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Lover’s Leap With My Lover – Stuart Island, Washington

Lover’s Leap with My Lover – Stuart Island, Washington

Stunning Views from Lover's Leap on Stuart Island!  – Just when we think we've seen most of the amazing spots in the San Juan Islands, along comes this stop at Stuart Island. Located in the northern sector of the San Juan Islands, Stuart Island sports two harbors, Prevost and Reid. Prevost Harbor has seven offshore buoys and 256 feet of dock space. Reid Harbor offers fifteen offshore buoys and 572 feet of dock space on three different docks, two of which are offshore. Stuart Island has 18 primitive campsites, potable water is available most of the year, as are composting and pit toilets. For boaters, a handy barge sits in Reid Harbor for manual pumpouts. A big plus in our world of boating. Otherwise, you must pack out what you bring onto the island. There are two communities on the island, but it is a very remote setting without access to stores or facilities of any kind etc. We anchored in…

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Waiting For Slack Tide Event At Deception Pass? Try Hope Island!

Waiting for Slack Tide Event at Deception Pass? Try Hope Island!

Dropping the Hook at Hope Island – Need a good spot to anchor while waiting to catch slack tide at Deception Pass (Skagit Bay)? Hope Island is our favorite place to throw the hook to do just that. The anchorage, located between La Conner and Whidbey Island on Skagit Bay, is off Hope Island State Park which consists of 200-acre marine park with four primitive campsites within old-growth forests and saltwater marshes, meadows and a trail across the island. The island provides boaters with four or five mooring balls. We usually just drop the hook. The island was named by Commander Charles Wilkes, who's job it was to chart Puget Sound, in 1841, The usual park rules are in effect on the island. No open fires are permitted, and no water is available, but two vault toilets are provided. Although we did not venture off the boat that night, we could have dinghied ashore to take advantage of the trails and…

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A Gem Of An Anchorage – Port Madison, WA

A Gem of an Anchorage – Port Madison, WA

Port Madison is One of Our Favorite Anchorages in the Puget Sound Area! – Still getting to know our new Kismet. Our first get-a-way after we dropped our grandson Silas off to his parents was to return to Port Madison, Washington. Located east of the Olympic Peninsula, at Bainbridge Island, We first visited this anchorage in 2012 soon after we took possession of our then Ranger Tugs R27. So we thought it would be appropriate to make a return visit with the new and improved R29. We are headed north of Puget Sound now, anchoring out as we make our way to Anacortes and then the San Juan Islands. We remembered how peaceful and beautiful it is there and after a week with our active grandson, Silas on board, we were ready for something quiet and restorative. There are a couple yacht clubs in this long narrow inlet, we passed them to go further back, seeking the quietest spot we could…

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Saying Goodbye Is Hard To Do!

Saying Goodbye is Hard to Do!

Reality of Life Does Not Stop When You Board a Boat and Take Off for Ports Unknown – The real world will eventually catch up and find us. Such is what happened during our 2017 Puget Sound cruise. My brother, Ken Targal passed away after a long battle with cancer – too soon. We took a time out and flew back to Michigan to be with family for a few days. Ken was a boater, he loved to be on the water as much as Jim and I do. We were raised on summer visits to a family cottage on Lake Huron where our family had at least five boats of varying sizes. Ken lived in the water during the summer and loved the sunfish and hydroplane in our menagerie of boats. He later moved on to speed boats. He was in his element when he was with his family out on the water, boating. He was an amazing, loving…

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Ranger Tugs Gives Orientation On Volvo Penta D4-300

Ranger Tugs Gives Orientation on Volvo Penta D4-300

Kenny Marrs met us at the boat in the morning of day two of our orientation. He would be covering the Volvo Penta D4-300 engine operations, Garmin electronics, dinghy deployment and retrieval and much more. We’ve known Kenny from the beginning of our Ranger Tugs association, a nicer young man you will never meet. We have seen Kenny in action, the dedication to his customers needs is intuitive and honest. Thanks again, Kenny!  

