Tag Archives: Canada

Boat Work in Canada

After our crossing to the Pacific Coast with a lot of mileage and severe weather, we where in need of some maintenance and repairs, spare parts and improvements.

James Conan, ronan.associates-at-gmail the Canadian representative of the Seattle Seawind dealership contacted us and helped us with all kinds of contacts, advice, arrangements etc. Thanks James

James arranged a meeting with Philbrooks Boatyard (PB) in Van Isle Marina at Sidney B.C. Our liancé, project manager is Daniel Thompson, daniel.thompson-at-philbrooks-period-com, who talked us through our wishes, helped us with the planning, did the estimates and introduced us to a lot of his fantastic colleges etc. etc. A few tips and tricks to maximize the experience:

  1. Prepare your work list in advance and send it to Daniel at least two weeks before arriving in Canada, 
  2. Make sure there is room in the PB planning, so if you arrive at Van Isle Marina, they can start right away,
  3. If you want to apply for the work to be tax free, (12% in summer 2023)
    • you need to be a non-Canadian vessel;
    • Van Isle Marina must be your first port of entrance, yes there is a customs dock;
    • ask PB to obtain the waiver before starting any work,
  4. Any expertise not available, like a certified gas technician, will be arranged by PB;
  5. You can ‘shop’ at the PB supply room. Marcus, the guy in charge, is a walking encyclopedia, well connected to any supplier. He managed to find my a few exotic Lewmar parts, busses for my water pump, soft cradle for my outboard etc etc.
  6. It helps if you are on board and helps with the jobs, to build up your own knowledge, less hours and expectations-execution, results close to each other.

We like the Canadian way of doing things. Knowledgeably, skilled, no language barrier, hourly rates are better than US WA rates, good work ethics, friendly.

We like Sidney B.C because their are 2 Chandleries, A Yanmar dealer, UK  sails for  a repair and Blackline, also a Boatyard with a rigging department to help us with some issues

We liked PB for their work and reasonable docking prices. We did some extra projects.

We like Sidney B.C. because Victoria Int. Airport is extually in Sidney, easy bus right to Victoria, shops, grocery, a few nice restaurants etc. And the summer weather in B.C. is top. For us none US/Canadian buying a local (prepaid) SIM made everything so much easier in communication. From calling a cab to a reservation. 

 It’s a great place to start some motor-sailing the famous Gulf Islands and surroundings.

Cruising in B.C. Canada

At the end of this beautiful summer we are cruising in the B.C. area, East coast of Vancouver Island. The first two months of our journey where special, as in not moving around. So after arriving at the Victoria Customs Dock, we docked in Maple Bay Marina and took a 12 days break to the NL. There after we moved to Van Isle Marina where we spend 5 weeks at the dock of the Philbrooks Boatyard.

And now we are cruising for 6 weeks in B.C. until our visa expires at the end of September 2023. An overview of our route and some impressions. In general we had lovely warm weather, with little wind and less rain. The temperatures at night are slowly dropping to 10C. Winter is coming.

  • Jacobs ladder at Nanaimo
  • View on Nanaimo
  • Anchored at Newcastle, Mark Bay
  • Heavy equipement on it's way too an island
  • Lighttower at Entrance Island
  • All alone in an inlet on Prevost Island
  • Bus to Humingbird Restaurant, Galiano Island
  • Montaque Harbor marine park
  • Anchorge at Montaque Harbor
  • Winter Cove at Saturna Island
  • Church Cove, Saturna
  • Kelp
  • Clean your panels or your capacity decreases
  • Port Browing North Pender
  • Otter Bay Harbor North Pender
  • Stern Tie 25 mtr from shore, Royal Cove Portland Island

Royal Cove

It’s on the North, more isolated, side of Portland Island. Uninhabited and completely a National Park. I went for a hike. Pretty easy an a sunny day. But It would be partly intermediate on a wet day. I discovered the Parks Canada App, useful.

  • Royal Cove at Portland Island B.C.
  • Stern Tie 25 mtr from shore, Royal Cove Portland Island

Butchart Gardens

Lovely garden and with a dedicated mooring in Butchart Cove. Tod’s Inlet is around the corner and a popular anchor place with a soft muddy bottom. The inlet was crowded and I could not use enough chain so our anchor keeps dragging. We see a lot of people arriving late, grep a private mooring and leave early in the morning. In Angler’s Anchorage Marina their is Blue’s Bayou Cafe, nice for drinks and a meal. Park your dinghy at the public dinghy dock, left off the marina.

  • Back enterance of Butchart Garden
  • Angler's Anchorage Marina at Brentwood Bay
  • Mooring in Butchart Cove
  • Blue's Bayou Cafe

Van Isle Marina

We had a very lay back time at Van Isle, did one chore a day at most, biked multiple times to Sidney town for a little bit of shopping, groceries, a fair, the Vancouver distillery etc. In the weekend multiple visits, by public bus, to Victoria. And off course a lot of visits to All Bay Marine, Vector Yacht Services Ltd (Yanmar dealer) and Canada Tire and Co-op McDonald Park Road Gas Centre for propane/lpg. And a lot of afternoon tea, early drinks, diners and other leisure activities.

  • New J-mount for StarLink
  • New bracket for Outboard. Much easier to handle now
  • Vigs, Blue Cheese and Rosé. Life is hard during the summer in Sidney B.C.
  • Sound dempers for our fresh water pump
  • Very Oelala
  • Heating up the Starboard engine prior to an oil change
  • Heating up the Port engine prior to an oil change
  • 250 hrs maintenance, all filters and oil
  • Cleaning inlets and free the speed paddle after 6 weeks of doing nothing.