By Katherine Stone

Beaconsfield Yacht Club 7Sail and power boats tucked safely in their berths for the night.

Two-hundred-year-old homes are what ghost stories are made of, and Beaconsfield Yacht Club (BYC) has its fair share of both. Although no one has seen any apparitions, a former club restaurant manager swore she could feel a presence whenever she went down to the cellar to get supplies.

Shift back to the beginnings of an area known as Beaurepaire. The first land concession on Lake Saint Louis at Pointe Beaurepaire was obtained from the Sulpicians by Jean Guénet in 1678. Shortly thereafter, 46 homes were constructed along Lakeshore Road.An old deed, dated September 1700, called the area ‘Pointe Anaouy’- an aboriginal name meaning ‘Whole Point.’Guénet was a controller of the ‘King’s Realm’ and the tax collector for the Seigneurs of the Island of Montreal. Over the next 200 years, that plot of land changed hands many times over. The English moved in and slowly forgot the French name, referring to the area as ‘Thompson’s Point.’ However, in due time,James Thompson decided that the area should revert to its original name, and forever it remained Beaurepaire.

The stately old clubhouse adorns the grounds.Beaconsfield 9

In 1810, the cornerstone was laid for a beautiful stone house, referred to as the Grove building (Le Bocage), at 26 Lakeshore Road, built by Paul Valois. Stone from local quarries was brought in to build the 38-inch thick walls with hand-hewn timbers at three-foot centres to provide support for the floors.From the club archives, it is revealed that Valois then built the first waterfront clubhouse and dock in 1812 (where the present docks of BYC are located). Valois raised the first club burgee - a flag with a royal blue background and a gold crown at the centre - while his guests enjoyed champagne to mark the first regatta.

Beaconsfield 2

 

A break in the action at the bar.

In 1853, the Grand Trunk Railway put in its first single track line and later the Canadian Pacific Railway, allowing residents escape from the heat and humidity of Montreal to enjoy the countryside and life along the lake. The town of Beaconsfield was incorporated in 1910 (and later in 1966 as a city). The progressive town councilors passed a by-law in 1914 that would provide electric light services to their citizens. This was quite groundbreaking, as Buffalo, NY, was the first American city to have widespread electric lights only at the turn of the 20th century.

Several owners later, Francis Upton acquired the property in 1891, adding buildings and turning it into a fashionable resort and boating club for Montreal’s elite called ‘The Grove Pointe Inn.’ Owners changed, the depression arrived, and during the Second World War, the Ration Administration, Civil Defense, Red Cross, and First Aid operated out of The Grove. Sold in 1966 to the City of Beaconsfield, it was used as a hotel during Expo 67 and then leased tothe newly formed Beaconsfield Yacht Club.

The clubhouse offers a wonderful quiet place for sailing stories over a scotch.Beaconsfield 3

Located only 20km from downtown Montreal (celebrating its 375th birthday this year), at the east end of Beaconsfield on Montreal’s west island, the Beaconsfield Yacht Club overlooks much of Lake Saint Louis where there is deep, safe water at the harbour mouth. There are facilities for 240 members, storage for 80+ small boats on shore, and a harbourthat can accommodate 160 boats up to 36 feet with finger docks for every boat. It has a ‘Three Anchor’ rating fromL’Association Maritime du Québec. The facilities include the services of a fully licensed bar and restaurant (full-time throughout the summer and part-time during the winter), lawns, picnic areas, BBQ facilities, showers, washrooms, workshop, electric hoist, sheerleg, yacht crane, gas dock,and pump-out facilities. If you are feeling a bit nervous about your docking skills, professional assistance on the docks is at your fingertips. It’s no wonder they are at the top of their game with a beautiful 200-year-old clubhouse to welcome members!

Their sailing school squadron offers Sail Canada programs including Wet Feet, CANSail levels 1-4, and a race team for youngsters aged 8-17. Adult lessons are also highly popular and are offered two nights a week with Learn to Sail, Learn to Cruise,and the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron’s Power and Sailing boating courses. Quoted by many as an inexpensive, wonderful way to learn how to sail, it is a most wonderful opportunity to make lifelong friendships and develop life skills for the future - all while having fun!