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Bruno Mars – A Planned Detour Before Heading West

Bruno Mars – A Planned Detour before Heading West

We spent part of three days with my brother, Ken. Heading West Again to Pick Up a New Ranger Tug Trailerable Trawler –  Once again we were on our way across country, west to Des Moines, Washington. This is where we would take possession of our new Ranger Tug R29S. We’ve done this jaunt many times before, starting with a trip to Seattle to take delivery of a Fathom 40 trawler in 2007. We spent the winter there watching it be built before we cruised some in Puget Sound – then we had it trucked back to the Great Lakes that spring. In 2011 we drove out to meet our first Ranger Tug in Kent, Washington and we’ve taken that boat back and forth, across country – four times south to Florida and two more times to explore Puget Sound and British Columbia. A boaters paradise by any experienced cruisers standards. How to Maximize the Trailerable Trawler Lifestyle We weren’t…

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Nice Article On Crew Of Kismet – Sea Magazine – August 2017

Nice Article on Crew of Kismet – Sea Magazine – August 2017

TRAILER BLAZING! Sea Magazine just did a fantastic article about the crew of Kismet in their August 2017 issue. Find out more about this amazing lifestyle choice. Go where you want to boat with less restrictions, less weather restraints and more affordability. Use your boat as an RV when traveling to distant cruising grounds. For the best fun of all, get out on the water and meet up with other Ranger Tug owners, from all corners of the country, at Factory or owner held rendezvous. Become part of the community! That new VolvoPenta Engine will be taking Kismet on some big adventures, by land and by sea! Hope we see you there. #RangerTugs, #VolvoPentaNA #VPtakesme #VolvoPenta Kismet Sea Magazine

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Construction Of The NEW KISMET!

Construction of the NEW KISMET!

UPDATE on the NEW KISMET! Having sold our Ranger Tug R27 a few months ago, we ordered a Ranger Tug R29S, we'll take delivery of our new Kismet in August 2017. So, we are spending the summer boatless! Lots to do at home while we prepare to travel west to Seattle, next month, to take possession. This tug, with a sportier look and a Volvo Penta diesel engine, will take us to some exciting cruising destinations with a quieter, more stable ride. Our new tug will be just a little bit bigger, but still trailerable. Yes, Kismet will look good again in that Hero Red hull. Looking forward to a little more room to accommodate our growing grandchildren. One of our new goals is to share our love of boating with them for many years to come. Construction photos to come soon!

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Boaterhoming Cascade Locks On The Columbia River With Silas

Boaterhoming Cascade Locks On the Columbia River with Silas

Boaterhoming Cascade Locks for the First Time! – Silas didn't hesitate leaving his Mom and his cozy home in Portland, Oregon to go boaterhoming Cascade Locks with his Papa and Ana. We're happy he feels comfortable enough to take off with us like that – Do you think he's inherited the adventure bug DNA? We didn't drive far, that wasn't the mission. Cascade Locks is a city in Hood River County, Oregon, about 25 miles miles from Portland. The name came from a historic set of locks built to improve navigation past the Cascades Rapids of the Columbia River. We'd cruised to Cascade Locks last fall and stayed in town at the city marina. So we were familiar with the area and knew about this small campground located in the heart of the town very close to the marina, on the river, across from the old lock. We wanted to camp with Silas and take advantage of a learning opportunity…

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Boaterhoming In Portland, Oregon

Boaterhoming in Portland, Oregon

Getting a Good Night's Sleep While Boaterhoming in Portland, Oregon! – We didn't waste much time in getting back to the states after our cruising adventure in the Broughton Islands (British Columbia, Canada). Our route was a fairly fast track back to the States to boaterhoming in Portland, OR. After an amazing rendezvous of Ranger Tug owners in Roche Harbor, Washington (San Juan Islands), our sights were set on trailering Kismet south, to Portland to visit our son, Ross and his family, Sarah, Silas and Hadley. Since we wouldn't have a lot of time to spend in Portland, we decided not to put the boat in the water. Instead, we opted to park in front of Ross and Sarah's house for a few nights before we took our 3-year old grandson boaterhoming for a few days. Ross and Sarah have a limited amount of space in their cozy home, so we thought, why not just sleep in the boat while parked…

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Famous Pig Roast At Pierre’s Echo Bay Lodge & Marina

