Moving a Seattle based boat to Midwest

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Moving a Seattle based boat to Midwest

Postby Jerry rogers » Fri Jan 06, 2012 7:08 am

Greetings all
We are in search of our loop boat so that we may share in the adventure. Have located an interesting candidate located in Seattle. Problem is, I am in Kentucky. I do not have the time or expertise to bring this boat through the Panama Canal or over the Northwest Passage so here are my questions:
How far east can I bring a boat with a 4' draft on the Columbia River?
Is it feasible/possible to truck a 44' with a 14' beam from that point on the Columbia to a point on the Missouri River? I suspect the Rockies might be a bit of a nuisance.
Is there a Marina that has the capability to pull this boat from the water at that point on the Columbia?
Can I get it back in the water on the Missouri?
It appears to be a beautiful boat (Stella Maris on Yachtworld) and it is certainly priced right if in good shape hence the post.
I have no idea how realistic this might be so please, be gentle in your response.
Many thanks
Jerry Rogers
Jerry rogers
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Dec 07, 2011 12:11 pm

Re: Moving a Seattle based boat to Midwest

Postby Georgs » Sat Jan 07, 2012 3:48 am

Here's what Jonathan Olenick recommends:

Durring the winter it might be better to have a skipper take her to LA or Long Beach and then truck via interstate 10 either to gulf coast Texas ( as we did with our Nordic Tug 37) or to Florida or even as far north as Norfolk VA.
Georgs Kolesnikovs
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Re: Moving a Seattle based boat to Midwest

Postby Georgs » Sun Jan 08, 2012 12:45 pm

Lots of other recommendations to pass on:

I don't know about the Missouri River and it's depths. You can navigate the Columbia to the Snake and go as far as Lewiston Idaho. Not sure about pull out facilities due to the fact there are no many big boats up the river that far. It is a long way however. Portland is 110 miles from the mouth of the columbia and Lewiston 2-3 hundred more. Great trip though. I've been up the river as far as the John Day (three days cruise) in my boat.

The trip down the west coast of Washington can be rather nasty. I've experienced this as well.

I would recommend calling a transport company called NORGARD - KIRKPATRICK Boat Hauling, 503 543-8272. They are based in Scappose Oregon. I'm not sure what sizes they can handle but it's a good place to start.

I bought my boat in Seattle took it down to Olympia and trucked it to the Columbia. This only took a couple of hours to do. The problem with "bigger" boats is the height. You need to get under the overpasses. I couldn't do this so they took a back road route and held up power lines. You would not want to do this cross country. You might need to pull the flying bridge and put it on the deck. Norguard can tell you all this stuff.

If you decide to do any of this you should consider keeping the boat in the Northwest for a season and heading to BC. It's some of the best cruising anywhere. You remember Roche Harbor where we photographed San Souci.

I too want to do the great loop someday. You might get a better deal on a boat in Florida.


We have moved our 48 Tolly from Sturgeon Bay to Seattle and then back to St. Louis all in one year. So although I am not an expert, I have the scars and the cost to show for it, so I was a bit pessimistic.

I looked at the Jerry's boat on Yachtworld and it is a beauty. What a good loop boat! So I think, Jerry- do it! It does not have a lot of air draft, the radar arch appears easy to remove along with the dodger and bimini, and air draft is the primary problem of shipping this size of boat. Associated Boat transport is based out of Bellingham, is a fairly small outfit of experienced boat movers and would be my first choice. 14 wide is not a huge problem, the trucker has to get permits anyway oveer 12 wide. I would move the boat to Olympia, use the travellift there, the truck access is good and the people at the Olympia city marina are used to getting boats on a truck. Ship the boat to St Louis to Bloch Marine, with a Travel lift and good truck access, and plop it into the Mississippi. Simple trip over to Alton, less than 15 miles, commission her and head to Kentucky lakes.

The comparitive low cost of buying this excellent boat will allow one to truck, the trucking cost should be around $12,000 and the decommission and re-commission will cost another $3000, depending on how much work you can do yourself.

ORINOCO lying Mississippi River at Alton

I don't know the specific answer to your question about the Columbia
River. However, we saw numerous large vessels being trucked east
across I-8 from San Diego to ( I presume) Texas or possibly Florida.
Land is pretty flat down there.