Beaconsfield 4Floating docks provide an adjustment from the high water in Quebec this season.

And fun they have with all kinds of social events to fill their calendar offered for every participation level.A common event theme is food, with the Lobster Boil, Chilly Bowl, and Turkey Bowl races. If you aren’t a foodie, they also offer the Commodore’s Bowl, Sainte-Jean Cup, Two Generation race, and Club Championship events. Not a boater? You can get involved with the Sand Bar Party or Yoga. On Tuesday and Thursday evenings you will find almost every type of sailboat and all types of sailors, from hard-core to beginners, out enjoying the Good Neighbour Series (GNS) on the lake. These races are extremely popular and are run in collaboration with two neighbouring clubs. They have also been at the forefront of encouraging wanna-be sailors by offering an Associate Membership, which allows non-boat owners the use of club sailing school boats when not in use for teaching. Also known for their involvement in the boating community,they have hosted regattassuch as the Laser Masters, Quebec Shark championships, and this year, the 2017 J/24 Canadian Championships. They certainly stand by the Earl of Beaconsfield’s motto,‘FORTI NIHIL DIFFICILE,’ meaning ‘Nothing is difficult to the Brave.’

Members enjoy a Musical Chair event.Beaconsfield 5

The people who live in this semi-rural community of summer cottages are distinguished by their lifestyle of united voluntary participation. Take for instance a story recounted by Brad Wood, a member of BYC since 2011. After a particularly violent squall had blown through the area, club manager David Speak received a phone call at home from one of the club’s student bosuns, saying that a boat had broken loose from its mooring and drifted ashore in a most unusual state. David immediately went to the club to investigate and upon arrival, discovered that the boat had its companion way hatch open, the mainsail wrapped on the boom in a disorganized manner, and the jib still set with some tears.

Beaconsfield 1Had the occupants gone aground and swam to shore? This was not likely as it was June and the water was still cold. Scanning the shoreline he thought he could hear a very faint whistling coming from the lake. With the help of a bosun, he immediately launched one of the club boats and headed out onto the lake. They stopped the motor several times to be able to clearly hear the whistling, as it was dusk and nothing was clearly visible. They finally found a man and woman floating about two-thirds of the way across the lake,having been in the cold water for more than an hour.

 

Sharks on the starting line at BYC.Beaconsfield 8

David radioed ahead for an ambulance, recovered the couple from the water, and ferried them to the club where they were warmed up in showers until the medics arrived. The couple were new members to BYC and in fact, it was the first time sailing for the woman. When the bosunhad taken them out to their boat, he pointed out that some nasty weather was supposed to be coming and that they should keep an eye on any approaching fronts. When the squall hit, it knocked their boat over and the woman panicked and jumped overboard without a PFD. The man quickly grabbed two PFDs and also jumped overboard. Given what could have been the outcome, it was a very happy ending thanks to great teamwork from the yacht club.

As they celebrate the 207th anniversary of their beloved clubhouse during the summer of 2017, many members recount that being at BYC was the highlight of their youth. Current Club Manager, David Speak, learned to sail at BYC as an adolescent in the 1970s and is the son of a past Club Treasurer. Members Carolyn and Matt Koch, whose parents were both members of BYC, met at the club in the late 1980s, married, and now their daughter, Katie,works at the club restaurant. The Beaconsfield Yacht Club is truly a family affair that often attracts multi-generational members.

Beaconsfield Yacht Club; 26 Lakeshore Road; Beaconsfield , Quebec H9W 4H3
Tel: (514) 695 -127273o 50' 25" W - 45o 25' 55" N
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. site: Yacht Club de Beaconsfield

Destinations

  • Prev
Located about half way between Shediac and the Miramichi on New Brunswick’s Acadian Coast, the town ...
Suddenly the once forsaken city of Hamilton, Ontario is booming for at least two good reasons.
The Salty Dawg Sailing Association (SDSA) invites all sailors to join a cruising rally from the ...
Long popular with New England and St. John area boaters, Passamaquoddy Bay is too often overlooked ...
We did breakfast yesterday in the Greek port of Piraeus, just outside Athens:strong coffee, crisp ...
After much speculation Prince Harry finally popped the question to American actress and longtime ...
Last January we ran a short piece on the motor boat A Great Story which had been restored by the ...
The Moorings has just announced the launch of its newest Caribbean destination, Antigua. 
Toronto sailor and former RCYC coach/sailing instructor Ryan May is now a US coast guard captain ...
Just before the weekly party at Shirley HeightsSunsail staffer Chris Donahue conducts our chart ...

