This letter from Bert Reeves of Gibsons B.C. includes a shot of his magnificent
waterfront view with him and his boat heading out for a row. He also shows
how he cleverly uses an aluminum ladder and a rope block tackle system
to haul or launch his Whitehall Spirit over his seawall. In regard to mirrors
some owners have adapted water ski rear view mirrors to forward view types
by mounting them on the gunnels a few inches aft of the oarlock position.
It is almost one year ago that I launched
my Whitehall Spirit 14 (March 23, 2002). I rowed today and
thought you might like to know how much I have enjoyed the
boat. There have been lots of favourable comments from others,
one of the best being from a power boater who hailed me and
asked what made the thing go so fast. The only things that
interfere with rowing are: tides, wind, skiing, swimming,
cycling and family obligations. I have not made any long
journeys yet but regularly row a few miles to Granthams, Keats
Island and around to Gower Point.
The beach haulers work very well on our
pebble beach. It is a bit gritty so there is some scratching
going on. My launching and retrieval apparatus is powered by 1:
4 block and tackle which is anchored by a heavy chain pinned
into the concrete stairs about 12 feet above the level of the
boat. This aligns the pull quite nicely as the keel comes over
the wall. The 10’ x15” ladder protected by ABS pipe
works well as a slide (14’ would be better). A 14’
strip of outdoor carpet runner clipped to the end of the ladder
makes for a soft landing on the launch, helping to protect the
point of the skeg which seems to take a bit of a beating.
The main deficiency of my boat is the
lack of a rear view mirror (or should I say forward view). It
would be very helpful, particularly around high traffic areas
like Gibsons Harbour. Is such a thing available in marine
Enclosed are a few photos showing the
launching and retrieval system.
I hope that lots of boats are floating
out of your premises.
Bert Reeves kindly sent in this poem inspired by his Whitehall.
Happy New Year Harold and Marie:
No rowing today due to snow! It is the 7th anniversary, almost, of owning my Spirit 14. Two years ago I moved it to Smitty's Marina, where it sits on a raft with rollers and a launching ramp. It goes into the water and comesout in about 10 minutes each way.
It is a great arrangement. I rowed 57 times in 2008 and would have done more were it not for weather, skiing, swimming and Hawaii.
I hope that you are both well and selling lots of these great boats.