October and November 2017: Illusion and crew leave Vancouver for Victoria, on Vancouver Island. Then start sailing south with visits to Newport (Oregon), Crescent City, San Francisco Bay, Monterey Bay, Morro Bay, Santa Barbara, Cabrillo Beach at Los Angeles harbor, and Newport Beach (California.)
September 2016 – September 2017: Apart from a couple of day sails with friends, Illusion spends the winter and spring at Milltown Marina. We anchor out around Vancouver during the summer, but don’t manage any sailing trips due to finishing refits and PhD!
Desolation Sound is the destination for late-summer explorations – Illusion anchors at Lasqueti Island, Comox, Savary Island, Tenedos Bay, Melanie Cove, Roscoe Bay (West Redonda Island), Grace Harbour, Hardy Island and Secret Cove. We start to get the hang of stern ties ashore!
July 2016: Illusion spends time at anchor in False Creek and by Jericho beach and finally starts to explore the BC coast and the stunning Salish sea. Our first family BC trip we anchored at Halket Bay on Gambier Island, Gibsons Landing on the Sunshine Coast and at Plumper Cove Provincial Marine Park on Keats Island.
June 2016: After a three year delay (engine repairs, shoulder injury and surgery for the captain, new baby, and bereavement all contributed!) Illusion finally makes the 20 day passage from Oahu, Hawaii, to Vancouver, BC.
September 2013: Arrives in Hawaii, having stopped at Rapa and Raivavae in the Australs, Tahiti, and Nuku Hiva in the Marquesas. From shortly before the arrival at Rapa to Hawaii, Illusion didn’t have a working engine, and mostly no auto-pilot. Since then she’s been in the marina, apart from a short sail to a new base in Honolulu.
May 29th 2013: Illusion finally sets off from New Zealand.
April-May 2013: The crew sail around the Hauraki Gulf, just off Auckland, exploring the islands, testing systems and continuing with repairs.
March 2013: Illusion sails (briefly) for first time in years – from her mooring in Auckland to Warkworth to Mahurangi Marinas, where Doug, Mikee, John, Deb and Janice set to work to fix her up and prepare for sailing.
Feb 2013: Change our minds after researching insurance options! Despite being very excited about the west Pacific route, we decide that a)it will be very expensive and b)we would have to rush through a lot of the first part of the route because of weather issues. As most of our crew are not experienced ocean sailors and we also want to have a fun trip, final plan is to do the mid Pacific route.
Dec 2012: Settle on the west Pacific route which will take us pretty much due north from New Zealand, west through the North Pacific to Japan, then roughly a great circle route to Vancouver, taking us past the Aleutians and maybe through the Alaskan Peninsula! Brrr!
Sept 2012: Decide to dedicate 2013 to bringing Illusion back to North America. Plans begin taking shape; research branches out!
April 2010: Disaster strikes! Illusion is boarded and ransacked while on her mooring near Auckland. Doug flies to her rescue and spends a few weeks cleaning her and repairing the damage. A few valuables are stolen, but otherwise no significant damage. Highlights the fact that Illusion is lonely: even with her occasional friendly visits, she needs more attention.
2006-2009: Leave Illusion and New Zealand to explore the world by airplane. Visit Germany, Spain, England, USA, and Mexico before settling in Vancouver, Canada. On a trip to Madrid in 2009, Doug meets Sara, who moves to Vancouver in 2010. They marry in 2011. Trips together to England, to visit her family, and Spain take over and plans for sailing are put on hold for a while.
2001-2006: Explore the Hauraki Gulf and anchorages slightly further away.
Southern Winter 2002: Doug, his partner and her two children spend two months exploring Fiji.
2001-2003: Doug, his partner at the time and her two small children live aboard to prepare for a trip to the tropics.
April-December 1999: Depart from Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, sailing into the South Pacific. Visit French Polynesia, Cook Islands, Niue, Tonga before heading down to New Zealand. Settle in Tauranga, Bay of Plenty.
December 1997 to April 1999: Cruise the Baja Peninsula and west coast of mainland Mexico.
1995-1997: Doug lives on-board. Preparing for a cruising lifestyle: adding systems and equipment to Illusion, closing down his business, and selling land-based possessions.
March 1995: Illusion is delivered by truck to Oakland, California, where Doug is living, from her factory in Southern California. Soon she begins sea trials on San Francisco Bay!