altDon’t call me Ishmael.

No apocryphal white whale for me, no leaking longboat bristling with harpoons.

Our vessel is more seaworthy, our crew and passenger manifest less motley. We will not kill the great leviathans that pierce the skin of the sea, we will merely share their playground.

We will also share the lives of the people of the sea on Canada’s great island, skimming over waters once plied by Basque and Portuguese fishermen, past shores explored a thousand years ago by Vikings,

dest-canada-back_to-small“So you’re back,” says Canadian Yacht Charters co-proprietor Ken Blodgett as if it hasn’t been a year since we’d last seen him.

“I’m back.” I sit down on a Muskoka chair beside Blodgett just outside their office, snugged down on the shores of Gore Bay on Manitoulin Island’s north shore.

I stare at the waters – dark green and mysterious in the late afternoon.

destinations-canada-first_steps-smallYou're not quite sure how or when this happened, but the casual thought of going off cruising someday is starting to become a goal you're taking more seriously. Perhaps at the moment you don't know if, given your current circumstances, it's even possible to say goodbye to the rat race for a while and set sail for warmer climes, but you'd sure like to check it out!

destinations-canada-bruce-smallA rugged path strewn with rocks slices through a dense stand of cedar just beyond a red-roofed square wooden lighthouse squatting beside Georgian Bay on the furthest reaches of Ontario's Bruce Peninsula.

You trudge along this path that meanders through forests boasting five-hundred-year-old trees; you deeply inhale the cedar aroma. Then the forest thins and you emerge onto a plain of stone and sand and shale.

destinations-canada-best_of_bc-smallThe Gulf Islands of British Columbia envelop a beautifully diverse cruising ground – an alluring and accessible pocket of paradise. Boaters will be charmed by each island's distinctive character and lured by clean sandy beaches, sheltered bays, hideaway anchorages, spectacular sunsets and abundant wildlife. In addition, the area's marine parks are unique to British Columbia's coast and are often only accessible by water.

destinations-canada-dream_cruise-smallMost cruises are based on a destination: "When school finishes, we are going to take the kids on a summer cruise of Georgian Bay." "When I retire, I want to sail through the islands of the Caribbean for a couple of years." "We're going to ship our motorboat over to Europe and explore the Med for a few seasons." "We're going to sail around the world!"

destinations-canada-financial_matters-smallMost people believe that long-term cruising is expensive but it certainly doesn't have to be. When we first cut the docklines in 1989 we were surprised at how our monthly fixed expenses dropped when we let the apartment go, sold the car, and suddenly didn't have rent to pay or home and car insurance premiums. The cable TV fees stopped, as did our fitness club memberships. Costly commuting expenses disappeared. No longer working in offices, our clothing budget dropped drastically since our wardrobe simplified and cruising in the tropics didn't demand several sets of seasonal clothes.

destinations-canada-cruising_pay-smallTravelling by boat, as I'm sure you'll agree, offers many pleasures and freedoms but can present plenty of challenges and high-stress moments as well. Adding financial stress to the adventure can really take the fun out of cruising so, as we discussed in our last article, it's important to maintain a good financial base when cruising. As in life ashore, financial security provides freedom and peace of mind. The ability to earn a living while cruising then seems the ultimate freedom.

destinations-canada-part_time-smallThere is a misunderstood notion that to become a long-term, long-distance cruising sailor it is necessary to truly cut the docklines by selling everything and leaving. You know, get rid of the house, quit your job, and wave goodbye to the rat race. Paul and I have been cruising now for 18 years and can assure you that this just isn't so. In fact, the happiest long-term cruisers we meet are most often those who have found a pleasurable balance between life afloat and life ashore.

destinations-canada-home_base-smallThe decision to cast off the dock lines and undertake a long-term cruise involves considerate financial planning from establishing a budget for outfitting your boat, travelling expenses, insurance, sightseeing costs, maintenance and repairs, and changing costs of living as you move from destination to destination. So it's no surprise that in the process of planning a cruise, the topic of whether or not it's economical to maintain a home base while you're away nearly always comes up.

Mediterranean Shakedown: A Summer Cruise in Spain

Mediterranean ShakedownBy Sheryl and Paul Shard

This summer my husband, Paul, and I bought our fourth offshore cruising boat, a new Southerly 480 built by Discovery Yachts in the UK. It’s a unique boat with a retractable variable-draft swing keel giving you the option of sailing with a deep draft of 3.1 metres when the keel is down or just less than a metre with the keel fully retracted. Southerly Yachts are great for bluewater sailing and also for gunkholing in shallow creeks and inland waterways. You can even dry them out at low tide so they are is the perfect boat for the type of exploring we like to do. Our new boat, Distant Shores III, is the third Southerly Yacht that we’ve owned over 29 years of international cruising to destinations in the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Middle East, UK, Scandinavia and South America. This boat we plan to sail to the South Pacific.

Read more about the Shards' cruise in Spain...

