sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Video Gallery Photo Gallery

 

Sail-World.com : Looking Ahead—Adventure Racing in the Pacific Northwest

Looking Ahead—Adventure Racing in the Pacific Northwest

'Searching for the breeze while racing to Telegraph Cove in the 2007 Van Isle 360'    David Schmidt    Click Here to view large photo

The spring is an exciting time to be a Pacific Northwest sailor. Unlike most of the rest of the country, our fleet races all winter, so come spring and fair weather, racing skills are sharp and confidence levels are high.

By July, the racing gear has been stripped and the cruising gear re-deployed, but, in the meantime, two of the most important races—the Swiftsure International Yacht Race and the TELUS Van Isle 360—offer adventure and great racing for those souls hearty enough stare down a bit of rain and cold graveyard watches.

The Swiftsure International Yacht Race, organized by the Royal Victoria Yacht Club, starts on May 28 and offers eight different courses, ranging from 17.8 to 138.7 miles, for boats of all sizes.

Racing starts just off of Victoria, B.C., and takes all sailors past Race Rocks, an eerie place marked with roiling currents that have spelled doom for countless seamen, and west down the Straight of Juan de Fuca (the start of last year’s Swiftsure was so unpleasant that it was affectionately re-dubbed the Straights of Wanna Pucka, in honor of the suffering souls aboard).

To the south is the Olympic Peninsula and the mighty Olympic Mountains, and to the north are the steep, lush foothills of Vancouver Island. Sweeping currents, frequent wind holes, insider knowledge and a role of the dice make tactics an adventure every year.

The TELUS Van Isle 360—held every other year—is one of the coolest sailboat races anywhere. As its name implies, the race circumnavigates Vancouver Island, beginning on June 4 and finishing on June 19. The course’s 537 miles are broken up into ten different stages that get progressively sportier as the fleets sails counterclockwise around the island, starting and ending in Nanaimo. In between, the fleet enjoys the relative protection of British Columbia before negotiating the Nahwitti Bar (another infamous ship graveyard) and the northwest corner of the island.

Things historically get bumpiest by the Brooks Peninsula, perhaps one third of the way down the island’s west coast, but, given the proximity to mountains and the exposure to the open Pacific, every leg has the potential for adventure.

Evenings are spent socializing with friends in sleepy fishing towns, savoring the massive trees, the tremendous tides (up to 16 knots), the rugged beaches and the wilderness-sailing nature of this amazing event. If racing alongside Orcas while watching bald eagles fish and the occasional grizzly bear stalking a lonesome, windswept beach is your idea of fun, the Van Isle 360 is impossible to beat.

As for the rest of the summer, our cruising isn’t so bad…it’s just that the iron jenny isn’t nearly as fun as to fly a full spinnaker down the Vancouver Island’s west coast…especially if it isn’t raining.




by David Schmidt

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=83527

1:06 AM Mon 16 May 2011 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.


News - USA and the World











America's Cup Book Review: Winging It - Oracle Team USA's comeback *Feature by Richard Gladwell Sail-World.com/nz,




Rolex China Sea Race 2014 - nip and tuck for IRC honours by RHKYC and Guy Nowell, Sail-World Asia, Hong Kong


























HUD Vision: An interview with Afterguard Marine’s Alex Moret *Feature by David Schmidt, Sail-World USA Editor, Seattle














America's Cup: Expected de Ridder penalty should be reduced *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz, Auckland, NZ












Image gallery: James Cook High's Royal encounter on Steinlager 2 *Feature
Volvo Ocean Race - Maersk Line named shipping partner
Congressional Cup - Victory for Taylor Canfield and crew
SSV Oliver Hazard Perry joins America's Tall Ship fleet + Video
2014 Halifax – Saint-Pierre Ocean Race
Oyster Regatta Antigua - Glorious conditions prevail on final day
WWA Pro Card Qualifier - Pro Cards earned at Freedom Wake Park
Christmas Caribbean Rally - Top class sailors to compete
Earth Day boater tips
Anna Tunnicliffe - from CrossFit to Extreme 40's
Charleston Race Week - Photos by Chris Howell
Image Gallery: Stratis SL33 flies on the Waitemata
Audi Melges 20- Sperry Topsider Charleston Race Week - Light final day
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - PSP Logistics prepares for USA
ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères - Crème of the crop to compete
Congressional Cup: Luna Rossa makes podium in first event
Int 14 World Championships 2015 launch new event website
International Optimist Regatta Clinic and Team Race - Register now!
Congressional Cup: World top rankers finish that way in Long Beach
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week Day 3 finale
America's Cup: Gino Morrelli outlines the new AC62 design   
Doyle Sails New Zealand signs Andrew Brown as One Design Manager   
America's Cup: Dean Barker's Blog - A sail with the Duke and Duchess *Feature   
29er World Youth Sailing Week Easter regatta - Day 1 and 2 overall   
C Thomas Clagett Jr Memorial Clinic/Regatta - Entries start to roll in   
50th Congressional Cup: See the delayed coverage and media conferences   
Clipper Race 10 Day 27: Closing stages - Qingdao to San Francisco   
Canfield, Williams, Bruni, Swinton in Congressional Cup final four   
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week - Day 2   
Audi Melges 20 Charleston Race Week - Perfect conditions in Charleston   
Oyster Regatta Antigua - Full on ocean conditions for day 3   
PWA World Tour - A taste of things to come at La Torche + Video   
Women's International Match Racing Series kicks off in June   
Melges 32 Audi Tron Sailing Series - Action shots by Max Ranchi   
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Frustrating conditions   
Man rescued after falling overboard in Pacific taken to hospital   
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week 2014 - Youth leading Melges 20   
Congressional Cup - Canfield leads toward Congressional Cup sailoffs   
Sperry Top-Sider Charleston Race Week 2014 - Perfection for Day 1   
America's Cup: Coutts claims ISAF Jury on a crusade, backs Kiwi report *Feature   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
X6XL VIR US