Crossing the north border...

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The wife wants me to take her to Victoria during spring break. I have both OR CHL and UT CCW, but both mean squat once I cross the border. So, other than unloading and locking my handgund in the car trunk, any other sage advice from our friends up north?
 
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Info from the State Department:

SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES: IMPORTATION OF FIREARMS: Firearms are much more strictly controlled in Canada than in the United States. Violation of firearms restrictions may result in prosecution and imprisonment. As of January 1, 2001, visitors bringing any firearms into Canada, or planning to borrow and use firearms while in Canada, must declare the firearms in writing using a Non-Resident Firearm Declaration form. Visitors planning to borrow a firearm in Canada must obtain in advance a Temporary Firearms Borrowing License. These forms must be signed before a Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) officer at the border and no photocopies are available at the border. Full details and downloadable forms are available from the Canada Firearms Program . Canadian law requires that officials confiscate firearms and weapons from persons crossing the border who deny having the items in their possession. Confiscated firearms and weapons are never returned. Possession of an undeclared firearm may result in arrest and imprisonment.

Canada has three classes of firearms: non-restricted, restricted, and prohibited. Non-restricted firearms include most ordinary hunting rifles and shotguns. These may be brought temporarily into Canada for sporting or hunting use during hunting season, use in competitions, in-transit movement through Canada, or personal protection against wildlife in remote areas of Canada. Anyone wishing to bring hunting rifles into Canada must be at least 18 years old, must properly store he firearm for transport, and must follow the declaration requirements described above. Restricted firearms are primarily handguns; however, pepper spray, mace, and some knives also are included in this category. A restricted firearm may be brought into Canada, but an Authorization to Transport permit must be obtained in advance from a Provincial or Territorial Chief Firearms Officer. Prohibited firearms include fully automatic, converted automatics, and assault-type weapons. Prohibited firearms are not allowed into Canada.
So, it looks like you need an Authorization to Transport permit in advance to bring your handgun.

More info from Canada here.
 
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I can't comment on the long gun aspect of things, but I will say that unless you are competing in a shooting competition, you've got to leave the handgun behind.

I know for a fact that some people from Canada cross into the US to compete in IPSC or what have you, but that is the only "legitimate" reason for bringing a gun into the US, and also (as far as I can remember) the only legitimate reason for crossing the border to the North is for the same reason. Also, I know that even IF you have a legitimate claim for bringing a gun into Canada, there is some paperwork that you have to complete, but I'm not sure how much or what forms/information they need.

Now long guns (IIRC) are a different story, but more or less you still need a valid reason to bring them and to be totally honest, I don't even know if "hunting" would qualify.

If you want, go to the bible of Canadian gun laws and information at
www.canadiangunnutz.com and ask there. I know for a fact that someone will be able to help you in depth there.
 
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Just leave it at home. The thing they ALWAYS ask is if you have a gun. Have great time in Victoria though, I've been there at least 20 times, take the Ferry through the San Juan's, and don't forget to bring back 222's.
 
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Even unloading and locking it away will be a risk. If you do happen to get searched and they find it, you are violating their firearms import laws. The fact that you can legally carry in certain states means nothing.

+1 for leaving it home.
 
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Even unloading and locking it away will be a risk. If you do happen to get searched and they find it, you are violating their firearms import laws. The fact that you can legally carry in certain states means nothing.

+1 for leaving it home.
They will ask you if you have a gun, when you say you do, you will be thoroughly searched period.
 
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DO NOT try to take it accross the border. Bad things could happen if by some chance you or your car get searched. FYI the last time I crossed a couple years back I spoke to the local police near the border (US side) and they told me of a store that has secure lockers that you can lock up such items for a small fee. I'm sorry I can't remember the name of the place but I do recall that they were very nice and secure. All went well and I picked up my pistol when I came back.
 
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DO NOT try to take it accross the border. Bad things could happen if by some chance you or your car get searched. FYI the last time I crossed a couple years back I spoke to the local police near the border (US side) and they told me of a store that has secure lockers that you can lock up such items for a small fee. I'm sorry I can't remember the name of the place but I do recall that they were very nice and secure. All went well and I picked up my pistol when I came back.
It's probably in Blaine WA.
 
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Victoria is a very pleasant and laid-back place to visit. Unless you are very familiar with their laws & willing to jump through a lot of hoops, including having your firearms registered, I suggest that you forget about taking any guns across the line. Particularly if you are just there for a short visit. Sadly there are only two gun stores in all of the greater Victoria area...

It is also worth noting that it is illegal to carry ANY thing with you in Canada for the purpose of defending yourself against humans, not just guns.

