One day in the life of OMOO: While living in Vancouver, our lovely vessel took us on a trip to Indian Arm. This route is extremely interesting and extremely busy as it takes us through Vancouver Harbor, a very large working harbor full of barges, tugboats, freighters, pleasure boats and bridges.
After all the summers we’ve spent in Vancouver, SS and Hershey have gotten used to some favorite anchorages to head to after a busy work week. We thought we planned to go back to Gambier Island when we drifted closer and closer to Stanley Park and kept heading around to Lion’s Gate Bridge. SS says, “hey, let’s go to Indian Arm, we haven’t been there for a long time.” Checking for slack tide under Second Narrows Bridge it was perfect for 1 hours’ from then. Great timing!! We’ve always sailed whichever way the wind blows.
The city is a totally different view from the water, and just as spectacular as from land or air. The seawall around Stanley Park is teaming with cyclists and the cruise ships are at dock at Canada Place.
Further along the harbor the working boats are in action. There’s a freighter being loaded, the tugboats are moving barges around and there’s alot of action on VHF channel 11. Unfortunately we weren’t tuned in, thinking we would continue to monitor channel 16. OOPS, big wake up call when we needed to call a tug we were overtaking who didn’t see us and cut us off at the pass. Little known fact, the Skipper struggles with a bit of road rage so SS had to pull back the throttle to slow things down, knowing we weren’t gonna win that one!!
OKAY, on to Second Narrows Bridge, which is a railway bridge which has to be lifted so we can fit our 60′ mast underneath. SS called the bridge operator to ask for him for a lift which he immediately obliged to and away we went. Things quickly change from commercial traffic to pleasure traffic and we’re swarmed by sea-doos. WHAT A RACKET!!
We make our way past crab-pots, kayakers, more see-doos, and poorly marked crab pots with one being attached to a floating cushion. Seriously??? We only know that cause we tried to retrieve a free cushion! UGH, a cushion on a line to a crab trip… WHATEVER, that will learn us.
When we round the jut-out of Belcarra Park we are delighted to see the anchorage free of other boats and set in at 180 feet of chain for a beautiful sunset and a quiet night at anchor… just what the Doctor, or Mother Nature ordered.
We’re back out the next day and were ordered by the Vancouver Traffic Control to wait out a barge being towed under Second Narrows Bridge. While puttsing around and trying to have a look at a refinery, we were again directed to stay out of the way of the working tugs towing barges. These guys are busy looking after business!!
Vancouver Harbor Control did request that we pass it on to all our boating friends that it is the law to halt all transit under Second Narrows Bridge until cleared for commercial traffic. Being a 42′ SV versus a 100′ barge being towed by a monster tug, that made alot of sense to us…. we promised to pass that along.
Have a look at the beautiful harbor and inlet of Indian Arm.