Is she the Dutch built 'Stella Maris"? Looks like a great boat and a good price.

Good Luck!

David Evans
N-43#10"Mary Pearl"
Keyport, WA

How tall is your boat from keel to top-top? A number of these boats have the ability to fold down windshields to reduce height for passing under canal bridges or in your case highway bridges. I looked on the web for the one in Seattle and it looks like it has an arch. If the arch can be removed and the windshield folded or removed for transit, it may open up some options for transit.

The scope of the trip from Seattle should be considered as well. Timing is everything on the passage down the Washington coast. More on that later.....Portland is 100 miles from the coast and Umatilla, Oregon is about 170 miles from Portland and the last place you may be able to retrieve a boat on a hydraulic lift trailer and be on I-84, the only real east/west highway in northern Oregon. There are no commercial boatyards that I am aware of east of the Portland. So, preparing ing the boat for transit could an issue, unless all you had to do is drop the windshield and lower the arch and haul away, which could be done anywhere.


I can't speak to the Columbia, but, you'll have major fuel issues (none
available) on the Missouri river. Its navigable down from Sioux City Iowa.
I personally think a boat should be moved on her bottom, not by truck, but
considering where it is and where you want to be I agree with the previous
posts assessment as to trucking it the southern route to TX coast. I would
just truck it the entire way though. If its going to be hauled and put on a
trailer anyway the cost of trucking it per mile is less than moving it on
the water.

Of course, if you're up for a life event... Lets just move her through the
canal :)


Part of your question: on the Columbia, the Tri-Cities area would likely be
the most east point. (Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland.) The Columbia is
navigitable several miles further with local knowledge, but the charts
'magically' stop calling out river features once you get to the Hanford
region :-) (Plus, there is not really any facilities beyond that to speak
of - other than atomic rabbits and such..)

One could also continue further up the Snake to the Lewiston ID area, that
is a great trip! However, the Tri-Cities area is located on a major freeway
while the Lewiston area does not really have good highway access over the
Rockies. (the I90 over the Rockies is now an easy pass to make - no worries

I am not aware of any small boat yards in the areas; perhaps someone else
has more insight. Tidewater Tugs has a major facility at Lewiston ID that
might be able to assist, and of course there are many boat ramps and one
could use a hydraulic trailer easily at one of them.

Having said that, I would think travel directly from the Seattle area might
be less costly overall, and a whole lot less hassle compared to coming
around down to the Columbia. Unless one wanted to take some time and enjoy
the craft in the Seattle / Puget Sound area for a year and then perhaps
cruise up the Columbia /Snake (wonderful trip BTW, we did it last year)!

As to size, Viking Star is about the same size as described. We had her
trucked down from Seattle to the Portland OR area with no real problems.
Though she did need a full grouping of pilot cars (extra cost!!), and the
driver said that size was perhaps the largest practical to move for us
simple mortals. He also shared the size required extra planning and permits
from the governments, including DETAILED travel plans - one risk was that if
something happened the whole trip would be put on hold until the permits
could be re-filed... That risk might be an issue for longer travel.

Best of Luck, perhaps a yacht broker in the PNW would be able to help with
ideas for transporting boats. (Train?) Every once and a while I run across
a craft that was brought over from the Great Lakes area , though IIRC they
were more in the mid 30' range.

Viking Star
45' Ed Monk Sr. / McQueen
Currently located in Friday Harbor, WA

Once you get past Portland on the Columbia R. yards become fewer and farther
between (Active Captain doesn't show any) but the real problem is expense.
If the goal is to save shipping expenses, the cost of taking the boat down
the WA coast, across the bar and up the Columbia far outweighs shipping
expense hoped to be saved. If the goal is to get a taste of boating in the
NW the Seattle to Portland trip can be wonderful with the right weather

Makin Do, PT-38
Brownsville, WA

If he is going to truck it, why not just take it all the way to Kentucky. From what I have read the Missouri River is barely navigable. I would think several hundred more miles on the truck would not add greatly to the cost.

David Sorenson

Take it from a longtime boater.
Fined a boat on the East coast.
Hauling ,trucking and launching can add up to a lot of money.
There a lot of boats that will fit your needs on the market and in position to do the Great loop.

Rene Dupuis
Georgs Kolesnikovs
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