passage, at peak ebb. We came out into blue skies and bright sunshine. Quite the contrast. We've cruised 1007 nm thus far. On Monday we'll move over to Roche Harbor on San Juan Island, clear back into the US if they'll have us, and then officially consider our circumnavigation of Vancouver Island complete.

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Chinook
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Re: Thinking of Circumnavigating - Vancouver Island, that is

Post by Chinook » Thu Aug 08, 2019 11:58 am

Just to close the loop on this thread, we finished our circumnavigation of Vancouver Island last Wednesday, July 31. Total distance cruised was 1,082 nautical miles. Total time out: 45 days. The trip went great, not much I'd change. The pace worked out great, provisioning served well, fishing good, and weather better than I'd expected. We caught good breaks when getting past the major gateways of Cape Scott, Brooks Penninsula, Estevan Point and Strait of Juan de fu@. For anyone with a reasonably well maintained and equipped Mac, I'd heartily recommend going around Vancouver Island. Going during the most favorable season (July) and with an adequate time budget (I think at least 6 weeks should be available), this is definitely MacGregor water.

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