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To Sail Or Not To Sail – Ghost Lake, Alberta

Ghost Lake

Ghost Lake (Photo credit: Bods)

We last left off awaiting Lori’s post on the Glenmore reservoir Sailing School adventure.  As we awaited, I posted about our small road trip to Lake Newell.  Well, I guess we are still awaiting, so I will move on to our next investigation, Ghost Lake, near Cochrane, Alberta.

The lake is a reservoir on the Bow River, withing spitting distance of the Rockies.  We found it had spectacular views, a large community of boats, a sailing school and plenty of mooring availability.  In other words, it ticked most of our boxes.  What it is missing is the ability to go on week-long adventures, as in, no down lake areas to moor or anchor.  Very beautiful, only that this is all there is.  Scratch Ghost Lake.

Didn’t take to many decent pictures, but here is a video of crazy Canucks sailing Ghost Lake in November.

To Sail Or Not To Sail – Now What

As I noted in the earlier post, To Sail Or Not To Sail – What we Did On Our Summer Vacation, we have made the decision to explore the feasibility of retiring on a sailboat.  Having made that choice, we hit the first hurdle, which is simply put as “Now What”.

Our first step was to visit a sailing shop of some sort.  These are fairly rare when you live in an area without access to your typical sailing venues.  We are kind of landlocked with no big lakes close by, which is not really a good thing.  We did find a shop (Glenmore Sailboats) in Calgary and popped in for a visit.  Very friendly place and very willing to discuss sailing and live-aboard.  As first moves go, this turned out pretty well.  We asked questions, he answered.  We asked where people sailed in the area and he listed off 4 places.  These are Chestermere Lake, Glenmore Reservoir, Ghost Lake and Newell Lake, Alberta.  We now had some places to check out.  We asked about lessons and he recommended the sailing school at Glenmore Reservoir.  We asked about live-aboard and if people actually do what we were thinking.  The answer was a resounding yes.  He knew of many people who do it.  Some succeed, some don’t, which makes complete sense.  Preparation is key.

We left feeling pretty good about things, other than the answers creating even more questions.  I’ll leave that to later and concentrate on our next moves.  Lori arranged lessons on the reservoir through the Calgary Sailing School.  These were to start on June 1 and were on Lasers.  I’ll leave that experience for the next post.

Glenmore Reservoir in Calgary

Glenmore Reservoir in Calgary (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

At this point, we now know that we are going to seriously look at this, that it is doable as people do it all the time.  We immediately went into lala land and started casing out costs and boats.  I was shocked.  Check this one out.

Pretty impressive living space.  The pricing is amazing to.  Sailboats in this class can go for anywhere from $75-125,000.  The other part we looked at was living costs including maintenance.  This is where it gets hairy.  We have read that you can do this for anywhere between 500 and 5,000 a month.  Both ends I see as extreme and the most common number I see is 3,000.  The idea suddenly becomes a bit less crazy.

I’ll leave off here and take you to our adventures on Glenmore Reservoir on my next post.

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