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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been thinking of spending some time fishing Ambleside/Cap this year and was wondering how far a run it is from Cates Park? I have a 17 foot runabout (closed bow) with a 70 and will comfortably cruise at 21-25 mph.
My big concern is less about time and more about how treacherous a run that is. Lots of cross waves and large commercial traffic. My brother in law and I went out of Coal Harbour on a 24 foot Grady last year and didn't think I'd like being out there in my own boat much.
Any thoughts from anyone that's spent any time out there?

Thanks
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Sink....it would be up to you and your confidence level in operating your boat. There are rental boats coming out of Granville Island that run into Burarrd Inlet all the time; and MANY of them have no clue what they are doing. There are also a large number of 14-18' foot boats navgating the local waters all the time. Personally I would be more concerned navaigating in amongst the chaos that can happen along Ambleside and the mouth of the Cap!! :wallbash:

Operate the boat and take it where you feel confident and stay in your confidence "zone". :peace:

Yes there is some larger traffic with freighters, cruise ships etc but you just naviagate their wake accordingly. Bear in mind in the "Inlet" you are not going to have them steaming along at full tilt and experience the wake that you will out towards the mouth of English Bay.

Just keep an eye out and be careful under Lions Gate if the tide is running AND there is larger boat traffic as the waves/wakes can be a bit erratic.

As I said....just be safe and operate in your own comfort level.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. I've been operating boats my whole life (I'm 40 now) and I am competent at the helm. I suppose I am more cautious than many people because I usually have my 7 year old son with me and I've seen so many stupid people tricks over the years.

I live in White Rock and want to fish the North Shore. Seems like launching at Reed point then running the boat down would make sense so I could check out Cates and the mouth of the Seymour. Maybe I'm wrong. Would it be better to trailer to a boat launch on the North Shore then just fish there? Where would you suggest I launch? I'm new to salt water salmon.

Thanks for your advise.
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Sink...

I am not too sure about North Shore launches, the state of them now and what would be your best bet. I generally come from the other side of English Bay and not sure about the launch at Ambleside (if it's still there). But definitely NOT Horseshoe, unless it was glass calm; if you are a bit leery and with your son in the boat, the "haystack" chop can really chuck you around off of Lighthouse Park.

Another option is to launch at Vanier Park in Vancouver (entrance to False Creek by the Planetarium). Although things can blow up pretty well in English Bay, you at least can hug the shoreline around Stanley Park and just watch the shipping lane, currents etc under Lions Gate.

If you are leary out there, just keep an eye on the weather and listen to the weather reports. Get out there early as it "tends" to be much more calm through the morning hours and then will blow up a bit by late morning early afternoon......if it is going to.

Hopefully some of the "North Shore" guys can give you some info on the launches over there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I've heard before that if you launch at Horseshoe Bay you should fish in and around that area. Not too familiar with it but I've heard lots of good things.
Here's a picture of how not to launch at Ambleside...
 

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I travel from Belcarra to that area every weekend in my 21' boat. It is fairly calm all the way to ambleside. the only thing you have to watch is the standing waves under the 2nd narrows when you have a large tide running. Other than that just watch out for all the junk in the water and you'll be good. I was at Tunstall bay in some big weather last weekend, and saw a 12' (approx) boston whaler out and about. Not something I would do, but it is quite a common practice. Just have all the appropriate safety gear and you'll be rippin their lips off!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks everyone,

I've been in some pretty heavy water over the years - once with a 6 or 7 month pregnant wife in a very remote big lake in the off season. Still hearing about that one...
Standing waves under the second narrows? How tall? I wonder what's the best way to approach them? Do you find a way around them or just push straight through?

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I regularly fish Ambleside/Cap in my lightweight aluminum canue with a 2.5hp yamaha, or bell bouy area.
For Ambleside, I launch at Ambleside. Watch the Tides though - with my rig low tide is not a problem but I've seen multiple vehicular dunkings there over the last 5 years, usually 2WDs stuck in the sand at the end of the ramp.
For BB, I launch off Jericho beach, but you can use the ramp by the planetarium.

Either shouldn't be a problem with your rig. The tides at the cap and under the bridge can be VERY strong, but you can avoid the worst parts by watching the water (as long as a cruise ship isn't passing by at the time).

I use a handheld VHF to listen to the traffic (and fishing tips).
 

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Living in burnaby with a 18 footer and only a subaru to pull it i use Cates or Rocky point all the time.

Usually only need to watch out at a couple spots.
I find underneath the second narrows to be a area where if your too far north approaching the bridge you can run into some trouble, as its fairly shallow. As mentioned the tides can make passage a little hairy.

Inside the harbour i tend to stay fairly close to the north shore as it's more direct.

I try to time my passage under the lions gate so that i can make it through without any larger vessels going through. Standing Waves and Large Vessel traffic make that area kinda scary.

I would rather use ambleside but that launch is too challenging to park and launch at low tide.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
All very good advise. I like the idea of the quay for lunch. I didn't know you could tie up there. I also like the idea of launching at Vanier park, especially if the wife is will me - go check out false creek from the water. I will probably try both at some point this summer. I hope to get out there this weekend if I can figure out the impeller on my old Merc 4.5 kicker...
I'll be in a Gold and White Glastron with a Grey top. What VHF channel do people use out there?
 

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Sink....you can also tie up and have a bite in Granville Island. There are a few slips right below the market.

The good thing going that route as well......good crabbing "en route" to Ambleside ;)

If you're in the hood.....or anyone for that matter launching at Vanier let me know....I just bought a house on Kits Point and am just a stones throw away.
 

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I've always found the run from cates to ambleside to be a good run as long as you use your head...

1) Whenever approaching 2nd narrows (from either direction) stay to the south shore....standing waves on the east side of the bridge can be very large (respect these)

2) Staying to the north while traversing the harbour will keep you away from seaplanes and most of the random traffic ... be wary of the seabus leaving the north shore (and of course watch for the one from the south)

3) Again under lionsgate be careful as the tidal rip through there can create havoc, move over to stanley park side (southside) when approaching the narrows

4) Both narrows have hidden sandbars on the north sides, with the 2nd narrows sandbar extending east for some ways...(don't become the tourist attraction of the day)

5) Have fun...be careful...and observe whats happening around you at all times as this is a very busy harbour...Good Luck.
 
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