Oct 12, 2017

VeteransSince Halifax was founded in 1749 by Edward Cornwallis and the British Garrison the strategic importance of Halifax Harbour and Bedford Basin has played a significant role in the development of Halifax. From a military perspective the harbour and the basin has been a gathering point for warships since the battle for Louisbourg during the 7 Years War in the 1750s. At that time British frigates gathered in the basin in preparation for an assault of the French fortress.

During World War II the Basin was used as an assembly point by the allied navies for 300 convoys of supplies and troops in a gallant effort to cross the German submarine infested North Atlantic Ocean. In the early years of the war, the convoys were escorted by the Corvette class ships. To truly get a feel of what it was like to live and work aboard these ships, one can visit Canada’s floating museum HMCS Sackville, at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic.

 

Convoy Cup

The Convoy Cup this year was held September 8-10 and is the brainchild of long time DYC member and retired Norwegian Consul to Nova Scotia, Steinar Engeset. The Convoy Cup commemorates thousands of sailors who participated in the dangerous, and sometimes deadly, missions to supply the allied forces in Europe with food, ammunition, and troops. Halifax was the epicenter for hundreds of naval vessels and supply ships that formed the convoys to transport these commodities across the Atlantic Ocean. Can you imagine what D-Day would have been like without the assistance of the convoys? Would it have even been staged?

HMCS SackvilleSadly, enough younger generations cannot fully appreciate the enormity of the challenges faced by the seamen of the day. By today’s standards the Corvette Class is a small fragile vessel. The crews were made up of young (teenage) volunteers who had no idea if they’d ever see Canada again. This regatta is a tool to help educate those who are too young to fully appreciate the sacrifices our veterans made. The few surviving veterans of this brutal era can proudly stand on HMCS Sackville to take the salute from participating DYC vessels. Each representing a Norwegian ship lost at sea. The start of the ocean race is also within view of HMCS Sackville and was designed to re-enact a convoy departing Halifax Harbour.



For those who cannot enter the ocean race but still want to be involved in this prestigious event, a racing series takes place in the Bedford Basin. The actual staging area of the convoys. The importance of this regatta to DYC members was best summed up by the actions of Don Jessome aboard Henry Edward. For the basin portion of racing there weren’t enough boats to properly form a spinnaker fleet. Without EVER having previously flown a spinnaker Don jumped from the White Sail fleet to the Spinnaker fleet knowing that all his competitors would do a “horizon job” on him just so there would be more medals for the veterans to hand out during the closing ceremonies. Light air plagued the event this year but the dedicated sailors persevered to complete the regatta.

Memorial

With a 1500 start the first ocean race crossed the finish line at 2330 and the last competitor finished the following morning at 0830. Wind in the basin was almost non-existent as the average speed was 0.8 knots on a course that is normally completed in 15 minutes took 3.5 hours to complete. BRAVO ZULU to all racing crews and volunteers.

Convoy Cup 2The closing ceremonies were attended by competitors, volunteers, Mayor Mike Savage, MLA Susan LeBlanc, Lt. Governor Arthur J. LeBlanc and of course the stars of the show, the veterans. An emotional speech was delivered by Chairman Engeset who thanked the veterans in attendance for their courage and determination.

“Without you, people in my home country would be speaking a different language and have nothing. We owe it all to you. Thank-you, Thank-you, Thank-you.” With that the veterans handed out medals to the top competitors of the fleets but, everyone is a winner at Convoy Cup.

-Rob Dunbar
Photos Convoy Cup 1,2,3, HMCS Sackville, and memorial courtesy of Bridgett Hargraft

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leasing a YachtBy Andy Adams

When I first saw the display at the Toronto International Boat Show saying that you could lease a new yacht, it stopped me dead in my tracks. While I had never considered leasing boats, we are certainly seeing growth in boat rental organizations, so leasing didn’t seem out of line. In fact, I wondered why it had taken this long to see boat leasing come to the market.

However, I have a reasonable understanding of how leasing works compared to financing a purchase and I wondered how the numbers could work for something like a yacht. The sign was in front of a 60 foot Princess Express Cruiser – about $3,000,000 

Read more about Leasing a Yacht............

 

  

Boat Reviews

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J99By Katherine Stone

All set to pull out the Code 0 before dousing the jib.

It was a very cold and wet beginning to the summer and we never thought it would arrive in Southern Ontario. Doing a 100 miler race on Lake Ontario (billed as the COOLEST race on the lake) with my 8 layers of thermal clothing, woolen ski toque and ski mittens, along with a neck warmer kept me on the edge all night, just out of frostbite reach. I shouldn’t have complained, as we also had wind!

July and August arrived, and it has certainly warmed up, in fact, its too warm, AND we don’t have wind. We are now counting 5 Wednesday nights in a row without wind to race. 

Read more about the J99 Offshore Shorthand Speeder.....................

 

Wellcraft 242 FishermanBy Andy Adams

Boat buyers are gravitating to the latest centre console boats for a wide range of reasons but for the Wellcraft 242 Fisherman, you can sum it up by saying it’s about features, style and value.

This great-looking boat is just as capable on a family picnic cruise as it is doing serious blue water fishing. A wide range of options let the buyer tailor the boat for their specific interests, but it’s all there to choose from. Our test boat was well-equipped for that comfortable cruise with easy access via the swim platform and through the transom gate into the cockpit.

Read More about the Wellcraft 242 Fisherman..................

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Port Severn's Lock 45Blake Marchand


As the final link between Lake Ontario and Georgian Bay, Port Severn’s Lock 45 is the gateway to the beautiful Trent-Severn Waterway. The first and smallest lock to be constructed on the Severn portion, Lock 45 is entrenched in Canadian History and is worth the trip in itself. However, it is the waterway and its idyllic surroundings that will keep you coming back.

The canal connects Lake Ontario and Lake Huron with an eastern terminus in Trenton and a western terminus in Port Severn. Its amazing natural waterways include the Trent River, Otonabee River, The Kawartha Lakes, Lake Simcoe, Lake Couchiching and Severn River.

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