Knot in a hurry

by Bob Kay

Construction and History

"Knot In A Hurry" was originally christened "90 Factor" and she was built by Garry Snider in Belleville, Ontario Canada. Her construction began in 1985 and she took 5 years to complete. Garry Snider was actually a school teacher at the Sir James Whitney School for the blind. He was also the Commander of the Belleville Power and Sail Squadron. Garry had planned to retire and take his vessel to the east coast of Canada. I speculate that his choice of name for the boat was a humorous reference to a qualifying factor in Garry's teacher's retirement plan.

Sadly, Garry never realized his dream, cancer deprived him of that. When he became too sick, and needed hospitalization, Garry realized he would no longer be able to use the boat and he reluctantly parted with his dream tug/trawler.

The second owner, Douglas Booth of Kingston Ontario, purchased the "90 Factor" from Garry on a handshake and a gentleman's agreement. The vessel was renamed "Knot In A Hurry". Doug told me that Garry openly cried when he sold the boat. Doug told me he also often visited with Garry during his illness and all Garry wanted to talk about was his boat.

Garry Snider finally succumed to cancer . At his funeral, many of his close friends spoke about how much Garry loved his tug/trawler. I am told his family had a picture of the boat etched onto Garry's tombstone and it can be seen in the Belleville cemetery. I would say this is the type of love only a boat builder/owner can truly understand and from what I am told by others about him, Garry personified that unique type love for a boat that was built to fulfill a dream.

A few years later, "Knot In A Hurry" was noticed docked in a National Park in the 1000 islands on the St. Lawrence River. It was spotted there by a nautical surveyor who recognized the vessel and knew the original builder. The surveyer told the then current owner that during the vessel's construction, he had used it as one of his teaching aids since he lectured on marine construction techniques and he also visited the construction site several times with his students during the boats different stages of construction. It was considered an excellent example of fine boat building tecniques.

I am Bob Kay and I am the third owner of this fine boat. I first encountered the boat during the major power black out of the summer of 2003.

My wife and I were on vacation in Ganaoque, Ontario and due to the black out, we were forced to spend an additional night in the area of the Saint Lawrence River in Eastern Ontario. On that last night of our vacation, I found myself bored and flipping through the pages of the small local newspaper when I came across a short advertisement describing this "unique pocket trawler" that "may be for sale." I decided that any unique boat that "may be for sale" warranted some further investigation!

I called the phone number and managed to speak with the boat owners wife. She said her husband was very busy at this time as he worked for Ontario Hydro and had to restore electricity to millions of people across Ontario. She said I would have to call back later.

This was the last night of my vacation. I was leaving in the morning. This phone call was not actually going to happen.

Being a determined sort of person, I decided to make the phone call the next day before leaving for home and actually spoke with the owner, Doug. He told me he was not available to personally show me the boat but I was welcome to go and look at it on my own. I had been looking to purchase a boat for several months and up to this point, I would say half-heartedly. When I saw this boat it was honestly "love at first sight". My wife even piped in said that "it was cute". Every boat I had previously shown her received only negative reviews. This was indeed a very positive endorsement!

For the next few months, I found myself talking about nothing else but this boat I looked at along the St.Lawrence River. I was coming to realize that my conversations indicated I had a dream. That dream was to own this particular boat and have it docked near me at Harbour West, my local marina in Hamilton, Ontario. I knew I would enjoy my free time on this boat and be there every opportunity I had. During this time I also maintained communication with Doug by email and telephone. The subject of purchasing the boat and a price still was not broached.

By the fall of 2003, I finally mustered enough courage and made Doug an offer to purchase the boat. Before he would accept my offer he was insistent that I visit him in person before he could solidify any deal.

In December of 2003 I drove four hours from Hamilton to Kingston, Ontario to finalize our agreements and conditions and finally meet Doug face to face. This is also when I learned the story of Gary Snider and the history of my new boat. Having finally met me, Doug wanted to make absolutely sure that he, as well as Garry Snider, would approve of the prospective new owner.

I think I came to the complete understanding at that point that this boat was built on a dream and the lagacy of a man. To carry on that legacy, the second owner needed assurances that I would give the boat the same care, respect and attention that both the previous owners had given it. I quickly realized it was not just a boat purchase - I had become an integral part of one man's legacy. In order to continue the legacy, I had to make promises that I would always feel committed to keep.

We finalized the agreement and I had the boat trucked from Kingston to her new home in Hamilton during the month of April 2004. Our boat always turns heads and draws a curious crowd wherever we go. It is truly a unique boat and I am very proud to own her and her legacy.

My wife and I have added our own personal decorating touches to the interior of our boat while maintaining the original blue water trawler look and traditional lines. In all, we spent no more than an additional $6,000.00 to make the boat exactly as we would like it. We have enjoyed a wonderful first summer on our boat and we are looking forward to many more. We thought long and hard but in the end decided we could not have picked a better name for our boat and so she remains "Knot In A Hurry".

"Knot In A Hurry" winters resting in a covered boat shed enjoying the cold dry winters of Canada and spends her summers plying the waters of the south western end of Lake Ontario and Hamilton Harbour. If you happen to see her out there in your travels in the area, offer her a sound of the horn or a friendly wave, Garry would love it!