News from the North-Crossing into Canada

Now that Canada is allowing recreational boaters to clear customs and enter Canada, have you wondered what the process entails? Sam and Bill Stone did the research, took “the test,” and successfully entered Canada late this summer. Sam generously documented the process in the following helpful article. It is current as of the date of this posting.

Border Crossing Process by Sam Stone

We still have the challenge of getting into Canada, whether by plane, car or for most of us by boating. To make that easier for you, if you decide to go tomorrow, here is what you will need to prepare in advance.

  • 1. Get vaccinated and have your original record(s) with you when you travel. Not only will you add those to the ArriveCan app in advance, but you will need to have the originals with you to enter any restaurant or show a customs agent if they request. Canadians have a QR code on their original vaccination paper document(s) and BC has created an app specifically for using that QR code for BC residents.

2. Get a Covid PCR test (this is not the same as an antigen test) within 72 hours of either takeoff if flying or checking in at customs. The test requires that you to go to certain specific testing locations in your county. You can see locations at the site below, but do note that some locations ONLY offer the antigen test, others only take symptomatic or ill patients, and many require an appointment. You can look up testing sites here, but again be sure to determine if the site will do travel testing. Results are usually back in 24-48 hours. Ours were back in less than 24 hours, and we went to the Bellingham airport location. .

3. Determine which Canadian ports of entry are still allowing boater check-in. For example, Poet’s Cove and Montegue are closed for entry, however you can go to Van Isle or Sidney to check in if that’s on your way north. You can also look at this site and sort based on your entry point. .

4. Download and fill out the information in the ArriveCan app. which requires all information be entered and transmitted, prior to your arrival. The app is available on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. The ArriveCAN iPhone app is compatible with any iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad running iOS 12.0 or later. On Android, the app requires Android version 6.0 or newer.

You will be asked about:

Covid symptoms, if any.
Your vaccination status and which brand you received
Your Covid test which is currently needed within 72 hours of entry
Your boat’s registration #, hull number and other specific data for your boat
The same personal information you gave previously when traveling to Canada
Your Port of Entry, and make sure this is where you want to go. Again, not all entry points are open, thus a reduced alphabetical listing in the app from which you can select the correct location.
A quarantine plan if they require you to quarantine for 7 to 14 days
Nexus or passport information
Last, but not least, a copy of your vaccination card. This is quite simple as the app allows you to hover over it with your phone or iPad, just as you would if submitting a check for deposit. The camera will focus and do the work for you.

If you don’t have 100% of the information the first time, the app allows you to save your information, and come back later to finish entering. You do need to submit the information on the app as soon as you have it all loaded, and prior to entry into Canada

5. When arriving, don’t expect to see a customs agent on the dock. You will need to use the phone on the customs dock (not your personal cell) to call an 800# listed on the phone station. Be prepared to wait! Holding on the phone for up to an hour was not unusual just after Labor Day, so dress for the weather, grab a folding chair and a bottle of water. And above all DON’T hang up or you will lose your place in line on the phone.
They will ask some of the usual questions about:
• Where are you going, how long will you be in Canada, and the purpose of your trip.
• Do you have any guns and how much money are you bringing in.
• They will remind you that marijuana, THC and CBD are illegal to bring to Canada and ask if you have any.
• Specific food items don’t seem to be a problem any longer, as long as all the food you bring is for your personal consumption and not for resale.
• It is recommended that you leave meat and other previously forbidden food products in their original containers in case you do get inspected.
• There were no questions about pets, though you should have a current rabies certificate or other documentation you previously supplied.

It has been rumored that sometime in December, Canada will no longer require the PCR test within 72 hours of travel. Time will tell if that becomes their new standard.

Commodore’s Corner – September 2021

Greetings from Sucia Island and the China caves overlooking Shallow Bay.  Carole and I just returned from our last long cruise for the season. I hope you all were able to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather and wonderful Pacific Northwest waters in your tugs!

The mini rendezvous at Swantown in Olympia was a great success!  We had 14 boats represented.  A big thanks and shout out to Denise and Russ Nichols for organizing the event. Also to all those others who volunteered to help during the three days!

We already have tentative plans to hold at least one additional mini rendezvous next year. If we can get volunteers to assist in others, we will certainly look forward to holding several in addition to the large rendezvous planned for Sydney in early June.

Jeff Gleckler from Seattle Yachts has been appointed the brand manager of Nordic Tug‘s for Seattle Yachts. Many of you know Jeff from dealing with him in previous Rendezvous and/or purchasing or selling your boats. He is a great resource and will be a helpful and friendly face to keep us connected with both the factory and Seattle Yachts, a major sponsor of Panntoa.

