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post #1 of 10 Old 06-18-2012 Thread Starter
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West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

Part of our Summer trip this year will include a leg from Victoria to the Tofino area. I notice on the chart that there is a seasonal current that flows 2 knots north west in the winter and 1 1/2 knots south east in the summer.
My question for those that have done the trip is:
Can I expect a full 1 1/2 Knots on the nose all the way up? Does the tide change affect this current appreciably? Does the distance from shore or water depth make any difference?
Thanks for any input.
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post #2 of 10 Old 06-18-2012
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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

I'm in Barkley Sound, just made the run from Sooke a few days ago. The main current you'll have to deal with is Juan de Fuca. We caught a nice ebb and gained two knots over our normal motoring speed (no wind). During the flood from Port San Juan to Barkley I noticed about .5-1.0 knot that we were fighting. We're hoping for favorable winds on Wed. to sail to Tofino area, I'll let you know about the current. I did the same trip to Nootka a long time ago, but I don't remember if there was much of a current agin us or not.

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post #3 of 10 Old 06-18-2012
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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

I have found the current to be negligible. I am usually going counter clockwise, but I have gone west up Juan de Fuca a few times.

John is correct about the Strait, the currents can be quite strong. Stay out of the TSS and closer to shore except between Race Rocks and Sooke.

Once out of Juan de Fuca the currents are ocean currents, not affected by tides. Juan de Fuca however is a different story.

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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

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Originally Posted by jrd22 View Post
We're hoping for favorable winds on Wed. to sail to Tofino area, I'll let you know about the current.
John

Asking for favourable winds up to Tofino is asking for trouble. A SE wind does not portend good weather. A SW wind usually precedes a cold front.

If you are in Ucluelet, say hi to Steve Bird at the Small Boat Harbour for me. I will be there after mid July.

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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

Thanks for the input guys. We came down the other way a couple years ago but I couldn't remember if we had a little help or not. John, did you overnight in Port San Juan or just blast through?
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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

I don't recall any significant currents when we did the Victoria - Bamfield run over 15 hours in calm conditions. Lots of fog, but little current.

We did not consider Port San Juan. Straight through to Bamfield with a 4 am start. Port Renfrew/San Juan just didn't look inviting in the least.

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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

Thanks faster. That's similar to our current plan - dark and early start from Sooke on July 9th then up to Effingham.
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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

Port San Juan (Port Renfrew) is wide open to the south. The dock is fixed dock. I have been twice: once because the battery circuit as shorted out and the the batteries were so weak we could not start; the other time was after a Honolulu to PNW run when we took out the transmission with a piece of fishing net. Both times we sailed to the dock.

Needless to say, I like to give it a pass. The towns folk are a super bunch.

I am usually sailing (powering really) from Barkley Sound to Victoria and fit in an overnighter to Victoria.

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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

dilly-we went all the way. Left Sooke (just inside the spit) at 0430 to catch what was left of the ebb and arrived at Grappler Inlet (Bamfield) 12 hours later. Averaged 6 knots through the water, had a two knot push in JDF. We ran about three miles offshore.

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Re: West Coast Vancouver Island - Up Hill

Jack, I knew PSJ wasn't ideal but it's good to know you it can be used in a pinch.
John, it's alway good to get the details first hand from someone who has just done the trip. If your still in Tofino in 3 weeks I'll buy you a cold one!
BTW John, anyone can leave Sooke at first light, it takes a real hero to do it in the dark

Last edited by dillybar; 06-19-2012 at 01:02 AM.
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