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Friday, September 25, 2015

British Columbia by Boat: Day 3 Vancouver

We got up early and headed over to the bus depot. I'd never seen a bus driver do so much paper work for what should be a common trip (the company ran multiple trips per day, in each direction), but the net result was that he ended up running late, and kept apologizing to every ferry worker as he bulldozed his way onto the ferry.
Once in Vancouver, the bus took a long time to deliver us to the bus depot, from whence we took a short walk over to the false creek ferry terminal and were served almost immediately by an aquabus taking us to Granville island.

The aquabus was fun, and a great way to view Vancouver's false creek. When we arrived at Granville Island, Larry Hosken met us at the dock and escorted us over to Cooper Boating. I will now confess that I'd left the paper copy of my sailing license at home, but it turned out not to be an issue: Cooper Boating is the most relaxed charter outfit I'd ever sailed with. Their idea of a warning briefing was a short 20 minute video reminding you that GPS is not reliable compared to using your brains and eyes. Arturo had arrived and joined us just in time for that video.

There was no chart briefing, and there couldn't be, since every person on staff I talked to about sailing up to Desolation Sound responded: "I've never been there!" Arturo, Larry, and I shrugged and then proceeded with moving into the boat and settling in.

The Stray Cat was a 38' Lagoon Catamaran, but it was the strangest layout I'd ever seen. It had a master-suite on the starboard pontoon, but it didn't take up the entire hull, leaving an empty V-berth shaped "cabin" that could only be accessed from a hatch. The saloon had next to no storage, and neither did the cabins, leaving us to dump most provisions on the shelves. On top of that, there was only a single 80 gallon water tank, but it was opaque so you couldn't tell how much water was in it! It was bizarre and strange. To top it off, they had a TV system with a high end sound system. If I had to construct an image of the sailor who owned this boat, I'd say that he was someone who'd run parties on this boat but had never done any extended cruising on it. At least the diesel engines were brand new.

We provisioned the boat and then had dinner. We were promised a full boat briefing the next morning, and hoped that we'd be able to ask some questions about the boat then.

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