A Cruising Sailor's Best of Lake Huron's North Channel: Part 3

The North Channel's Best Marinas (Part 3 of 5)
The North Channel is famous for its’ many beautiful, secluded anchorages, but not necessasarily its’ local marinas. With a shorter cruising season than most places, North Channel marinas are likely subjected to comparatively little income from transient and seasonal boaters. This subsequently translates to smaller marinas that are often very dated and in need of upgrades and repairs. In any case, there are still some marinas in the North Channel that are a cut above.


Best Facilities: Sportsman’s Inn, Killarney
The Sportsman’s Inn in Killarney is newly renovated with top-notch floating docks made of wood. The shorepower and water hook-ups are also all new as of 2009. Shoreside there is an adequate ship’s store with basic boating supplies, snacks, and souvenirs. The showers and bathroom facilities are also new and very nice with tongue and groove pine walls and ceilings. The Inn itself features a nice dining room as well as a pub that serves typical pub fare with free WiFi Internet service. Fuel is available on the docks.



Best Service: Kagawong Marina, Kagawong
Kagawong’s municipal marina is small and due for updates. However, the dockage is adequate. What sets this marina apart is the polite and friendly service from the young staff. They greet boaters at the dock to help with lines and then promptly supply a welcome packet as soon as the boat is safely secured. Farquhar’s ice cream is even available on the dock in the marina office!




Best Chandlery: Gore Bay Marina, Gore Bay
Gore Bay Marina has very nice newer docks but their bathroom and shower facilities are due for an upgrade. However, the reason they make this list is for the superb chandlery available at the Canadian Yacht Charters (CYC) facility nestled in the marina basin. CYC offers nearly everything you could need to outfit your boat. They have all the North Channel charts available electronically and in paper format, a great selection of gear and several necessities for general boat maintenance. Lastly, the folks who run CYC are very knowledgeable about the North Channel and can help you fine-tune your itinerary as well as advice on weather conditions and local intricacies. You’d be hard pressed to find all of this available in any other single port in the North Channel.

Go here for Part 4 - The North Channel's Best Towns

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