Small Bay Boats

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Moorings for Day Charter Boats Would be a First for Magens Bay - St. John Source (press release)

A preliminary proposal to place four to eight permanent moorings for the exclusive use of transient and day charter boats in Magens Bay met with mixed reviews at a public meeting at the beach Saturday.

“I am going to fight that,” said Carol A. Callwood, whose regular routine includes three early mornings a week at the beach.

“Amen to that,” chimed another of the dozen or so residents who sat on cement benches and at picnic tables through the hour-and-a- half meeting at Shed No. 2.

The attendees included Magens Bay Authority Board members, University of the Virgin Islands students and faculty and concessionaires and potential concessionaires seeking information on the coming changes to the beach’s restaurant and other commercial operations.

Jean-Pierre “JP” Oriol, director of Coastal Zone Management for the Virgin Islands, told the group he was there to speak for the day charter boat operators.

Oriol said the British Virgin Islands has for years been the destination of choice for day charter operators, but issues such as increasing fees and bureaucracy have have turned the business away from the BVI back toward the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“We are playing catch up,” he said, which is why Magens needs day and transient use moorings.

Currently a smattering of moorings positioned at the far eastern end of the beach are for the use of a small number of local fishermen. They create little traffic and only three or four small skiffs usually occupy them.

Oriol said the V.I. Professional Charter Association was “keen on” being able to off-load charter boat guests at Magens, something that has yet to happen at the mile-long beach that is both the islands largest natural tourist draw and St. Thomas’s only designated nature preserve.

Oriol said the business people have to gear their water tours to the cruise ship passengers, making sure they can bring them to places that already have restaurants, bathrooms and other commercial operations in place. He said the north side beaches, including Hull Bay, which is the next bay to the west from Magens, are naturals for the tours.

“They pick them up at 7:30 and are done by 3,” he said.

In general, all in attendance agreed moorings beat anchors.

“I’m for moorings,” said environmentalist Dalma Simon. “Moorings are important for the environment.”

Many in attendance expressed concern for the sea grasses, a haven for turtles, that are affected by anchors being dropped into the fragile habitat.

This is important because with or without moorings, there is nothing to prohibit the day boaters from anchoring outside the swim zone and ferrying passengers or letting them swim into the beach. Under the V.I. Open Shoreline Act, no one can be prohibited from accessing any beach in the U.S. Virgin Islands from the water side.

On a busy cruise ship day, Magens Bay welcomes as many as 3,000 guests arriving via safari buses, vans and taxis to its shore, but it has never been home to day charter boats, does not allow jet skis to launch from the beach and has very little area designated for boat access to or from the beach. The largest part of the inner bay is a designated swim area. It is an offense punishable by a fine for water craft of any kind to operate inside that buoyed demarcation.

As a restricted area under V.I. code, it is also unlawful for motorized vessels to operate parallel to the beach at more that six knots – approximately seven mph – Oriol confirmed.

If the charter boat operators were to have their wishes granted from the semi-autonomous authority, they would be able to back their boats into the beach stern-to unload their passengers, go back to their mooring and then come back and reload the passengers, again stern facing the beach.

Oriol was clear, however, the vessels would be limited to 65 feet, carrying between six to eight passengers only.



WATCH: Migrants Land Boat on California Beach 100 Miles from Border - Breitbart News

Residents of a California beach community witnessed a surprising incident as a small boat packed with illegal aliens made landfall. The migrants made their way to the beach resort located about 100 miles from the Mexican border in a small panga boat.

Officials with the Laguna Beach Police Department tweeted a video showing the boat making landfall early Thursday morning and 13 illegal aliens running on shore. Police say that U.S. Border Patrol agents responded quickly and took custody of seven of the migrants and two suspected human smugglers who were allegedly waiting to pick up the migrants, the Orange County Register reported .

A short time later, police found five more men hiding in the bushes and placed them in custody.

U.S. Border Patrol Agent Vincent Pirro told the local newspaper that of the two smugglers, one was a U.S. citizen and the other, an illegal alien on a “non-immigrant visa overstay.”

Officials said the panga boat is designed to carry up to 15 passengers. The video above shows 13 men running away from the boat and Border Patrol agents found 13 life vests, the Register reported. The agents seized the boat and nine gas cans.

Pirro said these types of long journeys are not that uncommon for human smuggling operations. “We see them leave from Ensenada a lot. They go around the Coronado Islands and north. They’ve gone as far as Half Moon Bay,” the agent explained.

The Register reported there have been 433 illegal aliens arrested 433 migrants illegally entering the U.S. via panga boats in the San Diego Sector since November 1, 2017. Pirro explained that the illegal aliens pay the smugglers between $13,000 and $17,000 for the boat ride to the U.S. Pirro said that makes it unlikely that the passengers were connected to the migrant caravan.

At least four of the men arrested were Mexican nationals and three others were Chinese, Pirro told the newspaper. The seven migrants face federal charges for immigration violations. The two men found waiting to pick up the migrants will be charged with human smuggling.


