Monday, November 9, 2015

day twelve - coming in

The forecast from the evening before - steady light rain, light winds out of the north then swinging to the south - proved less than accurate.  Just after slipping into the bivy a heavy rain began to fall.  The wind kicked up and so did the chop.  The rain became a torrent and the wind blew the forward end of the boom tent back into the cockpit.  Thinking it was a local squall I kept waiting for it to end, but it went on for hours.  The chop became so stiff I wondered if I had dragged anchor and was pounding on the shallows along the shore of the creek.  I was dry and comfortable inside my sleeping bag in the bivy but knew that there would be a lot of water in Spartina in the morning.  At some point late in the night, how late I don't know, the rain and wind ended, and I fell asleep.

Up at 5:15 to begin bailing out Spartina.  Inside the bivy I slip on my clothes.  Outside the bivy I put on the foul weather gear.  The inside of the bivy and the sleeping bag are dry, everything else in the boat is wet.  Inches of water roll about on the cockpit sole and bunk flat as I move about in the darkess.  A triangle of a red, green and white light moves across the creek, a waterman starting his day.  He swings a spotlight in our direction, keeps going.  I bail with a cup and then a sponge until most of the water is gone.

We sail off anchor just before 7:00 under a low overcast, 3.2 knots down Cox Creek in a light rain.   Deadrises work trot lines for crabs.  Choppy water at Turkey Point and a hint of blue sky.  Forecast calling for rain and wind, warnings for the hurricane which is showing a course to the MidAtlantic.

The wind comes and goes, we sail and motor sail, crossing Eastern Bay to Tilghman Point quicker than expected.  At 10:00 the sun begins to break through the low overcast, a light southwest wind on the approach to St. Michaels.  We sail in the entrance channel, drop sails and motor to the museum docks. 

Pulling into a slip I grab a piling and start to get out of Spartina with a dock line.  A man walks up and asks "Can I help you?"   Yes, I tell him, I'm hear for the small craft festival.  "It might be cancelled, you know."  "Yes, I know."  Tied up at the docks I jot 14 nm for the day and 280 nm for the trip.

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