Famous Pig Roast at Pierre’s Echo Bay Lodge & Marina

It's All About the Pig Roast! – We first heard about Pierre's Echo Bay while we were researching the Broughton Islands for our 2016 summer cruise. We made a point of visiting their booth at the the Seattle Boat Show earlier that year while we were collecting information for our upcoming cruise. Owners Pierre and Tove Landry were at the booth when we stopped by to see what they were all about. Their reputation proceeded them, as we already knew about their famous feasts from other boaters. In talking to them and others at the show, we gained a little glimpse into what we could expect that summer as we explored the Broughton Islands. Our trip would not be all wilderness and wildlife, if we charted the right course, our experience would be interspersed with theme meals at unique and colorful floating marinas. Pierre's Echo Bay, being one of the standouts. Because of these little outpost communities spread out around…

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Lunch Stop – Burdwood Group – Broughton Islands, BC

Lunch Stop – Burdwood Group – Broughton Islands, BC

Burdwood Group – A cluster of low lying islands – One of the interesting features of the Burdwood Group Islands are the white shell beaches. This grouping includes Denham Island, Walker Islet and a few other unnamed islands and islets. We stopped for lunch during our day-long exploration on our way to Shoal Harbour. The surroundings were amazing, almost dreamlike with pointy islands all around. It helped that it was an extremely calm day with glassy water below us reflecting the mounds of islands nearby. Above us, the sky was intensely blue at the height of the day, we felt saturated in warm color and dreaminess. It felt like time stood still. We were soon joined by a couple of sailboats, they coasted by as if they were gliding on half-set Jell-o. The Burdwood Group Islands are a popular spot for kayakers. We can see why. I would want to return to this group should we ever make it back to the Broughton Islands. It was that amazing! We made…

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Cruising To Cover More Territory – Broughton Islands, BC Canada

Cruising to Cover More Territory – Broughton Islands, BC Canada

Cruising Along a Fluid Highway Around the Islands – When exploring new cruising territory, like we are right now in the Broughtons, we will often spend the whole day traveling in and out of bays, coves and sounds. We’ll skirt around islands and stick our bow into a shallow inlet to investigate the setting. Our day will be spent watching for wildlife, especially bears foraging for food along the beaches. With limited time in the Broughtons and with so much territory to cover, it just makes sense to maximize our exposure this way. We usually have a trip planned out ahead of time, one that leads to an anchorage at the end of the day. While exploring, we might stop to take in an exceptionally scenic spot and pause for lunch. We’ve been known to spend hours watching bears sunning themselves in grassy low-lands near the water. Our favorite sighting was at Brem Bay, Toba Inlet near Desolation Sound, where we got…

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Dreaming And Conspiring At Joe Cove – Eden Island, Broughton Islands, BC

Dreaming and Conspiring at Joe Cove – Eden Island, Broughton Islands, BC

Joe Cove – Located on the South Side of Eden Island – Today we moved a whopping 12 miles. It was a foggy, damp and still day, everything looked grey and green, even the water. We were determined to head back out into Queen Charlotte Straight in our quest to find those allusive whales. Again no luck on that front, but the fog made our cruise through Arrow Passage, Sunday Harbour and Misty Passage that much more remarkable, from a visual perspective. We can only imagine what it would have been like on a sunny day. We entered Joe Cove on Eden Island to find complete solitude – we were the only boat to use the cove for shelter that night. Guess now is as good a time as any to talk about how it felt to be out in the wilds of British Columbia for three weeks. We have anchored out a good deal during this trip and most anchorages have no viable walking…

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Alert Bay – An Aboriginal Cultural Destination – Broughton Islands, BC

Alert Bay – An Aboriginal Cultural Destination – Broughton Islands, BC

Welcome to Alert Bay –  Having provisioned in Port McNeill, we were good for another two weeks while exploring the Broughton Archipelago. First stop, Alert Bay, an aboriginal cultural destination. Alert Bay is home to about 1,300 Namgis people, a First Nations band within the larger Kwakwaka'wakw nation of northern Vancouver Island. The members of the village community coexist side-by-side, in harmony with the largely non-native population that resides in the village on the south-side of Cormorant Island. We tied up at the Government Marina for a few hours. Our mission was to walk around the village, grab some lunch and visit the U’mista Cultural Centre Museum. The Centre is a First Nations Museum collection of historically significant masks, totem poles, photos and educational videos of the area and there way of life. First we walked the docks at the village marina. Lots of old fishing boats and a few unusual pleasure boats and yachts graced the harbor docks. Next, we headed up into…

