Returning to Anacortes, Washington from a summer of cruising meant starting the mode of heads-down to edit, write, and organize all the updates, photos and reference maps in preparation of producing the 2019 edition of the Waggoner Cruising Guide. Literally hundreds of updates were collected thanks to the enthusiastic work of our volunteer Field Correspondents along with Editors Mark, Lorena and Leonard, all of whom spent the summer cruising the Pacific Northwest, researching the many marinas and anchorages found in the Waggoner Cruising Guide. Field Correspondents were formally organized for the 2018 cruising season and have been an integral part of our data gathering process. Boaters can look forward to finding many important updates in each chapter of the Waggoner Guide, along with new and updated reference maps in the 2019 edition. New anchorages have been added to West Coast Vancouver Island and Haida Gwaii chapters along with re-writes for new material.You might be asking, what’s the new theme for 2019? The 2018 theme of ‘Early Maritime Explorers of the Pacific Northwest,’ proved to be well received along with other improvements made to the Waggoner Guide, resulting in record sales. Likewise, we think you will enjoy ‘Nautical Tales through the Eyes of the Past,’ our chosen theme for 2019. How many of us have wondered what took place on an island, or village in earlier times? Learning something about the history of the places we visit, brings a whole new appreciation and perspective for our many cherished boating destinations. You won't want to miss the 2019 edition containing synopsis of 15 non-fiction books that are both fascinating and enlightening, you might even hear yourself say, “I didn’t know that!” Speaking of history, 2019 is the 25th Anniversary of the Waggoner Cruising Guide, which has provided the most concise and comprehensive information for boaters cruising the Pacific Northwest for the past 25 years. The Waggoner name is taken in honor of the "Waggoners" of the late 1500's. Dutch pilot, Lucas Waghenaer, published a volume of principles, charts, and sailing directions in Dutch, German, Latin, and English, used by sailors of the time. The modern-day Waggoner, updated each year, carries on the tradition of valuable information and resources for today's mariners. We think you’ll love the 2019 edition and look forward to seeing you at the Seattle Boat Show, starting January 25, 2019.
Tuesday, August 14, 2018
|Bike Paths and Walking Paths circle the city of Vancouver|
We spent a week in the beautiful city of Vancouver BC catching up on some work and taking the time to go out on the town. Boating friends, Knut and Christine, met up with us for a couple of days, and previous neighbors from Eugene, Oregon happened to be in Vancouver and stopped by our boat to say hello. Our nephew, John, arrived the following day and joined us aboard Got d’Fever to spend some time with us touring this incredible city. Vancouver has so much to offer that one could spend an entire season here and not run out of things to see and do. The best part, you don’t need a car to get around, thanks to the efficient public transportation which includes buses, the Sky Train subway, and water taxis. Bicycles really come in handy, as the entire city is linked with bicycle paths that interconnect with all the waterfronts, bordered with lovely parks, beaches, marinas and cafes. You would have to work hard not to have fun in this cosmopolitan city. Last year we moored the boat at Quayside Marina on the north shore of False Creek; this year we moored our boat at Fishermen’s Wharf, just west of Granville Island.
It’s a short walk from Fishermen’s Wharf to
the excellent indoor Farmers Market, shops and cafes on Grandville Island, the
perfect place to pick up some great produce for the galley, along with artisan
breads and baked goods. There are
several theatres with stage performances on Granville Island, including the
Improv Centre, which we enjoyed with John.
Fishermen’s Wharf is also within bicycling or walking distance of Vanier
Park, located northwest of the wharf in the Kitsilano district of town, home to
the Maritime Museum and the Museum of Vancouver. From early June to mid-September, the
Shakespeare Festival, called “Bard on the Beach,” is held under the tents in
Vanier Park. It’s best to reserve
tickets ahead of time for this popular event.
