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Subject: EASTER ~ flotilla secrets unveiled
(Posted on Feb 25, 2016 at 08:53PM by Colin Jackson) Tags:

For years now, one of our legendary flotillas has been the EASTER cruise.  We tend to believe that what works doesn't necessarily need fixing, so here's the insights into what makes this thing tick (from ADMIRAL EASTER BUNNY himself):
1) We start by planning the trip so people don't need to toil over the planning.  The highlights of where we are going have been up for a while here
2) People join in a number of different ways.  Some folks have a group - that means join with your own boat, your own charter boat or the boat you just stole (caution with that last one please).   If you don't have a group, join one through the CREW CLUB.
3) We kick off on THURSDAY night with a briefing on weather, communications & some of the details that unfold as the weather sets up and we can more accurately guess the exact flavour.

4) We shove off together from either VANCOUVER or SIDNEY.  For the VANCOUVER boats, we tend to see the start of the SOUTHERN STRAITS race, where silly people head off to sail into the night while we bask in the comfort of our warm cruising boats. There's a lead boat to help shepherd the group through passes and away from known hazards.  
Your leader will be dockside to help catch you & known to jump aboard to help with your first docking of the season if required.  EASTER is a great event to blow off those 'boating cobwebs'.
After arriving at THETIS island where we all enjoy dinner ashore at a funky restaurant.  We always love when the musically adept take to the piano.  We love it more when the not so musically adept take to the piano. 

dodd narrows conga line
5) Cruising north, a legendary 'conga line of boats' forms near DODD NARROWS so we can head through at a prescribed time (in your trip plan).   Once the fleet is through, people tend to explore NORTHUMBERLAND CHANNEL, where sea lions are known to bask on the log booms just south of NANAIMO.  Our destination is the marine park at NEWCASTLE ISLAND.  From there, a task force is dispatched to prepare for the evening bonfire.  We regroup at the DINGHY DOCK PUB - the only floating pub in the region.  There's a family friendly side for our younger folk.

6) Sunday morning is the EPIC all ages treasure hunt.  We've had explorers from 8-80 yrs of age.   Come learn about the 'that's not chocolate' standing joke & enjoy exploring an abandoned quarry full of treasure.   From there, we set off to SILVA BAY for a final evening of fun before heading back home on MONDAY.


*For those unable to do the 4 days (those not working with banks, schools, government offices & the underemployed/retired), know we often have a few boats head home from NEWCASTLE directly.
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