Thursday 17 November 2022

BCO Coastal Gem: Port Neville

Central to all outdoors activities and wildlife, Port Neville is a picturesque 8-mile long mainland inlet that provides relatively well-protected areas for outdoor activities, including excellent salmon and halibut fishing, crabbing and prawning. Port Neville is situated in Johnstone Strait on a portion of the mainland of British Columbia that extends towards and is the closest geographically to Vancouver Island

Port Neville was once the site of a busy service community and until approx 2010 still had a post office. Like many of the waterways in this region it is also of significance to First Nations. Mariners appreciate the location during stormy weather as it provides a calm spot to hide.


The inlet and the waters of Johnstone Strait are known for their abundance of wildlife. There is a tremendous variety of mainland wildlife such as deer, cougars and bears including resident Grizzly bears who can be viewed seasonally at the head of the inlet as they feed on returning salmon. Marine wildlife includes sea lions, seals, dolphins and orca whales. 

Access to Vancouver Island is approximately 20 minutes away by boat - 9 miles southeast and across Johnstone Strait to Kelsey Bay, just north of Sayward. The Port Harvey Marine Resort, situated to the north of Port Neville between East and West Cracroft Islands, offers a general store, moorage and a licensed restaurant.

It's a Coastal Lifestyle ... Live It!

Thursday 3 November 2022

The Murkiness of Moorage in BC

 Over the years we have watched the rules around moorage in BC change drastically. From the documents and permissions required to the rules around building a dock, things rarely stay constant.

Moorage in BC is overseen by the Ministry of Forest, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. Their rules for private moorage for residential use are posted on their website. The gist of the rules as they stand now are that the Ministry allows for General Permission within certain guidelines. If your proposed dock and property fit within those guidelines, then you can follow the rules for General Permission and do not need to make an actual application to the Crown. 

If for any reason the General Permission guidelines do not fit, then you will need to apply to the Crown for what may be either Specific Permission or possibly a lease. Specific Permissions do not have a required renewal date, while leases/licenses of occupation do.

General Permission is only for docks which will be in front of the dock owner's personal property, with no other property in between. In other words, the dock owner must also be the upland owner. We have seen this cause issues in places where the Crown has retained a strip of land in front of properties in remote locations, originally intended to be a common walkway or access when the land was first surveyed but then never developed or used as such.

When it comes to requesting a transfer of an existing license of occupation or Specific Permission for moorage, patience is required. The Ministry can take years to complete this process and there are no guarantees when dealing with a third party. 

We would not be surprised if just as we all became comfortable and familiar with the current moorage rules they change again - seems to be the way. 

It's a Coastal Lifestyle ... Live It!