Serious boaters will appreciate the Maritime Museum, showcasing the Arnold
176 Chronometer used by Captain George Vancouver during his 5-year voyage of
the Pacific. The chronometer was made
prior to 1787 by John Arnold of London, who numbered all of his time
pieces. These time pieces helped the navigator
plot longitude. If the chronometer ran
too fast or too slow, calculations would be in error so ships often carried
Also on display is
the lead line, sextant, and telescope used by Lieutenant Joseph Baker, who
sailed with George Vancouver. The lead
line helped sailors learn how deep the water was and if the bottom was sand,
gravel, or mud. Knots or tags on the
line were counted as the line slipped through the hands, thus measuring the
bottom depth; a fathom equals about two meters or six feet. A sextant measures the angular distances between two visible objects such as the sun and the horizon to determine latitude. A sextant can also be used to measure the lunar distance between the moon and another celestial object (a star or planet) in order to determine Greenwich Mean Time and hence longitude. The sextant, used by Lieutenant Baker, had
five eyepieces. The
operator needed to make several adjustments using the index glass and the
horizon glass; clear weather was important when making these observations. Joseph Baker owned his own telescope; and while
looking through his eyepiece, he spied a conspicuous mountain above the
clouds. Captain Vancouver credited his lieutenant
by naming the mountain, Mount Baker.
Another highlight of the museum is the refurbished 1927 St Roch, built at Burrard Dry Dock Co.
of Vancouver, for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. The ship was used as a patrol and supply ship
in the western Arctic for more than 20 years.
Each year, the RCMP sailed St Roch
from Vancouver, loaded with supplies destined for the western Artic.
|The Granville Market has fresh produce, meats and baked goods|
|Captain George Vancouver's Chronometer|
|Lieutenant Baker's Lead Line, Sextant, and Telescope|
|RCM St Roch successfully sailed the Northwest Passage|
|Fore deck of the St. Roch|
|The Steam Clock in Gastown|
|The Olympic Cauldron|
|The impressive new Vancouver House Condos|
|The new Concord Pacific Condo Complex|
|Canadian Pacific Railway 374 Steam Engine|
|Nephew John checking out the 374 Engine|
|The Train Roundhouse now serves as a Community Centre|
|The beautiful Vancouver City Hall on Robson Street|
|Cafes are found inside the Vancouver Public Library on Robson|
|View of Grandville Island from Fishermen's Wharf|
Wednesday, August 8, 2018
|Emerald Green waters and majestic mountains in Howe Sound|
Howe Sound is incredibly beautiful, it's no wonder that this area was selected when shooting scenes for the movie Double Jeopardy; the majestic mountains and emerald green waters are the perfect background for sailing and ferry boat scenes. Our clockwise exploration of Howe Sound, starting from Gibsons, took us up the west side to Squamish (see previous blog post about Squamish), and back south down the east side of the Sound.
There are several anchorages within the Sound, a few small marine parks, and even a Provincially designated site
for burial of ashes at sea, called Mariners’ Rest. Look for the stainless-steel cross on a rock
islet off the west coast of Gambier Island in Thornbrough Channel.
Mariners’ Rest is dedicated to the
remembrance of mariners, who have passed on; the “Mission to Seafarers” serves as custodian. The burial at sea of
ashes are conducted offshore, not on the island; no one may go ashore or add
anything to the islet. The "Mission to
Seafarers" provides help and emotional support to captains and crew in over 200
ports around the world, including providing welfare and spiritual support
services. The year 2006, marked the 150th
anniversary of ministry to seafarers, and a special memorial service was held
at Mariners’ Rest in Howe Sound.
Howe Sound is too deep for anchoring, but there are enough places to drop the
hook and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
Anchorage can be found in the Defence Islands, on the north side of the 73
Meter Island depicted on charts. The two
Defence Islands are IR (Indian Reserve) property.
Further north, along the mainland, is the interesting bay of Zorro with ruins of a wharf, a nice beach and hiking trails. Anchoring depths vary depending on how far off shore you anchor or whether you use a stern-tie.
|A recognizable peak in Howe Sound, shown in the movie Double Jeopardy|
|Approaching northern Defence Island|
|Zorro Bay Anchorage|
|Porteau Cove Marine Park|
|Halkett Bay (public dock on left)|
|Rafting up with friends in Port Graves|
|Knut with his walking stick|
|Christine and Leonard crossing a log bridge|
|Beautiful mountain backdrop on the way to Snug Cove|
|Adorable buildings and boardwalks at Union Steamship Marina|
|Snug Cove has many delightful cafes|
|Union Steamship Marina|
Sunday, August 5, 2018
Gibsons is a great jumping off point for exploring Howe Sound. Most boaters stay in the southern reaches of Howe Sound, namely Gibsons; Snug Cove on Bowen Island; and the anchorages on the south side of Gambier Island. Very few pleasure boaters venture through the emerald green waters further north, and even fewer go to Squamish at the head of Howe Sound, and that’s a shame.
