September Sucia 2008

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    September Sucia 2008
    Kermie, Mon Aug 11 2008, 08:04PM

    So, the last cruise of the year is upon us and the annual Sucia gathering is the popular choice! Veteran MacGregor owners know the drill so you won’t need to read much more but for the newcomers of the club I will spell out a few details.
    Historically, it was loosely coordinated yet always attracted a large turnout. We always meet at Fossil Bay in the far shallow end where larger boats dare not go. Someone will arrive first and others will simply raft up along side until we are 12 abreast or more. For obvious reasons it is a popular event and always fun, second only to the Rendezvous or Regatta. We can expect the company of some of the previous Mac owners who have since moved to larger boats, I am sure they will come over for a visit.
    Most sailors will launch from Blaine having already passed customs they are set to sail for Sucia on the Saturday morning, August 30/08, a few may arrive Friday night. Those leaving from a Canadian site will have to arrange customs crossing along the way. Point Roberts has a customs dock, there is none at Sucia. The island of Sucia is a state park with minimal facilities, there is a dinghy dock for those who wish to go ashore and explore or use the composting outhouses. There are a few picnic tables, campsites, fire pits and hiking trails as well but do not look for showers or restaurants. All food and cooking utensils must be brought with you.
    When nearing the island of Sucia watch for the reef at the north west corner and then again watch for the next reef at the entrance to Fossil bay on the south west corner and give both a wide berth.
    Sucia is but a two hour cruise from Point Roberts at 3500 rpm (7-9mph) and maybe longer from Blaine but not much longer.
    Gail & I will be arriving Saturday having been at Roche Harbour the previous two days we planned the weekend with Thursday & Friday off so we will already be in the vacinity. Joe & Tracy Arena of SS ‘Katerina’ have tentative plans to buddy boat with us (from Point Roberts), you met them as newcommers at the Rendezvous, anyone else with the Thursday Friday off are welcome to join us. We will be exploring Garisson Bay and the Mosoleum. There is a fine Marina and good anchoring too.
    This is the place to announce your plans and coordinate some buddy boat travel if you so desire. Keep in mind that Blaine is a popular launch spot and with luck you may get an escort by Mystic Rose, a resident Macgregor at Blaine.
    Sucia is three days of fun folks, one of those don’t miss events that happen annually, so get your plans ready, your boat ready and provisions aboard and we’ll see you at Sucia.

    Here is the link to tides:
    http://www.waterlevels.gc.ca/english/Canada.shtml

    Cheers,
    SS ‘Kermie’

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Mystic Rose, Mon Aug 11 2008, 08:47PM

    We haven’t been out much this year, however we will be there on Saturday, in the afternoon. Mystic Rose is now in permanent slip at Squallicum Harbor in Bellingham. Will be sailing out of there through Hales Passage and then straight to Sucia. Hope to catch you all there.
    Take care.

    Gerry and Linda Mitchell
    Mystic Rose

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Windchime, Mon Aug 11 2008, 10:24PM

    Dear Macmembers,
    Many thanks to the committee for getting the ball rolling so soon, and for organizing things in advance! Very much appreciated.
    Unfortunately, we have a long term commitment on this weekend and will not be able to attend but we will be thinking of you all rafted-up having a sundowner.
    Have a great time!

    Darry & Leisa
    Windchime

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Thu Aug 14 2008, 06:10PM

    Help from our veterans, if we sail from English bay. Where must we check in when crossing the line. And where do we stop for food if we cant bring meat and vegetables across.

    If anyone else is thinking of sailing south on the friday of this sucia weekend, Dennis and Debbie and Myself are heading out for the experience, it looks like we will have a good Ebb to float us down the Georgia.

    PS is if you fish while going down is the fish Canadian or Amerian… I know look for the bar cod(e)!

    Steve

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Kermie, Thu Aug 14 2008, 07:37PM

    Steve, Coming from the north, the most convenient stop for customs, supplies and gas is Point Roberts marina. You can walk to the market from there and they have a dedicated customs dock and gas barge. The tide turns from ebb to flood at 11:00am on Friday and 11:42am Saturday off Tsawwassen. Perhaps you may wish to spend Friday evening in the marina and then head for Sucia early Saturday, they have pump-out, showers, washrooms and a restaurant.