We have now completed a couple of Board Member transitions.
Mark Malnes has assumed responsibility for Membership.
Denise Nichols has taken Communications responsibilities from Mike Young.
A big welcome to both of them and thanks for volunteering! Also a great big thank you to Mike Young who has been an excellent Communications Director for the past two years! His insight and contributions were a great help.

Although fall is upon us, I know that most of us will still be looking for those weather windows to sneak out and use our tugs as often as we can. Fall is also a good time to review, repair and replenish what we have used over the past cruising season.

Stay safe and have an enjoyable Fall!

Gary White
PaNNTOA Commodore

PANNTOA Mini-Vous A Success!

Denise Nichols reports fourteen Nordic Tugs participated in this year’s mini-Vous held September 9-11 at Swantown Marina in Olympia. The weekend began with a Thursday night potluck where PANNTOA members got a chance to meet one another and indulge in great food. Throughout the Voux, folks chatted about everything from their favorite anchorages to tips and product recommendations for maintenance. Several folk gathered for an impromptu “Furuno Support group,” swapping tales of trials and tribulations.

Friday morning started with a gentle four mile walk around Capital Lake with stops for coffee at the local coffee roaster, Dancing Goats (coffee shop not petting zoo) and a visit to the Olympia Farmers Market.

Highlighting Friday afternoon was a Croquet Tournament that at times, got very competitive. Everyone drew for partners which resulted in fun, laughter and cheering. Seven teams competed for the top prize of wine and chocolate. But in the end, 1st place went to Carter Barns and Carol White. Mike Young and Barb Hartley came in a close second.

A barbecue Friday evening and a continental breakfast Saturday wrapped up the weekend festivities. Good boating stories were shared and lasting friendships made with the hopes of seeing each other on the waters soon. PANNTOA hopes to offer more mini-Vous’ in the future and would welcome volunteers to host these type of gatherings.

Check out the related forum post for more photos!

A ‘Voux into Fall … and sneak previews

The south sound promises beautiful late summer and early fall cruising…and there’s still time to use the PaNNTOA south sound mini rendezvous as a kick-off starting on September 9th. Crisp mornings, warm(ish) afternoons, and photo opps everywhere you look.

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And speaking of photography, after a greatly successful inaugural event last year, PaNNTOA will be hosting a second annual photography contest later this fall. Contest details to follow in a month or so.

Later this month, Commodore Gary White will post his quarterly note which will include a few changes around the clubhouse. Rumor has it the Commodore will also be making an appearance at the ‘Voux.

The ‘Voux is for all PaNNTOA members, not boats. If you’d like to join us at the potluck on Thursday, come on down. It you’d like to join in the activities or attend the PaNNTOA-sponsored BBQ on Friday, please contact Denise Nichols (502) 345-6940.

Still Room at the Voux …

Our September Southsound Mini Rendezvous is quickly approaching. Please reserve your slip at Swantown Marina in Olympia and join us (or don’t) in assorted fun activities (‘cause there’s nothing like a bunch of introverts and a couple of token extroverts getting social). You surely don’t want to miss our biggest (and only) event of the season/year/two years!

Miranda and the South Sound

It all started on May 28th. That’s when Miranda started her most recent trip to the South Sound at Port Townsend, just off of Admiralty Inlet. Miranda had never been to Port Hudson before and was excited to explore the waterfront and the town!

At that point however, she was still needing to wear her mask around others.

Port Ludlow followed, and was she excited to get outside and enjoy the scenery and short walks, a selfie with the totem pole and glance back toward July on the dock.

Things got more exciting as we moved on again to Kingston. Miranda spotted this lonely heron keeping an eye on his territory and the ferry as it came in…

Hard to believe the heron followed us to Poulsbo, but Miranda was convinced when she saw a relative of the previous heron. There was no talking her out of it.

As it turned out, she was in Poulsbo for National Donut Day, Friday June 4th, and what a great place to be when the infamous Poulsbo bakery is just up the street! She even shared her special “find” with Jeri & Dave Starrett on Orca Star seen behind her. But then she got restless, which is a problem for Miranda….


She tried to hook up with this sailor in Bremerton. Tried to sneak into his bag for the trip, but alas he sent her back to us on July. You see he was shipping out later that day on the submarine in the background…no mermaids allowed.

If you aren’t familiar with Miranda, she has quite a colorful past. You should look at her portfolio. She’s been to Alaska, the Broughton’s, the Intercoastal Waterway and all the way to Cuba. There have been a number of road trips too; places like Florida, California, Arizona and parts beyond. There are stories of police reports regarding disruption of the peace and other scandalous behavior.

