One of the big unknowns for us this summer was what food (and water) would be available in the Broughton Archipelago. We decided early that we would not do a run to the mainland like many do, but instead, support local marinas and enjoy whatever was available. Our various cruising guides listed if there was a store, but I wish I had had some additional information. So, here’s what we found this summer (June 15 - Aug 20, 2019).
Side note: A big part of the marinas here are happy hours, so I included how each worked. The best advice I got, if you plan to do happy-hours, was to pick something easy to prepare that you can bring with you (like brownie mix) and make the same thing for any happy-hour you go to. I didn’t do that coming up, but I did going home and it was so much easier!
Lagoon cove - no food store, but Ice cream bars, snacks, soda, coffee and drink ice!
Water is good
Prawn happy hour is great, bring a good appetizer to share and a plate, it’s worth it!
If you’re lucky, one of the owners, Kelley, bakes the best sourdough bread for happy hour.
Kwatsi Bay - no food store. Honey and jam in gift shop
Best water in the area, only ‘clean’ source
Casual happy hour with owners on the dock. Mostly light snacks are brought. Some nights they do a pot-luck, so ask.
Pierre’s Echo Bay - Food store! (closes at 4:00)
Water ok, but not ‘sanitized’, however, we used this with no problems.
Before July 1
Canned and dry goods only
Shelf life milk-Evaporated milk
Many gluten free things
After July 1 - best for:
Frozen meats - very good!
Best place for fresh fruits, cherries, nectarines, tomatoes, peaches, blueberries
Some veggies - green onion, lettuce
Dairy - Cheddar cheese, Goat cheese, Yogurt, Butter, Milk
Frozen bread - bagels, English muffins, garlic bread
Ice for food storage, none for drinking
Note: group dinner are well known and excellent, but you need a big plate here!
No organized happy-hour
Sullivan Bay - Food store and only alcohol in the area
No potable water, ever
Drink ice available
Before July 1
Small selection of basics, eggs, butter, milk and canned/dry goods
After July 1
Fresh veggies - celery, onions, broccoli, avocado, tomato, zucchini, peppers, garlic, ginger, potatoes
Some fruit - apples, cherries, oranges
Dairy - cream, milk, sour cream, cream cheese, good eggs
Lunch meat, some frozen meats
Note: there is a restaurant some nights, so food in the store reflects what a restaurant would get, all veggies/fruits etc. are in bulk. Also note that if you do dinner at the restaurant, it’s one choice and you are required to sit with whomever they place you with at a table for 4. They do encourage boaters to meet up for a 5:00 happy hour, but it’s not hosted in any way.
And last, a short list of things that we thought of as basics but found were always in short supply or nonexistent no matter the marina: Toilet paper, paper plates, decaf coffee, regular coffee (that wasn’t Folgers), dry creamer, dried fruit like raisins, spices, oatmeal, juice, chocolate chips, sugar, white rice, and perhaps most surprising to us, fishing gear - almost nothing!
I hope this list helps other who go, it was a wonderful place to explore. Happy sailing one and all!