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Old 07-07-2019, 03:27 PM   #1
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Vancouver Island

We try to do a big trip every other year . Thinking about a 2020 trip to Vancouver Island in our 31 ft RV and four door Jeep in tow. We are coming from Rhode Island.

My concern and question is about ferries. What would you suggest as the best ferry system to get there. Iíve read about Washington State Ferry System and BC ferries. It doesnít matter a whole lot where we depart from as we would be on the road about three months and also want to visit Oregon, Washington and BC. I guess Iím more interested in where would be the least hassle traffic wise and affordable area to depart from. Do not want to sleep on the ferry, just a round trip crossing. Want to see some of the inside passage. Been to Alaska twice, donít need to see it again. Any suggestions? As I said, in the thinking stages.

Thanks you.
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Old 07-07-2019, 03:48 PM   #2
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Don't make traffic a consideration. You, not they, are going to be the traffic problem. There's only a couple of ways to cross the water, so your choices are mainly to take it or leave it. And remember -- if you miss this boat, there's another one coming. So relax. Vancouver traffic radio is superb. They have at least one AM station that gives nothing but traffic and ferry updates, including how full the boats are. They really have their stuff together on the commute thing! You'll be able to trim your route surgically once you get close to the metro areas. The Vancouver Island ferries are very short routes compared to Alaska -- minutes and hours v days. It's not the grand adventure of the Alaska routes; you won't be overnighting aboard.

For the direction you're coming and what you want to do, I'd suggest entering Canada somewhere east of Vancouver -- like Manatoba, maybe -- and take Canada 1. Ferry to the island from the east. Leave the island from Victoria, headed south across the Juan de Fuca strait to Pt. Angeles, WA. Then do the 101 around the Olympic Pen and head down the coast to Oregon on 101 or 105 (the beach road -- when there).
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Old 07-07-2019, 04:00 PM   #3
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Ferry will not be cheap. Talked to one person who lived on the island and he said it was something like $700 one way.
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Old 07-07-2019, 04:19 PM   #4
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PA-Victoria ferry: https://www.cohoferry.com/

BC Ferries: https://www.bcferries.com/

Rates can be found at both websites, also schedules, regulations, reservations, etc. It sounds like a great trip, I hope I can do it someday too.
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Old 07-07-2019, 04:49 PM   #5
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The Washington State ferry out of Anacortes may be the least traffic and least expensive, but any of them will be able to accommodate you. None of them require overnight accomodations.

WSF Anacortes to Sidney requires a reservation and makes one or two trips a day depending on the season (zero during the winter months). There a places to camp within a few miles of the terminal.
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Old 07-07-2019, 04:59 PM   #6
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Inside passage ? That's a route from the North end of Vancouver Island up the coast to Prince Rupert; 274 nautical miles , a night on route ; if memory serves; and $$$$

BC Ferries, to Vancouver Island , you can save around $100 CD , by disconnecting your toad, and having it driven on separately, if you have a second driver. Don't know if the same applies to the Coho ( Blackball ferry line ) or WSF.

EDIT: BTW , Vancouver Island at 12,000+ square miles , is larger than 8 of the states in the USA ; and BC is twice the size of California with 1/10 the population.
Don't let the fact that road atlases put BC and AB on the same pages of the book fool you about the size and travel times .
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Old 07-08-2019, 05:26 PM   #7
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Thanks all for the helpful info!
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