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Channel Fever

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Nov 22, 2008
3,563
Endeavour 32 Portland, Maine
I’m waiting out another severe thunderstorm threat on a town mooring in Gloucester. This one also looks like it won’t live up to its billing but it’s too late to go on now. I should be in Portland in 2-3 days and, as you can guess from this, I’m eager to get there.



Power legs are shown in red and sail in green. Not a lot of sailing but what we did was great.

I’m facing a lot of unknowns when I get back to Strider’s home port so feeling on the terse side. So, I’ll just stick to the bare facts.

I spent a busy day in Cuttyhunk buying ice and what little I could find at the local market. No beer. Paul showed up on the 1900 ferry with what looked like an awesome amount of luggage for such an experienced cruiser. I forgave him when I found out it was mostly beer.

We left Cuttyhunk the next morning in low and grey skies but with enough visibility to appreciate the Elizabeth Islands. It as a pleasant but not very sporty sail up to Vineyard Haven where we toured the inner harbor where I think you can now count more schooners than even in Camden or Rockland. Many are small but some of those are among the best examples of the type anywhere.

A town mooring in Edgartown was next to wait out the last bit of bad weather.

We walked around town the next day and made a supply run to the market. Back on the boat, we (or, I) figured What the hell. How bad can it be for a run of a few miles over to Woods Hole? We got the answer, along with an impressive amount of spray driven down our necks and into other chinks in our foul weather gear armor.

We stopped briefly in Woods Hole so I could show Paul the waterfront and wave at the R/VTioga. There was some impressive tidal action where the wind was still blowing in from the full expanse of Buzzards Bay on our way over to Hadley Harbor. The clearing of the sky into that wonderful post storm sunset light made the cold wet crossing well worthwhile.

We headed out the next morning into a stiff wind that was forecast to back. The plan was to tack back to explore the other side of the Elizabeth Islands and anchor at the end of the canal but I suddenly realized that everything was lined up for a sleigh ride to Boston instead of a long power leg the next day. We skipped the tack and just kept on.

It was a grand sail up the bay, double reefed and going faster nearly close hauled than the boat will make under power. After a quick refueling stop in Sandwich, we headed out into Cape Cod Bay and more of the same wind which stubbornly refused to ease and back into the SW as predicted. No complaints though as it was more sporty and grand sailing.

Just past Plymouth, the wind stopped like someone had shut a door. We then powered into left over seas up and around into Boston where we picked up a mooring near World’s End inside of Nantasket Beach.

The next morning, we toured the entire Boston waterfront from the airport up into the Mystic River and back to Rowe’s Wharf where I dropped off Paul for his return to Canada via the car he left in Boston. I then made a long an boring run up to Gloucester in calm winds and seas where I now sit looking at the Doppler radar and thinking it wouldn’t have been a bad bet to have continued on to Portsmouth today. It might have been damp and dismal but I don’t see any yellow blobs on the radar.

I’m ready to be there.
 

BobT

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Sep 29, 2008
239
Gulfstar 37 North East River, Chesapeake Bay
Well done. Glad you can squeeze in a stop or too on the sprint to Portland.

Martha's Vineyard is very high on my destination list. I'm thinking of a prowl of the "Best boat building yards of the east" tour. We saw "Ragtime" at the pier in Chesapeake City this past Friday. (1928 64' classic motor yacht, restored at Boothbay, I believe.)
I have some family-of-friends in Menemsha that were great to visit a dozen or so years ago.
 
Apr 14, 2009
644
Sabre 28 NH
Guess you did make some miles. You did the right thing holing up in gloucesta. They continue to forecast really nasty weather coming thru. Tomorrow, you'll be basking in sunshine.
 

TomY

Alden Forum Moderator
Jun 22, 2004
2,031
Alden 38' Challenger yawl Rockport Harbor
I spent a busy day in Cuttyhunk buying ice and what little I could find at the local market. No beer. Paul showed up on the 1900 ferry with what looked like an awesome amount of luggage for such an experienced cruiser. I forgave him when I found out it was mostly beer.
Smart guy, Paul. Cuttyhunk is a dry island.

We break the 80's tomorrow on the coast of Maine Roger, perfect timing to come home.
 

TomY

Alden Forum Moderator
Jun 22, 2004
2,031
Alden 38' Challenger yawl Rockport Harbor
Lookit that Spot track. That seems a straight shot into Casco Bay..
Yeah, and the coast there is calling for a west wind, it doesn't get better than that. Flat seas, warm reaching winds.
 
Oct 17, 2011
2,800
Ericson 29 Southport..
Uh oh. I just did some calculations. Figuring from the amount of beer that Paul brought on board, you will never make it. Don't let this miscalculation bother you, NASA does it commonly, as in the missed Mars launch some years ago using Delambre & Mechain calculations.
But all may not be lost.
I'm not sure about the Down East area, but on the Carolina coast, we keep very fast Beer Shuttles. Sort of like the C.G. or Towboat, but these beer boats tend to be very fast and powerful vessels, realizing the gravity of the situation, they can be there MUCH quicker. I've even heard that they have a special sonar that can detect the last beer can hitting the cabin sole.
Wow, ain't technology wonderful..
 

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Oct 17, 2011
2,800
Ericson 29 Southport..
Haaaaaha. You are correct Scott. A man can be so drunk that he can't walk into the store to get more beer, but if you can hit that drive thru window...

We've upped our standards here on the Carolina Coast, now up yours.:D:D
 
Nov 22, 2008
3,563
Endeavour 32 Portland, Maine
74 nm in 13 hours from Gloucester to Portland. The wind started out promising but went light so it was mostly power run. I could have done it all under sail but see OP title. It was a long enough day as it was.

There is still beer in the bilge.

It's good to be home.
 