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Sun Aug 17 2008, 11:05AM

    My chart forgot to indicate Fossil Bay so here is a link

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Sun Aug 17 2008, 11:08AM

    Sucia info:

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Sun Aug 17 2008, 11:36AM

    Kermie,
    what is your gps heading from point roberts to sucia, I am plotting mine on a chart.

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Sun Aug 17 2008, 03:18PM

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sucia_Island
    http://www.48north.com/may_2003/sucia.htm
    http://www.waterlevels.gc.ca/cgi-bin/tide-shc.cgi
    http://www.waterlevels.gc.ca/cgi-bin/tide-shc.cgi?queryType=showFrameset&zone=10&language=english®ion=1&stnnum=7735
    http://www.waterlevels.gc.ca/cgi-bin/tide-shc.cgi?queryType=showFrameset&zone=10&language=english®ion=1&stnnum=7735

    somehow the links didn’t get posted earlier. So trying again.

    Kermie
    1. fossil bay: so we will be anchoring top of the bay far right near the campground correct?
    2. Clearing customs for the first time, We place the call before entering the harbour Point Roberts customs (360)9465-2314 and proceed to a specific dock at Pt Roberts and wait for the officers.?
    3. Clearing Customs in Canada… Proceed to (?) when entering English Bay, place call 1-800-461-9999.
    4. Approaching Sucia, is it ok to come in btwn Little sucia and fox cove?

    Activities: For the outdoor enthusias there is much hiking to do on the Island trails.
    Much little bays to cruise sail and sneak a peek or take in the scenery. Maybe our american members might bring their rods and snatch up a couple of coho’s for Saturday night dinner. Followed by a marshmellow roast on the beach for fun.

    Interest: for anyone looking at an evening/night sail Thursday nights tides are lite you wont have a full moon, matter of fact the 30th is black (no moon).

    I am planning to sail out of Vancouver early Friday morning to have the ebb work for me, stop over in Pt roberts for customs and supplies, even dinner, maybe an evening sail to sucia or leave early next morning.

    Saturday spent with my Friends (yes the members) and probably leave Sunday noon to sail with the flood, giving me Monday to attend to personal affairs.

    So if anyone wants to join this flotilla let me know.

    I plotted a heading of 126degrees from Pt Roberts, what does the gps say?

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Sun Aug 17 2008, 10:30PM

    Reply from Kermie:

    Steve attached is a document containing a chart of Sucia and fossil bay. I have no idea how to post it on MYCBC site, it is to hostile to work with.You do not contact American or Canadian customs with your vhf radio on 16, you phone them on you cell phone or telephone or you simply pull up to the customs dock and if they are there they will question. If they are not there you phone them on the land phone at the top of the ramp. http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/do-rb/menu-eng.html
    cbsa 1-800-461-9999
    Point Roberts customs (360)9465-2314 You cannot shortcut between little sucia and the main island or you will get grounded. Go around the bottom of the island and enter through the large bay opening but do not cut close because a large reef extends from the cliff at the opening, Give the point on your starboard a wide berth. See chart attached.

    Sucia Island

    [/html]

    [/html]

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Kermie, Mon Aug 18 2008, 07:48AM

