Back to the first page of this website         COSTS FOR A MOORING


 If you do not care about the environment or our salmon or other endangered sea life or if you don't care if the mooring is legal or not, then you do whatever you need to do and cross your fingers.    If you do care about our Salish Sea health and legality for various reason including the intrinsic and extrinsic value it adds to your property. then we would be happy to talk to you.  We generally follow these steps to install a legal mooring.
    We have experienced an unprecedented delay in getting permits through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the "Corps").  Fish and Wildlife and the Department of Natural Resources have been very timely.  The Corps by comparison is taking up to 8 months to do their part of the permitting process.  For 2012, we have no idea if this will improve or deteriorate further.  However, the bottom line is this:even if you signed a contract today (June 2012) the required surveys that must be performed and the applications that must be filed with, and permission awaited from,  Fish and Wildlife, US Corps of Engineers, the Tribes, National Marine Fisheries and the Dept. of Natural Resources will in all likelihood take months.  Moreover, the "window" that Fish and Wildlife uses for the installation of docks, moorings etc, is from July 16 through February 15.  Thus,  we cannot guarantee you a permanent mooring installation in 2012.
    However, that does not necessarily mean that we could not install a temporary mooring for you to use during the boating season 2012.  If you decide to proceed with the survey and application procedure, then the decision on the placement of a temporary mooring for you to use during the boating season would be after the completion of Step 8 (complete seabed flora fauna survey) at a total cost to you at that point of $1000 (assuming there were no land surveyors etc involved).
     We will install a temporary mooring complete with mooring ball for a one-time install/removal fee of $150 and $50/mo mooring lease.    We would put it in at the beginning of your boating season and remove it afterwards, observing the operation window of Fish and Wildlife.

    STEP ONE    Consultation with you to determine the type and size of boat that you would like to moor and for which parts of the year you would be mooring to be sure that our mooring will be adequate.  Be aware that all of the following applies only to non-commercial boats 30 feet or less in length.

    STEP TWO   Determine your ownership or permissive use-rights of the land adjoining the waterfront, tidelands and seabed that you propose to use for a mooring.  This is can be as simple as asking you.  We  often followup by examining  the appropriate county and state documents.

    STEP THREE   We conduct a preliminary surface assessment of your specific desired location for your mooring and the property lines** and survey marks**, if any, on your land. This involves determining if the depth of the water is suitable for a mooring (extremely deep or extremely shallow tidal waters present special challenges), how many other moorings already exist in the area, and how close they are to your proposed mooring location, and if  the possible lack or poor condition of survey marks on your  property will present special challenges for locating the proper spot for your mooring out on the water.
    **  Some additional and critical aspects of your waterfront lot that will impact both the final cost and the time it will take to install a permanent legal mooring: 

    In an ideal world, a potential customer will own a waterfront lot which is delineated by a concise legal description filed with the county which includes a  map showing the location of survey monuments on the sidelines and corners of the lot.  These survey monuments will either be exposed  on the ground and can be pointed out by the lot owner, or can be found relatively easily by the mooring contractors, and are sufficiently well exposed that the mooring contrctors can easily use them to control the survey  for the purpose of mooring placment.  For the sidelines that project toward the water, their compass bearings will be described in the legal description and shown on the map, and they will be essentially parallel, i.e. not be shown as converging to a common point somewhere out in the water. This scenario is the easiest and least expensive for the mooring contractors to deal with.
    However, in our experience with lots in unincorporated areas, it is often less than an ideal world and one or more of the following may be the case, in decreasing order of  desirability and ease of working with by the mooring contractors, and increasing  cost and involvement by the  customer.

     1.     The ideal situation exists except that one or more of the survey monuments, while believed to exist, are no longer visible.  In this situation, we will ask the customer to find and clear the brush away from the monuments sufficiently to allow  the monument to be used to control the mooring survey and placement.  The minimum  that we can work with are one monument on each of the two parallel lot sidelines having a known and established compass bearing.  This will enable us to establish a lot centerline  along which the mooring will be placed. 

     2.     An insufficient number of monuments can be located to establish clear boundaries to the property.  In this case the property owner can either have a professional surveyor relocate the monuments or  come to an agreement with their neighbors on each side such that the property sidelines are located to within no more than 2.5 feet either way.  In this case, the compass bearings of the sidelines must be shown in a legal description and/or a map of the lot and the sidelines are essentially parallel.  The mooring contractors can then establish a lot centerline to control our work.    In these situations, the mooring mooring contractors will place the permanent mooring in a location that may be up to ten feet off the true centerline.

      3.     No monuments exist and/or the sideline compass bearings are unknown or for some reason are uncertain or there is a serious dispute between the customer and one or both neighbors regarding the  property boundaries. The mooring contractors cannot operate under these circumstances and it will be up to the customer to resolve the issues before any further work is done on mooring placement.  Resolution of this problem will most likely will require the property owner to secure the services of a professional surveyor.

      4.     The sidelines of the lot  are not parallel and when projected out over the water appear to converge at about the point where a mooring would be placed. This situation would have to be evaluated very carefully but there is a good chance that we might not be able to place a mooring for the customer.

