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Crews working the harbour's west end
General News · 23rd April 2016
Amanda Glickman
Hard to believe it’s been seven years A special thanks this year to the Harbour Authority of Cortes Island for sponsoring this year’s event! And of course thank you to the Gorge Harbour Marina for their continuing generosity in allowing us to use the boat launch, dock, BBQs and meet and greet area, along with coffee!

A total of 32 people participated including shellfish growers, upland property owners, live aboards, recreational boaters, harbour authority members, and members of the general Cortes Island community. Thank you everyone for your time and effort!! Participants not included in the photo below were also Paul and Dan of Island Seafarms. Thank you Paul for making the trip all the way from Saltspring! And of course a special thanks to Henry for providing his garbage truck and removing our findings to the recycle centre.

We had a terrific turnout despite the threat of rain. It held off and we had a marvellous time surveying the harbour and finding an assortment of treasures. As seems to be the annual norm, the east end was fairly clean, but the west end was pretty loaded. The floathouse is still aground, but a team is working on its removal. A skiff was found at the high water mark along with styrofoam floats, loads of shellfish baskets, bits of string, and old line.

A few notes on the harbour’s general health…. the shoreline is looking great, but we continue to work on an old oyster leases’ debris along the north coast, just north west of the Stove Islets. There is a submersed rope with a series of old fenders tied to it. The fenders have significant growth on them and are difficult to see for navigating vessels. They have proven to be a navigational hazard over the past years and we would like to know if anyone knows anything about them before they’re removed.

The series of moorings just off the government dock - a few of them are not well marked (using black floats) and one of them has a dangerously long tether. We would all appreciate if the tether could be shortened up and a weight added to pull the floating line down and out of propellar’s way, and if the dark moorings could be made more visible (SOLAS tape works great, but an orange ball is better). Anyone requiring assistance with this please feel free to contact me… It would be great to get some names and phone numbers on the moorings (as per Coast Guard recommendations) so the owners can be contacted if they break off or if they get accidentally damaged (ie cut by a prop).

There are a number of vessels at anchor or on moorings with no identification in the windows. In the past we’ve pulled vessels off the shore when moorings have broken and vessels without identification become subject to salvage rights. If you do care about your boat, please put a readable note in one or two of the portlights with your name and contact information so we can contact you if there are any dangers for your vessel! Please be aware that this is all in the interest of a safe and community used harbour, NOT as a means of regulation or control. Boats have souls…. let’s take care of them!

Thanks everyone for showing your love for Gorge Harbour!
Two loaded barges...
Two loaded barges...
The prizes....
The prizes....
The work crew!
The work crew!
Loading Henry's truck
Loading Henry's truck