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Old 04-15-2013
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BC waters engineless?

Hi Folks!

I'm looking for more specific accounts of those who've sailed, drifted, and/or rowed around parts of Vancouver Island, in a keelboat without an engine, to make a passage and not daysail. Any leads may, in some way, help to determine how probable, and practical, myself sailing, in this way, would be, but the smaller the boat, the better.

And if someone's going to state the calms are too unpredictable and the current will send such a boat out of control, that's appreciated, but details on how unpredictable the calms are, how the tidal currents move on a small scale, and how the hull profile and rowing setup effect versatileness, would be better. Same thing with moorages, anchorages, and marina setups. What circumstances would make that use of such places too hard?

Thanks!

Alec
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Old 04-15-2013
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Re: BC waters engineless?

I appreciate the diplomatic couching of such an inflammmatory question about such a quixotic quest. If memory serves, there was a recent thread regarding this very topic here. Alas, i cannot find it , but perhaps you may have better luck searching.
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Old 04-15-2013
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Re: BC waters engineless?

Yes, this subject has been discussed, and the consensus was that the light winds and strong currents make it extremely challenging if you want to get to particular destinations, I guess if you were willing to go wherever the winds and current take you it can be done, but be prepared to be stuck out there for extended periods of time if you have no other means of propulsion. You certainly couldn't sail through any of the passes, or at least it would be foolish to try.
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Old 04-15-2013
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Re: BC waters engineless?

Its not easy, get a tide chart, throw your watch overboard, take a deep breath and enjoy the fact that you are one of only a handful of real sailors in the Salish Sea. People have been doing it for hundreds of years.
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An interesting book for you would be wind and tides J fitzgerald.
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Old 04-15-2013
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Re: BC waters engineless?

I don't imagine you'll get a lot of real life experience stories (except from kayakers) as not too many people around here would consider such a plan.

Definitely will have difficulty working to any sort of schedule, I did meet a young couple on a small catamaran who were cruising Georgia Strait and Desolation engineless.. they were getting around but summer in the inside waters can be notoriously calm and you could wait a long while for good conditions.

You could almost get short distances each day on tides alone, that would take a lot of planning and a willingness to move at less than prime times.
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Re: BC waters engineless?

Sailing engine-less in BC area for 50 years in a boat made on the beach from drift wood.
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Old 04-16-2013
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Re: BC waters engineless?

I guess I want to know if you are doing this for a reason like proving yourself, or if it's just because you cant afford an engine or fuel. I'm not trying to be insulting, but some people get a boat with no engine or an engine that doesn't work and want to know if they can use it 'as is'.

Otherwise, how small are you talking about" If it was tiny and was made to be efficiently rowed it might work, but would it be any fun?

From my limited experience up there, the first thing I told my friend, 'glad I got a good engine'

The wind is super fluky. And often as light as possible. It changes directions constantly. It's just not fun without an engine. At least that's my opinion.

Unless you have done it all already and need a new challenge to prove yourself, why make it any harder on yourself? It already has plenty of challenges, you can always go farther. Set a goal to go to Alaska, not drift around in a circle day after day.
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Old 04-16-2013
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Re: BC waters engineless?

It's interesting comparing the negative tone here with the positive one over on Sailing Anarchy:
sailing BC waters engineless? - Cruising Anarchy - Sailing Anarchy Forums

There are plenty of engineless sailors in this region on smaller (27-32') cruising boats. Most of them can even afford engines, they just like doing without. I think it's awesome if you give it a try.
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Old 04-16-2013
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Re: BC waters engineless?

The skills to sail without engine are not lost.. they are just not practiced. Realize also back in the day.. people did have crew on boats without engines. More times then not, said crew was found rowing a tender and pulling the mother ship!
If you want to sail engine less. noting is stopping you.. the fact you asked; eh.. guess you don't know how.
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Re: BC waters engineless?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SchockT View Post
Yes, this subject has been discussed, and the consensus was that the light winds and strong currents make it extremely challenging if you want to get to particular destinations, I guess if you were willing to go wherever the winds and current take you it can be done, but be prepared to be stuck out there for extended periods of time if you have no other means of propulsion.
If you're thinking of a consensus that's not a part of this thread, who was a part of it?
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