Well, as the South Sound trip progressed, Miranda’s next destination was Dock Street Marina where she went frolicking at the Glass Museum with her previous caretakers, our PANNTOA Vice-Commodore & his wife,

Lindsey and Doug Ford – What a sweet reunion!


They warned us Miranda had a taste for excitement. That played out as we went to Bell Harbor Marina, downtown Seattle. Miranda just HAD to go for a ride on the “Great Wheel”. Since Neither Bill nor I had been before either, we figured that would be a nice option for the afternoon with Miranda.



One of the last stops before heading back home was Everett. Miranda got so excited when she saw the kites, some even looking like her sea creature friends. She spent most of the afternoon watching.

So, what is next for Miranda? Well while she did spend July 4th at Cap Sante Marina in Anacortes watching the fireworks, Miranda is looking for new hosts that will take her places she wants to revisit and new locations also.

If you are interested in hosting Miranda until the next Nordic Tug Rendezvous, please contact either Commodore Gary White at or Vice Commodore Doug Ford at and they will connect you. If we don’t hear from willing candidates, it’s possible she may just hit the road and surprise you at your front door. Hard to say.

Wishing you all safe boating and a great summer!

Bill & Sam Stone
July, NT 42110

Southsound Mini Rendezvous

Southsound Mini Rendezvous
Swantown Marina
Olympia WA
September 9 – 11, 2021

Now is your time to explore the Southsound and meet fellow PaNNTOA members during 3 fun-filled days in Olympia.

Dates: September 9 – 11, 2021 (Thursday – Saturday)

Location: Swantown Marina, Olympia, WA

Tentative Schedule:

Thursday – 4:00 pm Potluck. Bring your favorite dish to share with the group under the covered picnic area at the marina. Bring along your plate, utensils and BYOB.

Friday – 9:00 am Walk around Capital Lake. Join us for a nice gentle 4 mile walk to get the day started right. We will make a stop at Dancing Goat Espresso and the Farmers Market and then return to the marina around 11:00.

Friday – 10:00 – 3:00 Olympia Farmers Market. Enjoy a short walk on your own to the Olympia Farmers Market, explore the public docks or downtown Olympia, all within easy walking distance from the marina.

Friday – 2:00 pm Kayak trip to Priest Point Park. Launch your Kayak or dingy and join the group for this easy paddle adventure. If you don’t have a kayak, we may be able to borrow a few.

Friday – 2:00 pm Croquet Tournament. Has it been awhile since you’ve played croquet? No problem. We will draw for partners, teach you the game and have prizes for the winners.

Friday – 4:30 pm. Barbeque. Polish Dogs, chips and all the fixings provided by PaNNTOA. BYOB

Saturday – 9:00 am. Continental Breakfast on the docks provided by PaNNTOA.

Registration: We have reserved 20 slips for the rendezvous. You need to call Swantown Marina to reserve a slip at (360) 528-8049. There is no fee for the rendezvous. Be sure to tell Swantown that you are with PaNNTOA when you reserve a slip and pay you moorage fee. We are limiting participation to 20 boats, so don’t delay.

Questions, call Denise Nichols (520) 345-6940. See you in Olympia in the fall.

Factory Update In Photos by Commodore Gary White

I recently had a conversation with Dave Allen at the Nordic factory and he sent me pictures of the factory floor in full production. They are adding employees and are very busy. It’s nice to see the boats lining the production line.

There is a 44 that is just about complete and 3 40’s currently under construction. They have several others in queue.

2021 Annual Meeting Report

We just completed PaNNTOA’s 2021 Annual Meeting, enabling us to fulfill our few official responsibilities as members. Via our remote voting, we:

  • Re-elected our intrepid PaNNTOA officers for 2021-2022:
    • Gary White, Commodore
    • Doug Ford, Vice Commodore/Secretary
    • Mike Russell, Rear Commodore/Treasurer
  • Approved the 2021 Financial Reports and the Minutes of our 2020 (Virtual) Annual Meeting. (But you know, we’ll have to stop meeting like this!)

38 PaNNTOA members and joint memberships participated – nearly a third of our membership and almost as many as have sometimes voted in our Vous-style in-person annual meetings. The voting was unanimous in favor of the three propositions, so we averted a mutiny again this year. Thanks to all who weighed in.

Now it’s time for some great cruising, while we “will” the Canada-US border to reopen for the boating we all feel is essential – see you on the water!