{Stus-List} Roche Harbour, San Juans. New Canadian chart 3313

David Blair dblairinc at telus.net
Thu Jun 25 01:03:27 EDT 2009


People sail through Spieden every day and have done it umpteen times myself. If there is a big tide change going on then it can certainly be turbulent and in the absence of a good wind it would be a motor for a mile approaching Spieden from the east, and another mile or two into the turn for Roche which is well marked (what looks like a shortcut where Roche docks are visible is pretty shallow at most tides, however going past the small island to port and taking the main route in is easy). Mosquito pass would be tougher to sail through but only because of a rather windy and narrow but well marked channel through from Haro Strait to Roche - so plan on motoring that one.  Someone is being ultra cautious with the directions you are quoting. 
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Patrick H. Wesley 
  To: cnc-list at cnc-list.com 
  Sent: Wednesday, June 24, 2009 9:42 AM
  Subject: {Stus-List} Roche Harbour, San Juans. New Canadian chart 3313


  I plan to sail to Roche Harbor and the most direct route from Tsehum Harbour would bring me in from the North. I have just bought the updated Canadian Gulf Islands chart book 3313 and noticed that in the Supplemental Information opposite page 6 it says "In Spieden Channel, heavy tide rips and eddies result from flood currents flowing East from Haro Strait and West from San Juan Channel. This channel is not recommended for sailing craft." The alternative entrance is via Mosquito Pass and the SI says "Strong currents flood North and ebb South through Mosquito Pass. Local knowledge recommended."

   

  So what is a poor sailor to do? Is this the authorities being very conservative to avoid lawsuits? I assume that sailboats go in and out of Roche Harbor all the time. Perhaps you should not sail through Spieden Channel but have no trouble entering Roche because it is at the western end of the Channel, or in fact not really in the Channel at all?

   

  Appreciate any comments from those who know the area.

   

  By the way, something to look out for: the bookseller who sold me the chart book (and who seems knowledgeable about them) said that this chart was re-issued in January but has had to be recalled twice since then because of errors. My copy is marked January 2, 2009 so they have not indicated the updating. Even the version I got is marked as having an insignificant typo in some French wording in one place and the seller hopes that all errors have been caught.

   

   

  Patrick Wesley

  s/v "The Boat" C & C 24

  Westport Marina, Sidney BC

   

   



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