Like us, some boaters may remember Squamish as a quiet, sleepy town
with little to offer from a boater's perspective. When we arrived at Squamish, the town we
remembered couldn’t be found; it had disappeared and something new has taken its place.
This vibrant, active town filled with young
people and young families, is now the place to be. Condos have sprung up all along the waterway where the marinas are located, and more apartments and condos are
currently under construction. We shouldn’t
be surprised that people are drawn to this beautiful location surrounded by majestic mountains, a place that offers many outdoor activities: rock climbing, mountain biking, snow
skiing, and kite boarding, and numerous sport clubs.
|The beautiful town of Squamish has much to offer|
|Great pubs and eateries are found in Squamish|
|Squamish is the site of Canada's largest kite boarding competition|
|Don't miss the gondola ride with views of Squamish and Howe Sound|
|Views of Howe Sound, with its emerald green waters, from Summit Lodge are spectacular|
|The Suspension Bridge at Summit Lodge is an added thrill|
|The Summit Lodge via the Gondola|
|The Saturday Farmers' Market at Squamish has quality produce and craft products|
|Enter the Mamquam Channel on mid or high tides|
|Docks at Squamish Yacht Club|
|Harbour Authority of Squamish Boat Harbour|
|Condos along the Stawamus River in Squamish|
Friday, August 3, 2018
|Harbour Authority Docks and breakwater at Gibsons|
Visiting the town of Gibsons is like experiencing a colorful tapestry of boats, people, and cafes. Lunitas Mexican, Molly’s Reach, Smitty’s Oyster House, and Smoke on the Water BBQ Shack are among some of the favorite eateries in the waterfront district.
And of course, Mike’s Place Gelato shouldn’t be overlooked; the choice
of flavors is among the best and the quality is excellent. More food products, baked goods, and
handcrafted products can be found at the Sunday Market, held at the public
library and Town Hall parking lot from 10 am to 3 pm from May through
If you need groceries for the
boat’s galley, Gibsons Public Market on Grower Point Road (upland from Gibsons
Marina) has fresh fruit, produce, and quality meats; a touch-tank aquarium is
located upstairs. The Public Market is
open year-round, Tuesday through Sunday. The variety of boats that come and go
at Gibsons is also vibrant, with sport and commercial fish boats, sailboats,
yachts and service boats that find their way in and out of the busy harbour
Guest moorage at the Harbour
Authority docks on the west side of the pier is first-come, first-serve, but
you can call 30 minutes ahead to inquire about available space.
Reservations are accepted for boats over 45
feet, which are assigned to the concrete float located outside the harbour
breakwater on the northeast side of the pier. Power on the concrete float but no water at this time; plans are in the works to
add an additional concrete float for large vessel moorage and provide water to
the floats. Boaters can also call for
reservations at Gibsons Marina, located on the south side of the Harbour Authority
docks. Guest moorage is in unoccupied
slips with a maximum boat length of 40 feet; larger vessels can be accommodated
at a side-tie dock when space becomes available. No longer a sleepy little town, big changes
are coming to Gibsons. A hotel, condo
complex, with associated docks, is slated to be constructed just south of
Winegarden Waterfront Park. Demolition
and clearing of the property has already begun.
At this time, it is not known if the condo docks at the new “Gorge
Complex” will include space for transient moorage.
Growth is coming to town, and locals have
mixed reactions; some welcome the change, while others want things to remain
the same. Like other towns near
Vancouver B.C., Gibsons is seeing new money and new growth in the form of chic
condos and a growing population. Like it
or not, change is a fact of life and the tapestry continues to grow.
|Harbour Authority Office and docks, town restaurants in the background|
|Gibsons Public Market, convenient location for boaters|
|The Pier at Gibsons provides great views of the town and harbour|
|Concrete float for larger vessels with reservations|
|The town of Gibsons is charming with additional growth on the way|