 

Lifestyle

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This issue, to kick off 2019, we have an unofficial Photo of the week and this, the unofficial ...
Readers give us a bit of feedback on the 60th anniversary of the Shark 24
We are home for Christmas this year. Soon we will be heading back to Adamant 1 for another winter ...
This past October we drove to Telegraph Cove with friends and spent a day of wonder cruising the ...
We have kept our subscription to Canadian Yacht Onboard as we have traveled the South Pacific over ...
Stuart Walker a legend in competitive sailing passed away on November 12, 2018 in Annapolis. Stuart ...
“In Grenada, we had about 80 cruiser kids visit our boat...by dinghy of course! Sometimes you ...
Austin Edwards told students and parents at the Saanich School’s “Parents as Informed Partners” ...
As the sole arbiter of the Photo of the Week I, your editor, get to make the choice. This week, ...
Michele Stevens pointed us to this interesting project which recently came to fruition in Cape ...

Boat Reviews

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To get you in the mood for cruising the Boat Show then launching in spring, here’s a boat that ...
Quite simply, the styles of boats have changed. Where in past years a buyer might have been looking ...
At the boat shows, the Ranger Tugs’ classic tugboat lines always grab the crowds, with the wives ...
Sometimes a great idea requires an encore, and French yacht builder Jeanneau got that with the ...
Tactical Custom Boats announces the sale to a North American client of a custom Tactical 77’ – Fast ...
Bruce Elliott is an inventor. And when he sold the technology he developed to build utility poles ...
One often asks of a winning achievement or a fabulous design, could it have possibly been done ...
The latest new model from Cruisers Yachts is the Cantius 42 and this yacht made its debut in the ...
The Sabre 45 Salon Express is new for 2017, making its debut at the Fort Lauderdale International ...

Beneteau Antares 27

Beneteau Antares 27By Andy Adams and John Armstrong

You have to love it when something exceeds your expectations on so many levels; the new Antares 27 from Beneteau looks to me like that sort of all-around overachiever.

This is a brand new express cruiser design. With twin Mercury 200 V6 outboards, it delivers impressive performance, a reassuring and comfortable ride, and a level of versatility that will enable this boat to be your vacation partner for all sorts of adventures.

Read more about the Antares 27...

 

 

 

 

Hanse 388

Hanse 388By Katherine Stone

The Hanse group produced their second most popular boat of all time with the Hanse 385. The trick was to build on that winning formula when they upgraded to the Hanse 388, which they have done in spades. The German build quality is first rate and true to the Hanse tradition. Leaving the hull the same with a steep stern and straight stem for an optimal long water line, they went with a slightly stiffer, heavier displacement, new deck, interior layout and window line. Hanse’s highly experienced yacht construction team, judel/vrolijk & co., have combined ease of sailing, comfort and performance into the newly designed Hanse 388.

Read More about the Hanse 388...

 

 

 

DIY & How to

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Winter is a great time to look at some of the hidden spaces on your boat – to take stock of what is ...
When a boat is in the water, the bilge will often collect water that enters the boat from weather, ...
Recently I suggested doing an off-season (winter) project with a potential client, and my ...
A recent conversation with a fellow contractor got me thinking: With all of the information out ...
As the cold approaches, shrink-wrapping is a hot topic, and I’ve heard more than a few debates at ...
Nothing stops a vacation faster than a problem with the fresh water system – be it leaks, smells, ...
Pyrotechnic distress flares have been around for decades, while electronic strobe distress flares ...
Most of us don’t give a second thought to our sacrificial anodes – those curious knobs of raw metal ...
In this time of boat show afterglow, many boaters are counting the days until launch. 

Ask Andrew: Electrical Installations – Part 1: Electrical Connections - basics and how-to’s

Electrical InstallationsBy Andrew McDonald

Winter is a great time to look at some of the hidden spaces on your boat – to take stock of what is aboard, areas of improvement and ways to upgrade.

One of the most common jobs that I’m asked to look at are electrical installations and upgrades. Surprisingly, the majority of these types of jobs are to ‘clean up’ the wiring of years past – when electrical standards were more fluid, and jury-rigged upgrades have been added and adapted over multiple owners and contractors.

Read More about Electrical Installations Basics...

 

  

Marine Products

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While the basics of boat hull design hasn’t changed that much over the years, the same cannot be ...
Yamaha targets the Canadian big-water market with its high-torque 425 horsepower V8 XTO outboard, ...
Looking for a great Christmas gift for the Offshore sailor on your list? This being a Marblehead to ...
Sail shape is long gone. They have stained, feels thin and you see broken threads everywhere. Your ...
Stripping the antifouling paint from the bottom of a boat is physically demanding and is one of the ...
The 2019 Ultimate Sailing Calendar highlights the drama and excitement of blue-water sailing, as ...
Weather nerds and boaters of all stripes will be absorbed by Bruce Kemp’s account of the monstrous ...
Canada Rope promises that its new Night Saver Rope will illuminate at night and act as a reference ...
Take a look as a 68-foot yacht docks itself in between two Volvo Ocean 65 sailing yachts at the ...
Industry Firsts Include Direct Injection and Integrated Electric Steering System