Smugglers Cove stop over while heading north
Smugglers Cove feels like you are entering another world, with its small connecting rocky bays and picturesque weathered shack perched on a rock island.
This year on our migration North to Desolation Sound we chose to stop over in this favourite Marine Park. We left Montague harbour early, transited Porlier Pass with a quick stop for Lucy at Dionisio point, and motored across a glassy calm strait past Mary Island Lighthouse to Smugglers Cove.
Located on the Sunshine Coast at the north end of Welcome Pass, across from Thormanby Island, and close to popular Secret Cove. For cruisers crossing from Vancouver Island Smugglers Cove our Secret Cove make a great destination. It would also be a nice day sail from Vancouver. Close by Secret Cove can easily be visited by dinghy, and has a great marina with easy long fuel dock, and well stocked store including ice cream and beer!
The entrance to Smugglers Cove is narrow and deep, and there are many stern tie points to choose from. I think it is important to stern tie and keep space available for other boaters. This bay is also best to arrive and anchor in daylight as it is pretty tight for a larger boat. If you were arriving late I would choose to anchor in Secret Cove instead, only a few minutes away.
Smugglers Cove is a Provincial marine park with a large connected land area that has many trails and boardwalks through the Forest. I enjoyed viewing the succulents and wildflowers along the shoreline.
Secret Cove is also interesting to explore with many bays and inlets. We have really appreciated the very protected RVan outstation Dock deep inside Secret Cove when we have cruised to Desolation Sound in winter. The entry to the bay with the RVan dock feels very tight with many private docks and rock with an imposing marker. This bay is extremely protected and has space to anchor with a mud bottom.
We only spent one night at Smugglers Cove this time, and looked forward to a great forecast of southerly wind the next day to continue north.
For more info and history about Smugglers Cove, have a look at the BC Parks website.