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Sailboat trip to Caribbean ends the day it began...

Discussion in 'Cruising Sailors' started by nat55, Oct 23, 2018. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. Jackdaw


    Joined Nov 8, 2010
    10,448 posts, 3,446 likes
    Beneteau First 36.7 & 260
    US Minneapolis MN & Bayfield WI

    JimInPB and Davidasailor26 like this.
  2. jssailem


    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,624 posts, 4,325 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    Ah. The solution to survival during a Minnesota winter.

  3. dlochner


    Joined Jan 11, 2014
    3,910 posts, 1,856 likes
    Sabre 362
    113 US Fair Haven, NY

    Will Gilmore and jssailem like this.
  4. TomY

    TomY Alden Forum Moderator

    Joined Jun 22, 2004
    1,783 posts, 1,804 likes
    Alden 38' Challenger yawl
    US Rockport Harbor
    Those photos give me the shivers. We went into Rockport (the lesser) Harbor for the first time this season, slowly with 3 separate chart plotters in the cockpit. In broad daylight, in the lee of the South wind afforded by Cape Ann, I remember the entrance was a total mystery until we were right in it. The CP's showed it clearly, you just can't see it until you're in it. Once inside, you turn fast, it is SO small, there's barely room for two boats to pass each other. I was mentally not picturing the reality of the scale until I saw it(or the inner harbor which is surprisingly small after looking at e-charts.

    I was sailing last weekend and our weather was (and still easy) breezy and from the N, NW. I'm thinking they came into the entrance on strong following winds and big seas, in the dark, perhaps Sunday night?

    Tired and sick, it was a desperate move if you ask me. But I don't know what was going on in the boat. I've made worse choices and gotten away with it.

    But the simple and safe choice might have been easily entered Gloucester Harbor downwind another hour or two, if someone was sick. Completely protected by a huge jetty and well lit, it's easy.

    The boat looks like it may be a ChrisCraft Apache?

    Will Gilmore likes this.
  5. JRacer


    Joined Aug 9, 2011
    955 posts, 354 likes
    Beneteau 310
    US Cheney KS (Wichita)
    Was there over Christmas last year, son lives there. But, he is currently undergoing AF flight training in Wichita Falls TX until about this time next year.

    jssailem likes this.
  6. genec


    Joined Dec 30, 2010
    188 posts, 57 likes
    Pacific Seacraft Orion27
    US HP: San Diego, M: Anacortes
    I too am wondering the full story... the article is really missing details.

    That harbor entrance reminds me of the Oceanside Harbor entrance on the west coast... when approaching from the south... you think you have it, you think you know right where it is, then, as you get a bit closer, you realize you were looking at the jetty just to the north of the pier... and suddenly your "reality" shifts and you realize where the real opening is.

    I have done this approach dozens of times, mostly in good daylight, and I seem to get the same "surprise" every time. Perhaps if I approached from way out at sea instead from hugging the coast from the south. I think part of it is the curved inner wall and how it appears as background to the actual entrance.

    It is amazing how deceiving it can be.... and as I said, I've entered dozens of times. I am always cautious, knowing how deceiving it can be.

    Once inside, it is quite obvious.

  7. jssailem


    Joined Oct 22, 2014
    9,624 posts, 4,325 likes
    CAL 35 Cruiser
    US Salem, Moored Port Everett WA
    My thoughts went to the entrance at both Edmonds and Port Hudson here in the Puget Sound. Both have narrow entrances that require a sharp turn to find the safety of the harbor. Both can be approaches to a lee shore if the wind and waves are from the wrong direction. Trying to do this at night, when seasick, and for the first time is not a task for a novice sailor.
    There is more to the story that has not been shared.

  8. Brian D

    Brian D Moderator

    Joined Feb 17, 2006
    4,456 posts, 1,087 likes
    Lancer 27PS
    US MCB Camp Pendleton, Ca KF6BL
    The first thing I notice is no light on the jetty. There is a red flashing light on the breakwater at the entrance to Rockport Harbor. But that is it. I wonder why no light has been place there.

    @genec, Oceanside is my home and I have been tricked more than once. That was before I decided to way point the opening on my GPS. Not that I really need it but if I have been out all day and it is getting dark, it is hard to see the flashing red and green lights.

    I use the sealion bouy as my turn point. This give me enough setup time for the turn into the harbor. Once at the entrance, instead of turning right I go straight into the military base.

  9. genec


    Joined Dec 30, 2010
    188 posts, 57 likes
    Pacific Seacraft Orion27
    US HP: San Diego, M: Anacortes
    Yeah, I have it waypointed too... and for exactly that reason. The other thing that throws me off is being able to see that multi-story building behind the marina long before you arrive (from the south... my usual direction... ), but it sort of fades into the background "noise" just as you get to the opening.

    Brian D likes this.
  10. Misfits


    Joined Apr 14, 2009
    625 posts, 68 likes
    Sabre 28
    US NH
    It's not much of jetty south of the light 6 entrance. If they were coming from the north you'd think they would have lined up light 6 harbor entrance with nun 4 unless they cut it. That's the only reason I can come up. After that asleep at the switch.

    My mistake, it wasn't the jetty we drifted into striper fishing, was the breakwater a mile out.

    Brian D likes this.
  11. MitchM


    Joined Jan 20, 2005
    762 posts, 121 likes
    Nauticat 321 pilothouse 32
    US Erie PA
    I'd like to find a way to contact the unfortunate sailors . with winter coming , they could use some warm clothes and household goods.

    seaojoe likes this.
  12. NotCook


    Joined Dec 29, 2008
    682 posts, 194 likes
    Treworgy 65' Custom Steel Pilothouse Staysail Ketch
    US St. Croix, Virgin Islands
    Does that train stop at all the islands, like PR, STT, JVD, STX, STM, etc.? (those sound like train stop designations, but not sure.)

  13. JetLaggedChef


    Joined Jul 9, 2018
    65 posts, 23 likes
    Catalina 25
    US Lake Monroe
    I googled "Steve Davis" to see if there was a follow-up story with more details. I didn't find one, but I did find four other tragic boat stories with four different guys named "Steve Davis".

    I guess the moral is: Don't be Steve Davis. :badbad:

    CrispyCringle and Will Gilmore like this.
  14. Will Gilmore

    Will Gilmore

    Joined Oct 19, 2017
    4,799 posts, 2,792 likes
    O'Day 19
    US Littleton, NH
    Whew! I'm glad I missed that boat.

    -Will ("not Steve Davis", Dragonfly)

    JetLaggedChef likes this.

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