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Stephane99 01-30-2012 09:00 PM

Good Georgian Bay port for a Sailboat
After sailing on Lake Ontario for several years, we decided to move our Jeanneau Atalia sailboat to Georgian Bay for a summer or more. We are planning to take the boat from Toronto via the Welland canal, Lake Erie, Lake Huron to a location in Georgian Bay this summer.

The big question is where to bring it to in Georgian Bay? We have two kids (14 and 10) and a dog. it seems that a lot of the places are catering to power boaters.

We would drive up from Toronto with the idea of taking 3 days week-end when sailing. Looking for area with easy access to anchoring spots that would be not too crowded.

Any recommendations?

bljones 01-30-2012 10:32 PM

Close(ish) to Toronto, good gateway to the bay, lots of amenities. if you want to drop the mast, you could travel up the Trent-Severn rather than looping through Erie-Huron

chantler 01-31-2012 09:03 AM

No doubt Midland / Penetang area have some good marinas, but if you want to get away from the crowd, move north. I grew up at Sans Souci and still work there every day from ice out to freeze up so when I bought my C&C I decided I didn't want to spend my weekends at the "office". We are located in Britt and love it. There are not as many islands to tuck behind [as the south end of the bay] for sure but we never had an issue finding a private spot.
Extra time in the car though !

chamonix 01-31-2012 09:37 AM

I'd recommend the Midland/Penatang area. Just about any spot on Georgian Bay will give you plenty of anchoring spots close at hand. Advantage of Midland/Penatang is the waters are very sheltered, lots of marinas, and good access to the a lot if islands or the main body of Georgian Bay. Disadvatage is that it can get busy at weekend including the more popular anchorages. The narrows into Penatang can look like the 401 on a Sunday afternoon( OK maybe not thaqt bad ).You can go further north as Chantler suggests but that makes for a much longer drive from Toronto and I don't like to spend my weekend driving. As for marinas, I,m at Bay Port in Penatang. Good spot, lots of kids and dogs, plus it has more sailboats than any other marina in the area (about 50/50 ).
Also, if you don't have a chart plotter then get one, and be prepared to do a lot of tacking and gybing at least in the
severn Sound area.

flyingwelshman 01-31-2012 10:49 AM

As has been said: Midland/Penetang are easily accessible from TO. Lot's of crowds and sometimes crowded anchorages - but you hav a lot of choices.
There are some nice spots all around Beausoleil Island, Bone Island, Languisa (sp?) etc. It only takes about 5ish hours to get over to Hope Island, Beckwith Island, Christian Island. Or you can head up the small craft through Monument Channel, Indian Harbour etc. Getting as far as 12-mile Bay in a day is easily doable.
If you look a bit further up (around Killbear etc.) you can get into some nice areas like Franklin Island (Regatta Bay etc.) and Shawanaga, and it's not a big struggle to get down to Sans Succi and the Massassauga.
You kind of have to skip from Midland to the other side of Parry Sound. There are some nice spots in between but it takes a bit to get 'outside'.
I would avoid the southern Bay (Collingwood, Meaford etc.) I don't find the sailing as interesting there (scenery wise).
The West side of the Bay (from Wiarton up to Cabot Head) is very scenic, but there aren't as many little anchorages as there are on the East side.
Just my opinion.....

Stephane99 01-31-2012 08:10 PM

Thanks for the great info. It confirms what I was thinking, Midland is a great spot because it would be a shorter drive and has a lot to offer, however it will have to share the beauty with a lot of folks.

If I drive an extra 2 hours, I will get very quiet and nice but will spend 4 hours more in the car.

Chantier, I tried to search where you are in Britt, are you at Wright's Marina? From the map on google it looks like it is 3 miles to get to Georgian bay, is this correct? Do you have to motor for 30 mins before you can get out in the bay? It does look like a nice a quiet spot.

We looked at doing the Trent Severn but we have too much draft, when we called we were told that anything more than 5 feet is risky.

Stephane99 01-31-2012 08:16 PM

Quick question for Chamonix, did you mean Bay Mooring in Penatang? Bay Port is in Midland.


chantler 01-31-2012 09:30 PM

We are docked at St. Amants. They have a store, gas, pumpout, propane etc. but are about 1 mile inland of Wrights Marina. Yes it is a bit of a trek out to the bay proper but last summer we were able to sail at least 1 way [out to the bay or back home] every time we went out ,which was every weekend. On a couple of occasions we had an east wind to take us out in the a.m. and then sailed home on a west wind the same afternoon. Whereever you end up on the Bay I'm sure you will enjoy it. It will take a lifetime of holidaying ? [sp] to see it all.

chamonix 02-02-2012 12:46 AM

That was Bay Moorings in Penatang. Bay Port is in midland. The same company own three marinas in the area, The two mentioned above and a third at the bottom of Penetang horbour ( sorry can't remember the third marinas name ). When we got our boat two years ago we looked at all three. We liked Bay Moorings the best. Found Bay Port to big, expensive, featureless( as far as scenery not facilities ). The nameless one at the bottom of Penetang had me worried about draft issues, and was mostly power boats. Bay Moorings has decent scenery, lots of depth for keels, lots of sailboats and is generaly a friendly. Kind of pissed off though they had a nice hotel/bar/ that the removed last winter. Had a great all you can eat Sunday brunch that I miss, and was a great place to store the relatives when they came up.

chamonix 02-02-2012 12:56 AM

Reread your post, your right I screwed up, I'm at bay Moorings not Bay Port. The other Marina is a Bay something. I'm easily confused and all the Bays are messing with my head.

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