Weekend getaway: Bodega Bay foodie adventures - Santa Cruz Sentinel

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The Coastal Miwok must have been awestruck as they watched Spanish Captain Juan Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra drop anchor in their traditional fishing grounds in 1775, and name the “newly discovered” estuary harbor after himself. But it wasn’t until Alfred Hitchcock set his 1963 classic, “The Birds,” in the towns of Bodega and Bodega Bay that this quiet fishing port caught the world’s attention.

Since then, Bodega Bay has become a full-on day-trip destination for Northern Californians in search of dramatic scenery, expansive beaches and coastal-village vibe. How popular is it? No specific number of visitors has been tallied, but here’s an indicator: Sonoma County tourism is a $21 billion industry, says the Sonoma County Tourism Bureau. That’s a lot of wine and fried fish.

Best advice: Hit the road early and bring an ice chest. You’ll want to stroll Doran Beach, picnic above the cliffs at Bodega Head, hike along the coastal Kortum Trail and, if you’re there on a Friday, learn something new on a free tour of the Bodega Marine Lab , which is part of the UC Davis Coastal and Marine Sciences Institute.

If you and yours plan to extend your day trip into an overnighter (or longer), Bodega Bay Escapes specializes in rental homes from plain to fancy. If it’s a luxury-hotel experience you’re after, one choice is the Bodega Bay Lodge . And if roughing it is more your style, you can choose your comfort level at various camps .

The best time to visit is winter and spring, when the weather is delightfully moody and the summer crowds are a mere memory. Of course, dining joins sightseeing on any agenda, and we have a tableful of suggestions for that.

En route to Bodega Bay, make your first stop at Petaluma’s Della Fattoria Bakery, named one of the “Top 10 Best Bread Bakeries in America” by Bon Appetit magazine. The bakery opened a classy bistro next door in March, but you may not get past the 30 or so baked goods in the original café, where the must-haves include pecan sticky buns, croissants and loaves of hand-shaped breads — 14 of ’em — baked in wood-fired brick ovens. Don’t miss the Meyer lemon-rosemary and black currant-walnut loaves.

Leaving Petaluma, head for the coast, where curvy, hilly Highway 1 meanders through fields and forests to the outpost of Valley Ford, population 147. You’ll find owner Dennis Becker inside his weathered Valley Ford Market, selling hickory-smoked wild salmon, housemade sausages and beef jerky.

This may be a small town, but a bronze plaque next to the post office commemorates Valley Ford as a Sonoma County Historic Landmark. It’s because pop artist Christo’s 24½-mile long, 18-foot high “Running Fence” passed through town in 1976.

Seafood is Bodega Bay’s main claim to fame, and the town takes its clam chowder so seriously that it has hosted a professionally-juried Chowder Day festival on the last Saturday in January for 15 years. It’s a competition among local restaurants, judged by the pros, but there’s a people’s choice vote, too.

The Bluewater Bistro at The Links at Bodega Harbour, a public golf course, took first place this year and has placed in the top three in years past. Its chowder is rich, silky and a touch briny, with plenty of clam bites, but the kitchen won’t give up its secret ingredient. Order a bowl at the upstairs bar — look for the table by the fireplace — and match it with beer-battered, deep-fried local rock cod.

For more travel coverage from the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond follow us on Flipboard.

A mile or so farther on is the town of Bodega Bay. You’ll know you’ve arrived when you see a flotilla of fishing boats bobbing together in the marinas.

Pull into Tides Wharf for a close-up, and be sure to cruise the fish market inside the Tides Wharf Restaurant,...



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Choosing a new fishing boat is no easy task; whether you’re attracted to center consoles, you like casting from bay boats, or you need the protection provided by a boat with a cuddy cabin, there are countless variables to take into account.Would you choose stability over wave-handling, or is the opposite true?

Those Versatile Bay Boats | Salt Water Sportsman

The bay boat is an extremely versatile design, capable of running the flats and handling open coastal waters. Many of them look a lot like flats skiffs, but usually sport a higher freeboard and a slightly deeper vee to handle choppy seas.

Top Bay Boats | Salt Water Sportsman

Top Bay Boats. Follow this ongoing collection of the top bay boats in no particular order. By SWS Staff Updated: Mar 21st, 2018 at 12:30pm. Comments. No single boat design, except perhaps the center console, has had as much impact on our fishing as the bay boat. We decided to round up some of the best bay boats out there.

Top Center Console Inshore Fishing Boats | Sport Fishing ...

25 of the Top Inshore Center Consoles. ... surf, there’s an inshore/nearshore center console to meet your needs. Here, to help you pick out your next fishing boat, is a small sample of the top models that have earned the respect of serious anglers. ... our NauticBay line of bay boats has been greatly received by the avid tournament and ...

Bay or Flats Boats | Discover Boating

Bay boats are similar in concept, just with deeper bottoms, or “hulls”, and slightly higher sides to provide a smoother, safer ride in rougher coastal waters. Both types of boats typically feature one or more livewells, used primarily to keep live bait.