How to be as Polite as a Canadian at Gulf Island Marine Park Anchorages

Gulf Island Marine ParkStory and photos by Catherine Dook

One summer I sold ice cream and knick-knacks at Montague Harbour Marina. I was standing behind the counter one day, when the phone rang. “There’s a boat at anchor in the middle of the bay that’s been playing loud music for three hours,” complained an irate-sounding male voice. “Can you make them stop?”

“Um, no,” I replied. “The marina has no jurisdiction over the anchorage. Besides, my only weapon is a till.” The man hung up on me.

Now when you think about it, you can understand why the poor fellow was annoyed.

Read more about the Gulf Island Marine Park.....

 

 

Canadian Yachting Digital April 2018

Boat Reviews

  • Prev
Commodore’s Boats is a full service shipyard with over 50 years of generational history and ...
Cruisers Yachts debuts the all-new 42 Cantius. The sporty, luxury cruiser will make its first ...
Once again, the designers at Jeanneau have outdone themselves with the innovative new Leader 10.5 ...
The introduction of X-Yachts’Xc range in 2008 has proven itself to be something of a game changer ...
Hull #1 ZINNIA, the all-new, twin outboard MJM 35z left Boston BoatWorks on July 5 for Newport and ...
Following a 10-year hiatus, Richmond, BC-based Crescent Custom Yachts is once again launching ...
According to the folks at Fraser Yacht Sales, you couldn't ask for more - the new Azimut Atlantis ...
During those cold, cold, sunless, dreary months of January and February, I want to remember the fun ...
The Rossiter 23 Classic Day Boatis both a logical extension of the Canadian-built Rossiter line and ...
It's rare for Canadian Yachting magazine to report on the same boat twice, but that is how ...

 

Cruisers Yachts Cantius 42

Cruisers Yachts Cantius 42By John Armstrong and Andy Adams 

The latest new model from Cruisers Yacht sis the Cantius 42 and this yacht made its debut in the fall of 2017, at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. We had the pleasure of going all through this newest Cantius there and clearly, the Cruisers Yachts people continue to refine and expand on all the features that have made the Cantius line such a success.

The new 42 continues the Cantius family resemblance with handsome and distinctive lines including a big section of hull side glazing port and starboard that makes the full-beam mid-ship master stateroom feel very bright and open.

Read more about the Cruisers Yachts Cantius 42...

 

 

DIY & How to

  • Prev
In this time of boat show afterglow, many boaters are counting the days until launch. 
Water has a funny way of making its way into a boat: through through-hulls, stuffing boxes, leaks, ...
 Since the initial article of this column we have identified a wide range of apps and ...
Since the initial article of this series we have looked at the iPad and its use as a marine ...
The moment we all dread. It’s a warm sunny day and you’re out for a cruise. Suddenly ...
For most of us – this is the time to make the most of the boating season – launch and ...
Question: Is it possible to mount, protect and charge your iPad during marine navigation. ...
  Is iNavX the superlative marine navigation app?    
Question: Can I buy generic automotive parts or products for my boat, or should they specify ...

Marine Products

  • Prev
We have all had the experience of heading down below on a nice boat only to encounter an unpleasant ...
Last year when this column launched a good deal of time was spent understanding global satellite ...
This article was my first about 10 years ago, and it found it's way to an outdoor editor/writer ...
For a gloomy February we look not only at how an app that works within your phone can be of benefit ...
ZCare Marine, offers effective, eco-safe products to help keep your boat clean. They have products ...
Monaro Marine Ltd. of Richmond, BC, designs and builds its own unique brand of semi-custom 21' to ...
With Garmin it is now possible to use both devices without independently operating two devices with ...
When the Halifax Boat Show opens on February 8th there will be an excellent selection of pontoon ...
The 627 is the largest outboard in world. New cylinder heads and camshaft, an uprated ...
Sirius Signal held a product information session for interested parties prior to demonstrating ...