    When crossing from Point Roberts or Blaine to Sucia you are crossing a high volume commercial traffic lane that seems to always have some container ship comming or going. They do not stop for you and likely will not see you in the dark so you may end up squashed on their hull like a bug on a windshield if you are not careful. Also in the dark you cannot see those rip tides at both ends of Patos Island and they will toss you around good if you hit them, ditto for the turbulence at the southern tip of Saturna (Boiling Point). The turbulence and rip tides are contingent on the amount of tide flowing. A warning for those who hit a rip tide – the Admiral will throw you in the brig for life if you hit one. On the up side they only require some extra thrust from the throttle to escape from.
    I usually approach Sucia from the nortwestwest side because Fossil Bay is on the west side and it provides plenty of room to go around the reef on the point. The reef does not seem to be on the chart but trust me I have seen it at low tide and it is there, give a wide berth to the southwest point of Fossil Bay. I believe there is another one at the norhtwest point of sucia, you will see a lot of seaweed gathered there.
    That Large bay you see at the southern portion of Sucia is Echo bay and it always fills up with larger power vessels and a few larger sailboats, it will be full on the weekend as will Fossil bay. You can tent camp on Sucia if you so desire, they have sites and firepits along with picnic tables and outhouses, trails too. Expect to see the park rangers boat at the dinghy dock on this busy weekend. Sucia is also popular with Kyackers who cross from Orca to the park.
    For those night time sailing enthusiasts I would highly recommend an AIS System – google it so that you can read and understand it, along with a good chart plotter and radar combination. You should also have a substaintial radar reflector hoisted so that others with radar can see you. Last but not least you should have some experience and seamanship skills under your belt for high commecial traffic areas. How about a basic and intermediate power Squadron course?

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Coastal Drifter, Mon Aug 18 2008, 10:48AM

    Hello all, While we will not be able to attend ( our motor is not happy) Sucia on the long weekend, we were at Sucia in Fossil Bay about 3 weeks ago. There are 16 mooring buoys in the bay, as well as 2 docks . Moorage fees are charged (dock and mooring buoy) $10/night – not sure if that is the buoys only that are $10 or if there is a fee/foot for the docks. If you raft together, you still pay for each boat. We had a state pass for all the state parks we visited so only had to fill in a form for info giving our state pass number. If you want to get 12 boats rafted – it may be a little tight especially with the low tide in there. As well, I believe there are restrictions (listed on the buoy itself) as to the number and size of boats allowed to raft. We were not rafted there but I noticed it on other mooring buoys we were rafted to. There is fresh water on shore – composting toilets that have no smell (the park warden uses the compost to fertilize his garden) and lots of walks around the island. To the S. you see Mt Baker. If you have P. Vassilopoulos’ book – there are some great pics and info on pgs 34 – 37. If you can’t get on one of the docks, you could raft at one of the buoys. The other excellent book to have is Northwest Boat Travel – covers Washington, BC and Alaska. Even has info on those out of the way places. Kermie is quite correct about the reef on the port side (nw) of the bay as you come in. A sailboat had cut it close when we were there and needed vessel assist. Luckily they had no damage. We had no problem as we were coming from Bellingham and entered directly from the south. The bay was beautiful. They do warn that if you get winds from the s. and se. it can be uncomfortable as the bay is shallow. Not sure if there are negative tides that weekend – we had to pull our dagger board up as the low tide was so shallow. If you are reading American tide data be advised that their tides are based on an average while ours are on the lowest tide recorded. That makes quite a difference sometimes. I also remember leaving that we had to be careful to use our depth sounder and stay more in the middle as the large negative tide made it very shallow. The 30 ft and 34 ft power boats we were with had more problems than we did however. Don’t get fooled about the little bay around the island on the right hand side of the bay in the middle (so to speak). Great for a dinghy when the tide is in. Not for a boat. When the tide goes out, that area around the back is visible sand. There are 4 photos of Fossil Bay on the gallery website for you to view from our trip that may give you some additional info. Enjoy – will hope for good weather for you all. Cheers, Elizabeth

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    NautiMoments, Tue Aug 19 2008, 08:45PM

    Both Ken and I have travelled to Sucia many times, Kermie’s point about the reef is something to take note of. I would like to add for those new comers that we have yet to come in contact with commercial traffic on the way there from Point Roberts or Blaine. As Kermie suggested If anyone needs company on the way down maybe one of the members will be available, it is a very nice trip down to Sucia.