Oct 9, 2008
121
Marine Trader Sedan Mystic, CT
Nice trip Roger. Sorry we never did meet on the waterway. Keep up the travels and notes of your journey.
 
Nov 6, 2006
8,508
Hunter 34 Mandeville Louisiana
A good "Welcome Home" daysail in the bay.. Nice.. Enjoyed the posts of the trip! Feels good to be back in home waters, I'll bet ! Keep the posts coming, Roger. Thanks !
 
Nov 22, 2008
3,563
Endeavour 32 Portland, Maine
A good "Welcome Home" daysail in the bay.. Nice..
Yes, double reefed most of the time and hit 7 knots for a few moments. I'm waiting now for my younger son to wake up and go do it again in even stronger winds.
 
Jan 20, 2009
15
Endeavour 32 Fredericton, NB
Yes, double reefed most of the time and hit 7 knots for a few moments. I'm waiting now for my younger son to wake up and go do it again in even stronger winds.
First - Sorry Maine Sail for my username - if I were joining today I would pick something different and thank you so much for what you contribute to this forum and to my knowledge.

Roger - what a great experience spending a few days cruising with you. I had a good time and learned a lot - and not just about sailing. You're a guy that knows a lot about a lot and I really enjoyed that aspect of our trip.

It's taken me a while to post this because I just got back from the next adventure late Sunday night. I did have a few minutes to glance at the pictures that I took while I was aboard with you, and it reminded me that we had a big range of experiences squeezed into a short portion of your voyage. Of course, I don't have any pictures of the more challenging times because it was either too wet for the camera or I was too busy holding on. But that is normal - its hard to document a real adventure while you're having it.

It was fun to travel through and hear the stories of places where you have spent a lot of time in the past - around Woods Hole and the Cape Cod/Martha's Vineyard region in general, as well as Boston Harbor and the surrounding area.

The sailing we did was pretty special. You push your boat a bit harder and more skillfully than I am used to = good learning experiences for me.

Its hard to add very much to your description of our trip from Cuttyhunk to Boston - but I will mention a few high points for me:

Sailing close in to the virtually untouched Elizabeth Islands.

The amazing range of very special boats in Edgartown harbor.

The wet, wild ride to Woods Hole. How wet was it? At the height of it, even with pretty good gear, I had to take off my glasses and wipe my eyes every few minutes because they were stinging so much from the salt spray coming over the bow and into the cockpit.

Riding the tidal rip down toward Hadley Harbor from Woods Hole which reminded me of some of our Fundy Isles passages around Campobello and Deer Island.

In Hadley Harbor an introduction from the distance to the 0.1%.

The glorious sail up Buzzard's Bay and then fast motor with the current (I think we saw 11 knots over ground) through the Cape Cod Canal. My other time through there was on the tall ship Gazela nearly two decades ago.

Then, several hours of pretty sporty sailing north toward Boston until the wind abruptly died.

I really enjoyed the last evening and part of the next day in Boston harbor. I like to think I am somewhat familiar with Boston, but only from land, and seeing the surprisingly varied and somewhat undeveloped outer harbor and then the commercial inner harbor through your knowledgeable eyes I learned there is a lot more to the Boston waterfront and harbor than I ever guessed.

So, Roger, thank you very much for sharing a voyage that was both fun and a great learning experience for me. I truly hope you make it far enough north this summer that I can share some of my favorite home waters with you.

Pictures to follow.

Paul
 
Jan 27, 2008
2,939
ODay 35 Beaufort, NC
Roger,

Do you bring auxiliary fuel tanks on your journeys in the form of jerry jugs or do you strictly rely on the capacity of your main tanks? There is a bit of a debate on another thread and thought a well experienced traveler might shed some light on this.

Thanks.
 
Nov 22, 2008
3,563
Endeavour 32 Portland, Maine
Do you bring auxiliary fuel tanks on your journeys in the form of jerry jugs or do you strictly rely on the capacity of your main tanks?
By completely unplanned and totally fortuitous happenstance, one of the old fashioned shaped jerry jugs and one of the new, wider and squatter ones exactly wedge securely into my cockpit locker. I don't think they would shift in a knockdown. I have 20 gallons in my main tank, of which only about 17 is usable before sucking air. I have a bilge tank with 12 and can drain the last of the main tank into it. Perhaps 10 of the bilge tank are usable so I can carry 40 gallons of fuel which gives me quite a range for a boat of this size, 34 hours at 6.15 knots, so 209 nm in smooth water. That's a S/L ratio of 1.21 and I can, of course, extend range a lot by slowing down.

I carry an automotive fuel pump with a 12 volt "lighter" plug. I have a fueling vent in my main tank with a ball valve on the end which I open only for fueling. It is also a sounding tube. The plastic discharge hose from the portable pump goes into the vent and tightening the ball valve on it makes it impossible for it to be pulled out accidentally. I have a piece of PVC pipe with two end caps. Inside is a wand of PEX tubing with an adapter to plastic tubing to push connect to the fuel pump. The wand goes into the jugs while they are still in place so I can transfer fuel safely even in a seaway without lifting and pouring jugs. The jugs only come out of the locker when empty for filling.

I've never carried jugs on deck as so many do. They would be a huge pain on a boat the size of mine. I don't know if I would do it and have no experience with it so nothing to add to the debate.

BTW the transfer pump is also my emergency back up fuel pump.
 
Jan 20, 2009
15
Endeavour 32 Fredericton, NB
Here are some pictorial highlights of my voyage with Roger from Cuttyhunk to Boston.
In order:
Elizabeth Islands scene
Edgartown harbor
Boats in Edgartown
Hadley Harbor
Hadley Harbor boat
Roger at World's End (Boston)
Boston harbor - Work boat, sail boat, downtown
 

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