Sugarloaf Marina - Contemporary buildings and modern facilitiesNorm F. Myshok

After being without a boat for almost a decade, I decided it was time to own one again. My wife and I recently moved from the city to a slower, less-congested lifestyle on Niagara’s south coast. We were quite taken by the quiet streets, the sound of the breeze blowing through the trees and the beautiful beaches. 

Before we bought our boat, we wanted to research our options for slipping and storing in the area. We spent some time at several different marinas in order to get a feel for the dock life. We were looking for a place that could store our boat on site, offered fuel and pumpout services and was still located near to everyday conveniences.

Our choice became clear very quickly. Sugarloaf Marina in Port Colborne is truly one of the nicest marinas I have ever visited and is apparently one of Ontario’s five largest marinas. Hosting over 700 slips with covered picnic areas and electric BBQs right on the docks, it also offers two fish-cleaning stations, WIFI, swipe card security dock and washroom access, and onsite laundry facilities. (Even the wakeboard zipline run by Boarder Pass Niagara had us hooked!) The HH Knoll Lakeview Park, located next door, offers a modern playground and splash pad for the kids. It also has an outdoor stage for open-air concerts and events. Roselawn Centre is just a short walk away and home to world-class theatre. We can walk downtown in minutes for groceries, great restaurants and quaint boutiques.

Port Colborne is also steeped in marine heritage and is home to the world-famous Marine Heritage Canal Days Festival. This draws 300,000+ visitors during the four-day Civic weekend event. (portcolborne.ca/page/canal_days).

Sugarloaf Marina is centrally located so we can cruise across Lake Erie in an afternoon, dock in Dunkirk (USA) to enjoy dinner, and/or go further afield to Pennsylvania and Ohio, both within a short two-day sail. Or we can stay north of the border and explore Port Dover, Pelee Island and Erieau. Being situated at the mouth of the Welland Canal allows us to take the eight locks down to Lake Ontario opening up even more cruising destinations.

sugarloaf marina boasts over 700 slipsWhen the season ends, Sugarloaf provides its boaters the largest travel lift (30-tonne) at the eastern (Canadian) end of Lake Erie. They also operate a 15-ton hydraulic trailer and telehandler for moving equipment, cradles and stepping masts.

Sugarloaf Marina uses a workplace passport system so only licensed, certified and insured companies can apply to work on boats, either on the docks or in the storage yard. Avid DIYers can work on their own boats as long as they follow all environmental policies and procedures. Because “there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats”.

I can’t say enough about the staff, students, and fellow boaters at Sugarloaf Marina. Everyone is friendly and the facilities are very well kept; the location and amenities certainly speak for themselves. I am proud to have chosen it as my home-based marina.

portcolborne.ca/page/marina

Photos:

Photo 1 - The contemporary buildings and modern facilities add to the enjoyment at Sugarloaf Marina.

Photo 2 - Sugarloaf Marina is one of Ontario’s five largest with over 700 slips and features like covered picnic areas, electric BBQ’s, fish cleaning stations, Wifi, swipe card security and more.

 

An Abacos Adventure

Great Guana CayBy Mark Stevens; Photos by Sharon Matthew-Stevens

It’s a perfect Sunday morning jaunt.

We’re gliding through green-blue waters, colours so vivid and bright they hurt your eyes. We’re set for a close reach out of a harbour guarded by a necklace of tiny emerald islands decorated by palms that dance in fifteen knots of wind.

Our boat, “Tropical Escape II” (perfect name for both the boat and our adventure), is a 44-foot Robertson and Caine catamaran, chartered from Sunsail’s Marsh Harbour base on Bahamas’ Great Abaco Island.

Read More about An Abacos Adventure...

 

Lifestyle

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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.

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DIY & How to

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Ask Andrew – How to hire a boat repair contractor

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A recent conversation with a fellow contractor got me thinking: With all of the information out there, including: Websites showing repairs, YouTube tutorials, Instagram pages and snapchat streams – let alone books, magazines, service manuals, and years of practical experience – how does a boat owner know which method(s) are ‘right’, who to trust, and who to hire to do the job? In short: How do you find and select a contractor?

Unfortunately, most people are forced to hire a contractor due to a circumstance where something has broken or failed, or the task...

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Marine Products

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