Tag Archives: HACI

Long term moorage in Whaletown and Cortes Bay fully booked for the summer 

As the weather turns warmer, some recreational vessels seek moorage at Cortes Island docks for periods of between one and six months. This is called long-term-moorage. On Wednesday, May 3, the Harbour Authority of Cortes Island (HACI) issued a press release stating that their docks in Whaletown and Cortes Bay are now full for long-term-moorage this summer. 

“When we’re talking about long-term recreational moorage, we’re just talking about individuals who are looking to moor a boat and not live on it,” explained Harbourmaster Jenny Hartwick

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More Than Just A Store: Cortes Natural Food Co-op

“One of our mandates is to create good employment for Islanders who are here full-time year round. And for our youth returning in the summer as well. It’s a great place for people who move to the island to start out and get to know the culture of the island by working with us.” — Mary Lavelle

The Cortes Natural Food Co-op is one of the top five or six employers on the island, an attraction for tourists and visitors, and the go-to grocery store for many year-round residents. Active members enjoy several benefits, but membership is not required to shop there — so the store serves many times more people every year than its approximately 360 active members.

Employing 20 people even in the off-season, and with over $2 million in sales each year, the Co-op is a significant island business. But it also makes a conscious effort to be a good neighbour. As General Manager Mary Lavelle put it during our interview, “Staff, board, management — we’re always considering the community. That is one of the factors that we always consider in our decision making: our community. And I think that’s part of what makes us so special.”

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Harbour Authority Cortes Island: The Small Craft Harbours connection

Harbour Authority Cortes Island (HACI) has embarked upon a campaign to inform the public who they are and what they do. Harbourmaster Jenny Hartwick provided Cortes Currents with a concise description of the organization. 

“The Harbour Authority is a nonprofit organization, which is made up of an eight volunteer board of directors. All of whom are local year round, residents  and are actively involved in boating on Cortes, either commercial fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, or as recreational boaters. Under contract with Small Craft Harbours, the Harbour Authority is responsible for the operation and basic maintenance of the four government docks on the island: Squirrel Cove, Manson’s Landing, Cortes Bay, and Gorge Harbour,” she said. “We also operate the Whaletown Dock, which was formally divested from Transport Canada in 2009. The Harbour Authority actually owns that dock outright.” 

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Little room left for Liveaboards on Cortes Island docks

On Monday, Dec 12, Gorge Harbour Marina Resort (GHMR) announced that its seasonal liveaboard program will come to an end next Spring. 

“GHMR has never, to the best of my knowledge, offered year-round live aboard opportunities but has run a small seasonal program in previous years where under ten vessels were hosted,” wrote Jason Johnson, General Manager of QXMC as well as the resort.

“In 2022, the program has seven vessels, under short term live aboard contract ending the end of April 2023. In all cases, the stays were contingent on contracts being signed, liability insurance coverage for each vessel and one vessel per person. While these changes were difficult for guests, it allowed the 2022 program to continue.” 

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Boats at Mansons Landing given a reprieve

The boats stored along the shoreline in Mansons Landing Provincial Park have been given a reprieve.

For the 15 most derelict vessels, this means another 30 days before they are removed by BC Parks. Cortes Currents followed three Park Rangers down the beach to watch them tag their first vessel, a fibreglass dinghy with holes torn out of its bottom. Another derelict vessel was being used as the roof of a crude shelter in the trees.  

There were a total of 57 boats in the park when the rangers arrived last month. Some have since been removed, but there are still a considerable number on the beach. Most of them look seaworthy. At some point in the near future, albeit measured in years rather than days, they must all be removed.

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