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Provisioning At Heriot Bay On Quadra Island

Provisioning at Heriot Bay on Quadra Island

The Proximity of Heriot Bay to Desolation Sound, Gave Us Another Option for Provisioning The need to provision mid-way through our month-long stay required a major shopping trip. Unlike our two-week trip to Desolation Sound three years ago. Since we are consuming breakfast, lunch and dinner – all on the boat every day, we eventually ran out of the supplies that keep our bodies happily fueled. Provisioning while cruising in Desolation Sound for a longer stay is a little bit of a challenge. The options nearby are limited to Refuge Cove. Although centrally located within Desolation Sound, the products available at Refuge Cove are limited and quite expensive. It's a fun stop! If you are only staying a week or two in Desolation, you won't starve. You can catch up on most chores, use wifi, enjoy a fresh baked cinnamon roll, fuel up and restock the propane and water tanks. Just like we would at any marina. But thrifty boaters that we are, after two weeks we…

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Phenomenal Factory Rendezvous Turnout!

Phenomenal Factory Rendezvous Turnout!

The Largest Boat Rendezvous in the World – Jeff Messmer When we made plans last fall to bring Kismet out to the Pacific Northwest for a full year, we knew we wanted our itinerary to include Fluid Motion’s (parent company of both Ranger Tugs and Cutwater boats) 2016 Ranger Tugs & Cutwater Boats Factory Rendezvous. This year the event was held at Roche Harbor, Washington the first week in September. 150 Ranger Tugs and Cutwater Boats Attending the 2016 Rendezvous in Roche Harbor, Washington We’ve now been to three rendezvous in Washington state. Our first was in 2011, when we took possession of our Ranger Tug R27, it was held in Bremerton, WA. The second was in 2013 when we trailered our boat out for the summer season – mainly to join the Desolation Sound Cruise (a group cruise put on by the factory to help new owners get out on the water). The 2013 rendezvous was held in Anacortes, WA. With each event attended, we encountered a growing and cohesive boating…

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Anchoring In Von Donop Inlet – Ha’thayim Marine Provincial Park

Anchoring in Von Donop Inlet – Ha’thayim Marine Provincial Park

  We Chose Von Donop Inlet as an Anchorage Twice During Our Stay in the Desolation Sound Area – Von Donop Inlet is situated on the northwest side of Cortes Island, it can be entered from northern Sutil Channel. The inlet is part of the Discovery Islands, not Desolation Sound Marine Park. We had to leave Desolation Sound on two occasions to provision. So, we used Von Donop as an anchorage both times. First was a trip to Campbell River and another time on our way to Heriot Bay. The inlet is long and narrow and, although we cruised past many boats already anchored the length of the inlet, we chose to go all the way in to the bay at the south end. We felt it afforded the most protection from high winds and we felt a storm brewing. Rainy Day Blues in Von Donop Inlet We love to read and have lots of books downloaded to our iPads. But for rainy days on the boat, ones where you don't even want to read anymore, walk…

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Toba Wildernest – Experience The Magic!

Toba Wildernest – Experience the Magic!

Toba Wildernest – One of Our Favorite Spots in the Desolation Sound Cruising Area – Toba Wildernest is a picturesque mountainside marina and resort located at the mouth of Toba Inlet. The inlet is a deep fjord on the mainland of British Columbia, adjacent to Desolation Sound. The marina is well-protected by Double Island. The first thing that strikes me as unique about this inlet is the most unusual, milky, greenish blue color of the water leading to and around Toba Wildernest. It continues as far as one can see. The beauty of Toba Inlet opens up my heart and soul! I believe the many boaters who come from all over the world to visit the Hunters’ in their little slice of paradise, can’t help but be transformed internally and perhaps spiritually by one of nature’s masterful creations. A scenic panorama of truly massive proportions has the ability to make a human being feel humble and almost insignificant in the scheme of things –…