    STEP FOUR  We discuss this preliminary surface assessment with you.  In some rare cases, we may have to tell you that either because of tidal, depth and other-existing-moorings issues that we probably cannot design a mooring for you. Or perhaps your property corners and lines are so poorly documented that it would be difficult to control our on-the-water survey.   In most cases, we can design around these issues and come up with a plan that will satisfy you and the governmental agencies who issue the permits. 
            MAJOR CAVEAT:  We cannot guarantee at this or any other stage of the entire assessment and application process that the                             governmental agencies will finally issue the permits.  We will say that it is unusual for them to flat-out refuse a permit.  It is more common
            in the case of a disagreement for them to suggest an alternative, such as moving the mooring location this way or that or into deeper
            water etc.

    STEP FIVE    If the results of  STEP FOUR  are  encouraging,  we will propose that the project proceed to STEP SIX.

    STEP SIX       Our sub-contractor, Island Botanical Service does a preliminary scuba and/or submerged camera survey to determine the general location and extent of  eelgrass and macroalgae and roughly how far out from shore the mooring will need to be.
  Generally speaking, water depths of greater than around 25-30 feet measured at a very low tide do not support these species because they must have sunlight for their growth.  If you live in an area where 25-30 feet at a very low tide is a few hundred feet from your high tide line on your waterfront, that obviously would not pose a challenge for you to get to your mooring and boat.  However, if you live in an area with a very gently sloping bottom, this same depth at a very low tide might be a thousand feet or more out from the high tide shoreline.  That could be a problem for you if it would be difficult for you to go out that far to get to your boat.  This is a question that only you can answer after the preliminary survey.   And depending on the depth at a very low tide, it could be a problem for us to design a mooring that is both suitable for you and also satisfies all of the requisite govermental agencies.  Sometimes, this step is the go or no-go decision point for the project. 

    STEP SEVEN    If the data from STEP SIX show that there do not seem to be any insurmountable problems that would prevent the permitting of a mooring, 
and with your permission,  the next step is to conduct a sea bottom evaluation required for a permit from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.  We will not conduct STEP SEVEN  (unless you insist) if, in our opinion based on the preliminary survey and our past dealings with F & W, they would likely reject the mooring application.
    Assuming that everything looks like a "go" based on the preliminary survey in consultation with you,  Island Botanical Service
and Camano Sail and Power next conduct a formal eelgrass and macroalgae
seabed survey using two (or more if it is a particularly difficult or dangerous area) scuba divers and/or underwater cameras and our powerboat.   This seabed survey will determine the exact extent and growth pattern of any kelp or eelgrass beds present in the water where you propose to set the mooring. The DNR and Fish and Wildlife will not permit moorings that substantially endanger or degrade these two very important  fish habitats   Based on the survey,  a formal report is sent to  Fish and Wildlife for their approval.  Because Camano Sail and Power and any sub-contractors who work with us work closely  with Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife and the other agencies and are careful to follow their protocol for these surveys,  they are unlikely to object when we determine that an appropriate location is available for a mooring.

    STEP EIGHT   Camano Sail and Power and Island Botanical Service discuss the preliminary findings with you, provide you with an idea of the feasibiltiy and difficulty and provide you with a firm-price bid for the entire project, up to and including the placement of your permanent mooring.   At this point, if you agree to proceed, you initial the contract authorizing us to proced, and we request  a deposit of 50% of the firm bid price.
     It is also at the end of this step, when all of the results of the bottom survey are in, that we can advise you as to the feasibility of a temporary anchorage.  Paradoxically, a temporary setup requires even more care than the final permanent one because the sea bottom footprint of a temporary mooring is greater than that of our permanent moorings.  Thus, even great care must be used to avoid eelgrass or kelp.

     STEP NINE  The ninth step is to make a formal application to the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife using the data from the  habitat survey of STEP SEVEN.  Once we have their approval in hand, we apply to the Washington State Department of Natural Resources and the U S Army Corps of Engineers (and sometimes other involved agencies like counties) for a permit to install a mooring.  At this point, once the DNR and the Corps  have your application and the seabed survey in hand, they circulate it to other interested agencies and groups, including the Tribes.  This is often just a customary formality resulting in no objections.  But, depending on the location, someone like  the Tribes could make a request for some change in your plans.  This is uncommon but not unheard of.  Or, if your location presents unique problems and we have to propose a solution that is outside of the normally accepted protocol, the entire application may have to be considered by agency departments further up the food chain, who have the authority to bless projects outside of the normal protocol.  Needless to say, such "unusual" proposals will delay the project and could even result in a rejection of the proposed mooring.

    STEP TEN  You receive a lease agreement from the DNR (and perhaps documents from other interested agencies). The first mooring is generally free to a wterfront lot owner with a residence on the lot i.e. no annual payment.  Additional moorings or moorings on empty waterfront lots may incur an annual lease fee somewhere in the $100-200 range.

    STEP ELEVEN    Camano Sail and Power LLC  designs and manufactures the mooring that will suit all of the environmental conditions given the depth of water, tidal range, size of boat, expected weather, and following the guidelines set out by the DNR etc.  This includes a mooring float with your name and the lease number in 3-inch reflective characters  (typical mooring)   Our moorings are sea-life friendly, designed to enhance rather than deteriorate the habitat for sea life around your mooring.

    STEP TWELVE   We manufacture and install the mooring in an approved manner and you pay us the remainder of the bill.

    STEP THIRTEEN     We inspect your mooring at the end of the first year of service at no additional cost to ensure that all of the components are in good shape.  Any components found to be worn or aged to a point that they might pose a risk to your boat are replaced at no charge to you.

    STEP FOURTEEN       At the end of the first year, we offer you a maintenance contract for future maintenance based on the condition of your mooring after the first year of use.