Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tsawwassen: gateway to Point Roberts, WA

Tsawwassen is a bedroom community about an hour south of Vancouver. It is the end of the world as far as Canada is concerned and unless you wanted to spend a day at the beach or catch a ferry to Victoria there is not much here. All roads lead north into the larger cities of Richmond and Vancouver where the locals commute daily to their jobs in the city.


It is a place surrounded by water on 3 sides separated at the 49th parallel to yield a little piece of America at its southern tip known as Point Roberts, WA. If you were heading up I-5 from Seattle or Bellingham, you would have to cross the Cdn/US border crossing at Blaine and drive northward about 50 kms (30 miles), turn left and head south to Tsawwassen and through US border security to finally arrive at your destination.


This intersection is in the middle of the business district. There is a strip mall housing a large grocery store, bank and other assorted businesses, as well as a Tim Hortons. This is 12th Avenue, only 12 blocks from America


Most residents of Point Roberts are Canadian. There is not really much shopping down there having only a few gas stations, bank and a couple of postal outlets where we ship our online internet purchases. Point Roberts is considered to be continental USA and UPS maintains daily deliveries here from their distribution centre in Bellingham.


The US border crossing is at the top of the hill


As you near the top of the hill, you are advised that the border is a mere 150 meters (450 feet) ahead . The main street is 56th Street and 1st Avenue is the last exit before the border crossing (which is 1 block south).


On the Canadian side, it appears to be a normal subdivision, the same as you would find anywhere, except that their back yards back up along the US border. Just a short jump over your fence and you are in the America. Not that you would do this of course, as there are security cameras everywhere to keep an eye on things


Canada ends at the yellow cement abutments. I don't dare to put my foot on the other side. The Canadian subdivision is built right up to the "line", and on the American side there is nothing but trees and undeveloped land


Here is a closer view of the USA. A tranquil place with little traffic


Finally we see a classic car turn the corner. Yes, its a beautiful day to drop the top of your Triumph TR3, a cousin to the mighty Bonneville


An omnimous sign which MUST be OBEYED . . .



  1. Go on, tell me this weird place isn't cool? Aren't you glad I poked you into going? Do you smuggle huge amounts of cheap US medications back into Canada? (ha ha).

  2. Tsawwassen is my favorite bedroom is so tranquil, except on the main street.
    You've captured it well.
    I am surprised to see how well in shape that TR3 is.
    Did you go to Centennial Beach?
    I didn't think most Residents of Point Roberts are do they do it? they have Residency papers or what?
    Most people I met there were Americans or had dual citizenship...if you know how they do it let me know cause I wouldn't mind getting a place there


  3. Mr Conchscooter:

    Tsawwassen is on the Canadian Side. I didn't realize I was going for a ride in that direction on that Sunday so I did not bring my Passport. You must have a passport or Nexus to cross to the US side. The next time I have some free time, I will cross the border and show you some of the sights on the other side


    You're probably right, dual citizenship residents. It's amazing how inexpensive land is down there in Point Roberts. It looks so depressed. A perfect place for Conchscooter to set up residence. I wouldn't mind having a place down their either, a small place on the beach would be nice

  4. Hey bob..I'm looking forward to meeting you Mr. Ambassador...
    I've been quiet, cause I did run into a road accident (details to follow when I calm down)which basically destroyed the lower half of my jaw...under reconscrustion...the lower plate teeth were 3/4 knocked out and the dental surgeon is having trouble making a lower denture plate that will function and look good...right now I look like a Monkey and that's the truth...


  5. Berge:

    OH NO. I hope you are going to be OKay. Let me know if I can do anything for you. I would love to help you in any way possible.
    We're also running out of summer & good weather. My bike has now had it's first service. I am told to go out and "let 'er rip", and accelerate HARD.

  6. Dear Bobskoot:

    I was very impressed with yur picture of Canadians stepping over the border to get into the US, where all the jobs are.

    I didn't realize there was anyplace in the State of Washington that could only be reached by going through Canada. My congressman has an office in Washington that can only be reached by tunneling through a mountain opf bullshit. No one ever goes there.

    i didn't think therr were any spots on a US border that didn't have a wall, barbed wire, or something to stop terorists from entering the US and joining more than a million of their colleagues, hiding here on the TSA's "No-Fly" list.

    Great pictures... Yet I was horrified to learn that "Baron" has apparently gone down.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • Reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  7. Thanks bob,
    didn't mean to scare you or will fine and forgotten in a week or two.
    Yes, I did kiss the pavement, was avoidable, my mistake as I dind't see it coming, was too late when I finally did see it (No pun intended)I had by then already hit the pavement with my face on the edge of the side walk. The half face helmet was a mistake and didn't help as my right hand side lower teeth either broke, flew off, or were painfully swallowed in the process..My prescription glasses were a total write off. It's funny when I think of it now, but it wasn't when it happened...odly enough I have some pain in my left arm (Not the right arm...which is bizarre) and my rib cage...but I can work and major problem there..just that it looks bad with all the scars on my face... now the dental surgeon has to take the roots out from the fractured teeth out of my lower gum, extract the remaining five teeth I have been left with and build a will probably all be done within a week or two.
    Thanks for your concern

  8. Jack "r":

    Yes, Jack, it's amazing that you have to travel through another country to reach a remote part of the USA. You should move up here and telecommute to work
    Also, it's timely that I wrote about this jut of land and that fugitive from CA got into Canada using that route.
    NO barbed wires, just walk across the border on the beach. It's probably not heavily patrolled as it is hard to walk on water


    It hurts just reading your words. I read it twice and it hurt twice as much. Hope you aren't in great pain, and heal as it never happened