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Sun Aug 24 2008, 08:25AM

    Extended Forecast
    Tue
    Aug 26
    Wed
    Aug 27
    Thu
    Aug 28
    Fri
    Aug 29
    Sat
    Aug 30
    Sun
    Aug 31
    Mon
    Sep 1
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    63° | 52°
    Cloudy

    65° | 52°
    M/Cloudy

    67° | 54°
    M/Cloudy

    67° | 52°
    M/Cloudy

    67° | 53°
    Sunny

    65° | 52°
    M/Cloudy

    61° | 53°
    M/Cloudy

    64° | 53°
    Rain

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Kermie, Mon Aug 25 2008, 07:27AM

    Keep your weather eyes open, The meterologists at both Environment Canada site and the WeatherNetwork change their forecasts more often than their underwear. As their forecast gets closer to the actual time it does become more accurate but that leaves us all waiting to see what color underwear the forecasters put on the day before we leave. It is still uncertain weather forecasting.
    As far as Commercial Traffic is concerned Boundary Pass is the main channel for commercial traffic from the Strait of Juanda Fuca into the Strait of Georgia. In the five years I have sailed from Point Roberts I have never been sailing out there ever without having sighted a containership or tug and barge somewhere in the straight within sighting distance from Pt Roberts and have never in all my trips to the San Juans not encountered a commercial ship of some kind sharing the same passageway (Boundary Pass) Fortunately due to care and diligence I have not had the misfortune of coming into contact with them and I hope no one else does, but it is most certain one will encounter them plying the same waterways as yourself and it is your responsibility to exercise due diligence to avoid a collision with them. They are there and they have the right of way, they are bigger than you. Roberts Bank Container port is right around the corner and they both load and unload ships there, those ships have to be comming and going from somewhere and logically it is the Georgia Strait as there is no other waterway unless they drop out of the sky.
    I am emphasising this because I have experienced a few uncomfortable close encounters over the years and am well aware of how inconsiderate some of those commercial ships are, they are often outside the shipping lanes and un-nervingly close to Point Roberts.

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Mystic Rose, Tue Aug 26 2008, 07:51PM

    HI All,

    The last two weeks I have seen four Macs launching from Bellingham Marina. I go past the launch area on the way to my volunteer work. I cannot seem to pass a Mac without saying hi. There have been several folks I have talked to about meeting up at Sucia, seems at least two should be there when we are. We will see. Hope to see a lot of boats there. Save a spot for Mystic Rose.

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Liverpool Lou II, Wed Aug 27 2008, 09:45AM

    Hi

    So far the group starting from English Bay have 3 boats, old trusty Liverpool Lou II (with brand spanking new Tohatsu 50 TLDI ), Saynomore and Miss Sunshine. Anybody sitting on the fence jump in and have fun. We are starting early Friday morning to use currents to our advantage and will clear the customs at Point Roberts (where we will refresh our supplies that cannot be carried over from Canada). From there Mirage will likely join us for easy crossing to Sucia.

    In reflection to previous posts as a skipper of your boat you have to watch for others on the water at all time. It is given, regardless where you are sailing. There is no need to be afraid of commercial traffic. They are big, but you can see them from far and they keep steady course. With minimal if any change of course you will stay out of their way. They are all pros and they know what are they doing. It is easy to deal with them. Just use common sense, it is easier for you to steer away from them than it is for them to steer away from you. I agree with Terry that you can almost always see a container ship or towing barge but they are usually miles away from you and that is it. We are talking about area of hundreds of square miles and there is plenty of space for anybody, no need for panic. It is not Port Man Bridge at rush hour. And Terry please… I know that statement…”They do not stop for you and likely will not see you in the dark so you may end up squashed on their hull like a bug on a windshield if you are not careful”… will be viewed as an insult by professional pilots and captains in commercial shipping. You made them look evil and careless, I know few of them, very nice guys. They are also human beings with families and kids and they take their job and responsibility very, very, seriously. They do watch for other traffic including recreational boats and the last thing they look for is to scrape some poor boater off their hull. And if you are in the dark all you need to do is to turn on your navigation lights (I hope you are doing it, regardless of the traffic) and than they will see you.

    All of these that are a bit nervous about their first crossing should just hook up with one of the groups and follow some of us that been there and done that in calm and safely manner and with joy of our crews.