On the other hand you CAN use "reasonable force" to defend yourself and that includes using anything you happen to have on you at the time. Pepper spray for use on dogs is legal to carry though it is unclear to me whether or not it is legal to bring it in with you. Pocket and fixed blade knives that you have with you for utility purposes are generally fine too. When you add a powerful compact flashlight to the mix you have a trio of tools that you can carry with you legally almost anywhere in Canada. Were you familiar with the defensive application of those tools, you'd be far from unarmed and able to respond well to vast majority of situations you're likely to encounter.

Check out these links for more info:
- THE official word: http://www.cfc-cafc.gc.ca/factsheets/visitin_e.asp
- The best overview to Canadian gun laws that I've found: <broken link removed>
 
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Victoria is a very pleasant and laid-back place to visit. Unless you are very familiar with their laws & willing to jump through a lot of hoops, including having your firearms registered, I suggest that you forget about taking any guns across the line. Particularly if you are just there for a short visit. Sadly there are only two gun stores in all of the greater Victoria area...

It is also worth noting that it is illegal to carry ANY thing with you in Canada for the purpose of defending yourself against humans, not just guns.

On the other hand you CAN use "reasonable force" to defend yourself and that includes using anything you happen to have on you at the time. Pepper spray for use on dogs is legal to carry though it is unclear to me whether or not it is legal to bring it in with you. Pocket and fixed blade knives that you have with you for utility purposes are generally fine too. When you add a powerful compact flashlight to the mix you have a trio of tools that you can carry with you legally almost anywhere in Canada. Were you familiar with the defensive application of those tools, you'd be far from unarmed and able to respond well to vast majority of situations you're likely to encounter.

Check out these links for more info:
- THE official word: http://www.cfc-cafc.gc.ca/factsheets/visitin_e.asp
- The best overview to Canadian gun laws that I've found: <broken link removed>
Not entirely true.

I carry a pocket knife with me all the time. It's on my key chain. Well it's not a gun, it is at the very least something, and I'm certainly not afraid to use it.

You can bring knifes across, no problem and that IIRC works both ways. Whenever I get to go to the US (Spokane usually) I always get some decent knifes when I'm there. The selection is better and they are way cheaper in the US then up here.

The last time I crossed back into Canada, I had 5-6 pocket knifes that I declared, no problem. They weren't even concerned enough to pull me over and inspect, it was just a good old "have a nice day".
 
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DO NOT try to take it accross the border. Bad things could happen if by some chance you or your car get searched. FYI the last time I crossed a couple years back I spoke to the local police near the border (US side) and they told me of a store that has secure lockers that you can lock up such items for a small fee. I'm sorry I can't remember the name of the place but I do recall that they were very nice and secure. All went well and I picked up my pistol when I came back.
It's probably in Blaine WA.
It would be great if one of our Northern members could verify these locations and we could keep them under the resources tab. From my quick search on the internet these are the locations I found.

Coast to Coast (Ace Hardware), Fairway Center, Front Street, Lynden, (360) 354-2291
Dave’s Sports Shop - 1738 Front St., Lynden, (360) 354-5591
Exxon Station at exit 275 in Blaine--they have lockers, you supply your own lock.
Yeager’s Sporting Goods, 3101 Northwest Ave, Bellingham, (360) 733-1080
 
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It would be great if one of our Northern members could verify these locations and we could keep them under the resources tab. From my quick search on the internet these are the locations I found.

Coast to Coast (Ace Hardware), Fairway Center, Front Street, Lynden, (360) 354-2291
Dave’s Sports Shop - 1738 Front St., Lynden, (360) 354-5591
Exxon Station at exit 275 in Blaine--they have lockers, you supply your own lock.
Yeager’s Sporting Goods, 3101 Northwest Ave, Bellingham, (360) 733-1080
Do the US border agents not offer to "hold" weapons while you are in Canada?

I thought I remembered seeing an episode of "Homeland USA" where a guy crossed the border, declared that he had a hand gun with him and was told to leave it with the US border guards and that he could "pick it up" on his way back.

Is that not an option?
 
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Not entirely true.
Which part did you disagree with? I was saying ( or at least attempting to say :) ) that knives are generally good to go in Canada, provided that you let the friendly officer know that you possess them as a tool for utility (most anything other than self-defense) purposes and don't confuse these tools of yours with "weapons", which you are banned from carrying.
 
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I would suggest leaving the gun at home. Taking a firearm into Canada is dicey at best. Victoria is absolutely beautiful and is a very safe city so it is worth it and you should be pretty safe. I wish I was going. I will be there in May, but only for 9 hours (cruise ship stop returning from Alaska). :(
 

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