Dec 14, 2017

Cheticamp 1While much is made of Cape Breton’s Celtic connections to Old Scotland there are also several vibrant Acadian communities on the island. The largest of these is the town of Cheticamp located on the island’s western shore, just south of the entrance to the Highlands National Park. The harbour is well protected and a good jumping off point for a trip to the Magdalen Islands or Eastern PEI.

Cheticamp 2
Cheticamp is the only deep draft harbour on the island’s west coast, with a channel dredged to 12 feet. As a base for a considerable commercial fishing fleet and a large boatbuilding operation, there are many services available. The Dobson Yacht Club in North Sydney maintains www.Cruising-Cape-Breton.info which has detailed information about the harbour and approaches:

Cheticamp 3“… A major expansion of the wharf at La Digue (at the north end of the harbour) has taken place recently and construction is ongoing at the new marine facility (Chéticamp Marina) in the south end of the harbour, including a travel-lift that can handle boats up to 250 tonnes. Although this is an Acadian settlement, English is widely spoken, being a major tourist centre on the Cabot Trail. Most facilities can be found here.

Navigation: Range lights on Caveau Point provide approach guidance, and will bring you onto the well-buoyed channel through the sandbars at the entrance. Once past La Digue and the sandbar from extending from Chéticamp Island, good depths are found throughout the harbour until past Chéticamp Marina. There is ample room to anchor. Cruisers need not worry about entering during lobster season, though dockage may be scarce at that time. Charges for overnight dockage at La Digue and the Town wharf are quite expensive.”
Cheticamp

Charts: Chéticamp Harbour CHS Chart #4464 – Chéticamp to Cape St Lawrence #4449

Services: Chéticamp, Grand Étang and Margaree Harbours Amenities: diesel, dockage, water, power Co-Op food store, Home Hardware, NSLC, Hospital (Sacred Heart Community Health Centre), Credit Union, Royal Bank of Canada, many eateries, service station (gas & diesel), hauling, layup”

The Harbour Authority of Chéticamp (Manages the fishing harbour, La Digue, and the public wharf) PO Box 178, Chéticamp, Inverness County, NS B0E 1H0 Phone: 902-224-3009 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Web: www.hacheticamp.ca

St PierreSt Pierre, Chéticamp

Although somewhat off he beaten track for cruising yachts Cheticamp is well worth a visit. There have been improvements to the boardwalk area and the town rewards a walkabout. The local “hookers”, Rug Hookers that is, are famous and St. Pierre, the Catholic Church is quite spectacular. Photographer Michel Soucy retired to the area a few years ago and his photos are well worth checking out at www.michelsoucy.ca.

All Photos by Michel Soucy

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By Joan Wenner, J.D.

Sailboat under cloudy sky by Bill Cox-Unsplash

Have you ever needed on-the-water assistance due to a mechanical breakdown, running aground, taking on water (perhaps from striking a submerged or floating object), having a mishap with another vessel, or have a medical emergency and the authorities are not near, but another mariner answers your mayday or perhaps observes your predicament. Another boater is in the vicinity, but will, or should, that person offer to help perhaps at his peril? What if you were that pleasure craft operator?

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ChicagoBy Mark Stevens

Photos by Sharon Matthews-Stevens


From my perspective on the observation deck of 360 Chicago in the John Hancock Building, I have an eagle’s-eye view of this Lake Michigan metropolis.

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