The Big Sailboat Move!
Since we first realized that we were going to be building a boat in Alberta, the thought of the eventual day we'd need to haul her out was always in the back of our minds.  A far away concern that wouldn't be considered for a long, long time.

Suddenly, we have pretty much done all we can do, and the time to take her to the coast to where she will be launched is at hand. The act of moving a boat through the mountains seems benign enough at first glance, but to be honest, it was, for me anyway, probably the most anxious 3 days of my life.

It was like our "baby" was going out into the "big world" and her fate during the trip was out of our hands. Gena was mostly nervous about the method we were using to load her on the trailer. I must admit I never would have attempted what we were doing, but these guys are experienced and have done this type of thing many times before.

Because of the weight on the bow, the picker on the truck couldn't lift it and the trailer so the only other method was to jack the bow, then the stern, back and forth each time adding blocks to raise her higher and higher. Once high enough, the trailer was positioned, and supports we had made were cut away.

Each time I was somewhat reluctant to plasma cut the supports out, but after having seen the whole boat balance on only her keel we became more confident. A good sign!

Most of the neighbors around us were popping in and out for a look at our progress. I don't remember much being so nervous. That was a blur.

I have heard others say following the boat out is not a good idea if you're nervous about the move, but we wanted to see her off of the 7 km stretch of lumpy pothole filled gravel road, which is quite a rough ride even in the car.

The video (wave mouse over it below) shows her bouncing around but not much came loose when checked at the other end.

There was a moment when she danced around on the trailer as if she were in rough seas, and I swear my heart stopped for a second or two!

Click here to see video out of browser

Dry road, dry mouth!
Once on the highway it was smooth "sailing". The next serious concern was the weight on the axels of the trailer. Everything heavy in the boat, i.e. chains, anchors, trim ballast lead, was moved forward to put some load on the truck.


Once at the scales, the load seemed well balanced according to the Nisku scales, so we bid our farewells and went for dinner. Because tomorrow was a Sunday, the boat wouldn't leave Edmonton until Monday.


Anxiety was high for the next 3 days as we waited for news of her arrival. We left for Vancouver early Tuesday morning, and at around 4 pm received a call from Randy, the driver. "The boats in the marina, and safely on stands".

A wave of relief came over us, and the mood from then on was one of excitement, not worry!

We wouldn't see her until the next morning, but we could imagine her happily resting among other "boat" friends. Little did we know, she was sitting on her own at the end of the dry dock road crowded on each side with boats of every size and shape. Just like a queen on her throne in front of all her servants.

It turned out that the weather was miserable, and the travel lift owner (whose employees had all left) didn't want to mess around waiting for someone to launch, then offload our boat into their spot etc. This suits us fine, more room to work, and some distance from the screaming grinders, and worn drill bits whistling hopelessly into now work hardened stainless steel, and other noise from boats in the "row".

Gena stands proudly in front of Dulcie-Darlene, now safely on terra firma
Now the fun can begin! Mounting the radar arch, wefax antenna, vhf antenna, gps antenna, the wind sensor and anemometer, davits, self steering, wind generator, aft stanchions, radar antenna and mount, the C.A.R.D. radar detector, bum rails, search light, swim ladder, big winches, and other stuff, and the mast. Wow!

We are very excited to see her all together. We are also happy with All-Tow's professional service. Thanks guys!

I will continue posting pages from here until the launch to keep everyone up to date.  May 12th 2008.
Just keep clicking the "next"  button as you did on the building part of the site. S&G*


The haul:
3 days - 1 to load, 2 for travel

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