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Re: Info on sailing on Kootenay Lake




MY wife and I trailered our SJ 23 from Medford Oregon to Lake Tahoe last 
July. I found alot of useful information on the web site www.boattahoe.com 
and from NOAA chart 18665. Our plan was to spend one week on the boat and 
another week at our time share at South Shore. We had made arrangements to 
moore our boat for the second week at South Shore but when we arrived there 
found it next to impossible to launch our boat at South Shore. One city 
marina we tried actually had an overpass you had to go under that I couldn't 
clear, another didn't have a dock attached. Most of the facilities are for 
power boats and use lifts (up to $165 each way!). We finally called around 
and found a marina on the west shore at Meeks Bay that had a place where we 
could rig and then a fair boat ramp. They also allowed us to store our truck 
and trailer there for the first week for $10/night. We spend most of the 
first week anchored at Emerald Bay. There's alot of boat traffic there during 
the day, especially weekends, but generally only a couple of boats there at 
night. Also a nice state park with restrooms, hiking trails and great 
swimming. Most folks med moore so you can actually step off the back of the 
boat on great sandy beaches. There is also a boat campground at Emerald with 
great facilities for a fee. (no fee where we anchored at the far end). One 
day we motored (no wind till 3-4 in the afternoon) up to Tahoe City for 
supplies (Tahoe is abut 23 miles long). While tied to a public pier there a 
storm came up with 40+ knot winds and 4-5 foot swells. It was blowing us into 
the pier so all we could do was hold on to the boat and make sure we had as 
much protection out as possible. We didn't suffer much damage but seveal 
boats next to us did. Another day we motored across the lake to Secret Bay on 
the East shore. I'd intended to spend the night there but we couldn't find a 
sheltered anchorage there and so had to motor back across the lake (14 miles) 
in the afternoon. About 1/3 of the way across I  could see a dark line on the 
water moving from west to east. Sure enough we found westerly winds of about 
25-30 knots dead on the nose. It took us about 31/2 hours to motor across 
that day. The winds generally blow from west to east starting about 2-4 in 
the afternoon. Emerald Bay is by far the most sheltered anchorage (and also 
the most beautiful!) After the first week we left the boat and trailer at 
Meeks Bay so we could spend the second week at South Shore in our time share. 
Looking back on it we wished we'd just spent both weeks on the boat in the 
Emerald Bay area. Lots of interesting historical homes to look at on the west 
shore, great anchorages and swimming (warm enough in shallow water). Let me 
know if I can answer any more questions or feel free to call me at (541) 
734-2213. Happy sailing!...Tom Dew

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