    Zoran

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    saynomore, Wed Aug 27 2008, 07:03PM

    Extended Forecast
    Fri
    Aug 29
    Sat
    Aug 30
    Sun
    Aug 31
    Mon
    Sep 1
    Tue
    Sep 2
    Wed
    Sep 3
    Thu
    Sep 4
    Fri
    Sep 5

    69° | 54°
    Showers

    65° | 51°
    M/Sunny

    67° | 52°
    M/Cloudy

    67° | 53°
    P/Sunny

    67° | 54°
    Cloudy

    61° | 49°
    Rain

    64° | 49°
    M/Cloudy

    63° | 53°
    Rain
    Long Term Forecast

    Friday
    August 29 Saturday
    August 30 Sunday
    August 31 Monday
    Sep 1 Tuesday
    Sep 2 Wednesday
    Sep 3
    Light rain Variable cloudiness Cloudy periods Cloudy periods Light rain Cloudy with showers
    Daytime Condition
    Light rain

    Variable cloudiness

    Cloudy periods

    Cloudy periods

    Light rain

    Cloudy with showers
    P.O.P. 80% 20% 10% 10% 70% 90%
    High 17°C 17°C 19°C 18°C 17°C 17°C
    Low 15°C 10°C 9°C 10°C 10°C 10°C
    Wind S 10 km/h W 5 km/h NW 5 km/h SE 5 km/h N 5 km/h SW 10 km/

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Kermie, Thu Aug 28 2008, 11:53AM

    Gotta love ya Zoran, your response to my perceived fear mongering is very humerous and I especially enjoyed laughing when you exclaimed the last thing the big ship captain wants is to scrape some poor boater off their hull. My bug on a windshield remark was meant as tongue in cheek humor not serious. I agree there are many square miles of space and plenty of room but bear in mind they travel at 20-30 knots and cannot stop as fast as we can, their stopping range far exceeds ours. I go out there most every weekend during the summer and I swear those ships hide around the bottom of Saturna just waiting for me to come out so they can come charging at me. If I could have a winning lottery ticket for every time it happens I would be rich today. I am never sure which side of the strait they are going to come up so I always play guessing games with them and don’t always guess right but as you say there is plenty of room for avoidance, I just don’t like sharing with them and don’t like having to tack back 180 degrees to avoid them. They have no business being too close to Pt Roberts. It is not always them in the wrong either as I daysail all the way over to Mayne Island and back so I regularly cross their shipping lane. And it never fails that I have to encounter them, ditto for the ferries in Active pass I never make it through there without sharing with a ferry. Yes common sense and care prevailing will avoid any collision but I really don’t like the wash those big ships leave and how I get bounced around in the waves afterwards. My next electronics upgrade will include an AIS system so that I can know in advance what their course bearing is and more readily stay out of the way.
    Love the Port Mann Bridge in rush hour comment too, great humor and good for the soul.
    I will make one last comment though:
    “A cavalier attitude can only earn you a fatality statistic label”
    It may not be as congested out there as I seem to be making it perceived to be (though that is not my intention) but a all boaters are responsible to be always on the lookout. You can see them coming miles away but they arrive upon you amazingly fast, 20-30 knots folks.

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Suenos, Thu Aug 28 2008, 10:11PM

    Greetings from Impulse. We will be leaving either Friday or Saturday from Anacortes Wa. Hoping to find you – we don’t have charts for this area. We do however have a road of the San Juans and a watchband compass. We overheard some sailors talking about tides and currents – is this something we should be worried about. Hope to see you all at Sucia.

    Cheryle, Doug, and Linda

    Re: September Sucia 2008
    Suenos, Thu Aug 28 2008, 10:11PM

    Greetings from Impulse. We will be leaving either Friday or Saturday from Anacortes Wa. Hoping to find you – we don’t have charts for this area. We do however have a road of the San Juans and a watchband compass. We overheard some sailors talking about tides and currents – is this something we should be worried about. Hope to see you all at Sucia.

    Cheryle, Doug, and Linda

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