Anchorages in BC and Canada are more beautiful than ever in the winter. The water is much clearer and we can see more life in the water from the boat. The anchorages are deserted and so we feel like intrepid explorers even walking in what are normally overrun parks. There is more sailing wind in the winter, sometimes too much. Unfortunately it is also cold and wet.
Green clear water (left) and you can see the bottom (right):
One thing we've learned about ourselves, after doing a bit of winter sailing, is that it is easy to avoid feeling cooped up in bad weather if we plan our anchorages carefully.
Here is the SV Estrellita 5.10b list of important qualities for a winter anchorage:
- Scenic views from cockpit. If the weather really sucks and it is too gross to be in the dinghy, we can still sit bundled up in our cockpit in our full enclosure, sipping cocoa or mulled wine and enjoying the view with a book.
We love you Iverson Dodgers full enclosure – the wine and camembert don’t hurt either:
- Easy access to shore. Shore must be close to where we are anchored (no long dinghy rides in strong wind and rain) and we must be able to get to shore without having to carry the dinghy across a long muddy slog. Dinghy docks are great as are sandy beaches.
- Walking of some sort. Whether it be a hiking path, a beach, or the streets of a new town, we need somewhere to walk because we aren't going out kayaking in the rain. We don't have the gear (or the kayak) for that.
Hiking on Wallace Island:
- Finally, we like to mix in stays at docks in towns more often during the winter than in the summer. Warm coffee shops, public libraries with DVDs and internet, and pubs are even more fun after a long and usually isolated stint in the winter weather.