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i have never wanted to sail at night around here because of all of the logs and crab/prawn traps, but obviously several races go overnight so i assume its quite doable.

anyone have any experience/thoughts/comments on the matter?
 

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Yes, lots of logs in the water up there, we fished north of Campbell River for many years.

We ran at night in & out of San Francisco Bay in the boat below. In the Bay, land based lights can be a distraction. Outside, steady lights means ships and or tugs with barges way behind them, which can be deceiving. At times, because of rough weather in the Bonita Channel, we used the ship channel, not our first choice, however.

As we didn't have radar, & it was before GPS, I was never very comfortable running at night, especially when it was rough. Yes, many people do run at night, but I wouldn't do it unless it was absolutely necessary, it was not fun for us. Picture below is the Bonita Channel. The breaker is inside of the channel marker, pucker time. :D

Paul T
 

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There are not going to be any crab pots in the Juan de Fuca Strait or Haro Strait. Obviously one needs to be extra vigilant in the bays during the season. Yes there are some logs and other flotsam floating around. I have never found it to be a problem. If you're not comfortable running at night, don't do it. Know your limits, I say. I, myself have never found it to be a problem. You can make the most of favorable currents sometimes in the dark.
 

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There are not going to be any crab pots in the Juan de Fuca Strait or Haro Strait. Obviously one needs to be extra vigilant in the bays during the season. Yes there are some logs and other flotsam floating around. I have never found it to be a problem. If you're not comfortable running at night, don't do it. Know your limits, I say. I, myself have never found it to be a problem. You can make the most of favorable currents sometimes in the dark.
Our primary concern in & out of San Francisco bay was the heavy amount of commercial traffic. We have taken many trips on the ferry MV COHO, from Anacortes to Victoria, but other than that, we have no hands on experience in the Victoria area.

With GPS, AIS, & radar it would have been easier/safer for us. I just never got comfortable with it, but that is just me, maybe if I did it for many years running, I would have become used to it? The OP may want to consider going out at night with an experienced skipper to see how it actually is?

Paul T
 

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When I teach intermediate level courses we do a 4-5 hour night sail. On more advanced courses we go a 2-3 overnight trips.

I think I have hit as many logs during the day as I have at night. Luckily I have not hit a deadhead. Some logs lurk just underneath the surface. Radar will not pick up a log.

As for traffic, it is just as important to be seen as to seeing. Make you have a good radar reflector; if it is an octahedral, the catch rain position is essential. Check you nav lights. As for seeing, radar is mandatory, and an AIS is nice. I also will check with vessel traffic services to find out what traffic I may encounter, I also monitor VTS channels.
 
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