Sunday, August 28, 2011

The bullet dodged us

Irene headed a lot further west than early trackers might have suggested. Essentially, the bullet dodged us.

I haven't been to the boat but I suspect that all is well. I did as much prep as I could short of having LIQUIDITY hauled. Sails are off, the boom is lashed on deck, the dodger is off, dinghy's deflated, rolled and in the cockpit and fenders tripled up from the usual. I don't regret the work I did or the work I created by stripping the boat. If nothing else, it was good practice.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Hurricane prep

The latest forecast for Boston Harbor (early this morning) indicates a downgrade from possible hurricane and tropical storm conditions; 30-40 knot winds, gusting to 55. Stay tuned though and maybe it's better to prepare for the worst. With most of the weekend available for prep, consider doubling up dock lines, adding fenders, bagging the sails and stowing your dodger and dinghy.

Monday, August 15, 2011

How fast is fast enough?

Patience was the watchword yesterday as we sailed from Scituate back to Boston.

We departed in light air, enough to sail off and at least keep the boat moving. But with the wind dead astern and the speed log reading just a few knots at most, ETA would be some ten hours later. I resisted the temptation of the motor, as other boats, with sails furled, left us in their wakes.

The five miles to Minot's Light took two hours. As we passed the light though, the breeze came up a bit from the southwest. With the wind on our port side, the five miles to Harding Ledge took just an hour. We were no longer being passed by those motoring north although we did see lots of boats motoring south. Motor on, sails furled, yes there's wind but keep on motoring because you don't know how long it lasts. That's been my mantra, too, but not yesterday.

With the wind cooperating, we managed the series of slight left turns into Nantasket Roads and to George's Island close hauled, then sailed reaching and close hauled to the Long Island bridge, where a big right turn had us on a broad reach until the left into Dorchester Bay had us close hauled once again. Our one tack of the day was to get just a bit of sea room before striking the sails and heading into Marina Bay.

We invested an extra hour sailing from Scituate to Minot's. Had we turned the motor on though, we'd have lost some significant dividends. (It didn't rain while we were sailing, either, which I'm sure it would have had I turned the motor on.)