Archive for the 'Cruising' Category

Jun 30 2023

Anchoring Etiquette

Published by under Cruising

It’s always Happy Hour entertainment or a “what are they thinking” moment watching boats come in and anchor near us.  For those that have been doing it awhile, here’s a couple reminders…for the newbies, please practice, observe others, and ask questions.

  • when you arrive in anchorage, take note of how the boats are sitting to the wind and/or tide and set your anchor in the same direction.  If you have concerns, motor by an anchored boat and ask them where their anchor is and how much rode/chain they have out-they will appreciate your consideration
  • if the bay is empty, don’t crowd the only boat there…they may want their privacy and please, if possible, don’t anchor directly upwind from someone.  They don’t want to smell your cigarette smoke, BBQ or generator exhaust.
  • common anchoring protocol in our protected bays is a 3:1 scope…not difficult math…water is 30 feet deep means you set out 90 feet of chain (you will need more if you have a chain/rode (rope) combo).
  • when you’ve found your spot, motor around a 100-foot circle from your anticipated spot to check your depth and any obstacles, bring your boat head to wind/current (you’ve already checked how others around you are sitting) and then bring your boat to a COMPLETE STOP (look at the bubbles/seaweed in the water).  Drop your anchor to the depth of water you are in and then start backing down, letting out the scope you need.
  • When you reach your 3:1, slowly keep the boat in reverse as the anchor and chain set.  Site on the shore, both sides of your boat, for any movement and take note of landmarks (ie: flagpole lined up with window in red house, tree tops). Then put in neutral and again take note of your position.

Do Not just dump all your anchor and chain in one spot, turn off your engine and go ashore!  You would be surprised at how many do just that. We also watched a 35′ Bayliner drop what was maybe 40 feet of chain in 40 feet of water and then start backing down.  He traveled backwards from just off of Arrabella’s Landing, past a couple well anchored boats to the other side of Gig Harbor where the water finally got shallower and at that point, he connected with the bottom, about 50 feet from the beach!  Fortunately for him, it was high tide and calm weather-imagine how ugly it would be if it was different!  That is not the boater you want to be or to be next to in an anchorage!

Have fun this summer, be safe and be a good neighbor.


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Jun 24 2023

4th of July fireworks by boat

The 4th is a little over a week away and falls on a Tuesday.  This means people will have a long weekend to get away from the dock and cruise locally. Some popular displays to see by boat are:

(editor’s note:  at the time of this posting, there were very few details available on proposed shows due to the disruptions of the past 2 years, thus the info from previous years shows)

Poulsbo   this year’s show is cancelled, and future shows currently do not have a sponsor Poulsbo’s Third of July celebration canceled; focus now on Viking Fest (

The homes around Liberty Bay and the Casino will have their own shows.


Quartermaster Harbor-Vashon Island (private sponsored show over inner harbor – here is a 2016 video), there is no confirmation that this show is still on, and this is the first year that the King County Council has banned fireworks in King County, so there is a lot of unknown factors…

Lake Union-Seattle

Everett Waterfront

Friday Harbor and Roche Harbor


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Jun 15 2023

Whales and Boating

Published by under Cruising

Just a reminder to be aware of the regulations surrounding the observation of our whales (and sea lions) while out on the water.  Recently, 2 boaters were fined due to being too close to some orcas.  We are fortunate to have such beautiful creatures in our backyard and truly blessed when we encounter them while out boating.  But please, know the rules to keep them (and yourselves) safe.  Everyone’s got a camera these days, so don’t assume no one can see you.

Read the laws for Washington and Canada here:  Home – Be Whale Wise

Whale sightings: Orca Network

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Jun 10 2023

Do I have to register my motorized dinghy?

Better to be registered and avoid the hassle, expense and embarrassment of family and friends some weekend when you are out boating…

As a resident of the State of Washington, YES, with one minor exception.  Rules in other states may be different, but in Washington, per Chapter 88.02.020 RCW Dispositions VESSEL REGISTRATION

(1) Except as provided in this chapter, a person may not own or operate any vessel, including a rented vessel, on the waters of this state unless the vessel has been registered and displays a registration number and a valid decal in accordance with this chapter. A vessel that has, or is required to have, a valid marine document as a vessel of the United States is only required to display a valid decal.

Exception for motorized vessels:

(7) A vessel equipped with propulsion machinery of less than ten horsepower that:
(a) Is owned by the owner of a vessel for which a valid vessel number has been issued; and
(b) Displays the number of that numbered vessel followed by the suffix “1” in the manner prescribed by the department; and
(c) Is used as a tender for direct transportation between the numbered vessel and the shore and for no other purpose.
Many boaters seem to think that putting “tender to” on their inflatable in lieu of registration numbers will suffice.  Nope. (See 7b above), and “registered vessel to shore” (moored or anchored mothership) means just that…no fishing, crabbing, visiting other boats, etc.  (Tickets have been handed out in Shilshole in the past)
Here is an article that summarizes the requirements in understandable language…


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Feb 03 2023

Seattle Boat Show, Feb 3rd-11th

If you own a boat, want a boat, if you need something for your boat or just have questions…. The boat show is for you!  Take the time to go-you might find what you are looking for.

There are a wide variety of seminars that cover everything from fishing & crabbing to engine maintenance to cruising Desolation Sound….



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