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Grace Harbour – First Anchorage In Desolation Sound 2016

Grace Harbour – First Anchorage in Desolation Sound 2016

Grace Harbour is a Good Starting Point for Our Desolation Sound Cruising Adventure! Keeping true to form, we decided to begin our Desolation Sound cruise by anchoring in Grace Harbour, just as we had done in 2013. Grace Harbour is a small anchorage and Marine Park on the mainland of British Columbia accessed by Malaspina Inlet. The anchorage is extremely well-protected from wind and waves. The harbour has a little beach with a restroom facilities and a hiking trail. A Slow Start to the Boating Season! The anchorage was not very crowded this time, a fact we would soon wonder about as we proceeded north through the Gulf Islands, the Sunshine Coast, Jervis Inlet and finally Desolation Sound. We were here, starting our cruise, in late July three years ago. Maybe the season is off to a slow start, because we had a hard time finding a good spot last time. Timing makes all the difference when cruising British Columbia. We started…

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Stopping At Powell River To Provision

Stopping at Powell River to Provision

Powell River – Great Place to Provision – After only four days spent at Chatterbox Falls, you wouldn't think we'd have to provision again so soon. Since our mode of transportation is walking from grocery stores with our shopping bags, we can only cart so much stuff back to the boat. It will be harder and more expensive to grocery shop in Desolation Sound, so we always stop at grocery stores when we can and stock up on important items such as beer and chocolate. Sometimes the grocery stores offer to drive us back to the marina, and we almost always take them up on the offer, unless we don't need much or need the exercise. We also needed to take care of some business while in Powell River. We'll be visiting a copy shop, the post office, a used book store and, of course, the grocery store. Shoe shopping is on the list, Jim is looking for new sandals, because his old ones…

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Lasqueti Island – Life Off The Grid

Lasqueti Island – Life Off the Grid

Lasqueti Island – Our fascination with this island had just begun – It was just a short 12-mile hop from our anchorage in Tribune Bay on Hornby Island to False Bay, located at the north end of Lasqueti Island. The roughly 42-sq-mile island is situated less than ten miles from Vancouver Island. We really didn’t know what to expect once we got to the island, but we had a feeling that we were in for a special treat. We had heard a little about the alternative lifestyle on Lasqueti Island during our last visit to the Pacific Northwest. We were intrigued but, due to circumstances at the time, the stop was bypassed. All we had heard was this… there was an island in the middle of the Strait of Georgia that, in more recent history, a bunch of hippies had made their home, living off the grid… in more ways than one. There are two docks, one at each end of the island.…

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Hike To Conover Cove – Wallace Island, BC

Hike to Conover Cove – Wallace Island, BC

Conover Cove - The Dream of David and Jeanne Conover – The next morning we rowed to the dinghy dock located mid-point in Princess Cove. We wanted to hike the path at the perimeter of Wallace Island, which leads to Conover Cove. Once there, we stumbled upon a surprising find, the structural remains Conover Settlement. One of the buildings in particular knocked our socks off because of all the, mostly driftwood, carved, painted and decorated mementos left by boaters to mark their visit to the island over the years. It truly is a work of art in the making. Royal Cedar Cottages Were Built by the Conovers mid-nineteenth century. The island's origin was charted as Narrow Island, but named after Captain Wallace Houston, a surveyor in the 1850s. More recent history states that Wallace Island was owned by David Conover and his wife, Jeanne in 1946. Their desire was to build a resort on the island, Royal Cedar Cottages – there were once ten buildings built in the…

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Ganges Salt Spring Island, British Columbia

Ganges Salt Spring Island, British Columbia

One Night in Ganges Salt Spring Island –  After we pulled up anchor in Madrona Bay, we headed the short way into Ganges Salt Spring, to stay for one night before we head over to Wallace Island to anchor in Princess Cove. We love Ganges, it's a quaint waterfront town with lots of character. The only other time we were here was during our trip to the Pacific Northwest for the Ranger Tugs Desolation Sound Cruise. The town is just big enough that everything is within walking distance of the marina and docks on the waterfront. The marina was not very busy and there were lots of available dockage. There were two other Ranger Tugs with us at the dock this night.      

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