Sunday, October 31, 2010

the halyards were silent

I was tucked into my sleeping bag on the last night of the long weekend sail a couple of weeks ago. The wind, blowing strong out of the northwest all day, had started to moderate at least a little. Paul and Dawn were anchored 40 or 50 yards from me, down a ways toward the mouth of Long Creek. And I started thinking about the sounds I could hear. All of them came from the boat. The halyards were silent, I had run a piece of line around the two main halyards, the single jib halyard and the lazy jacks that kept them quiet. But the mizzen sailed, still raised, crinkled in the wind. My JW pennant fluttered at the top of the mast. And the hull, well it was symphony of sounds. Dripping. Splashing. Gurgling. Slapping. Swooshing. All that just from a boat floating on a calm creek.

That photo above is one that Bruce shot on day two of the Tag Team sail on Bonner Bay. I don't have any good photos from Long Creek, my camera was consuming batteries better than it was taking photographs. But you get the idea. Evenings and nights on calm water can be a very nice experience.

And that night on Long Creek I was thinking it was an appropriate place to be anchored out for the last time this year. When I started my cruising year back in May I put in at Germantown, sailed across the Pamlico River and explored Mouse Harbor, including a nice little sail (above) on Long Creek. I was happy when Dawn and I looked at the charts a couple of weeks ago on our long weekend sail and agreed that Long Creek, with the strong NW wind, would be a good place for for Spartina and Dawn Patrol to anchor for the night. It was a nice connection between the beginning and the end of 25 days of cruising that somehow slipped on to my schedule this year. The gps track below is from the October trip. It was nice to be back where I started.

I'm still catching up from the last trip. I finally got the pages of my NC chartbook dried out just yesterday - almost two weeks after the sail. I usually plan my trips to be back at the dock before noon on the last day, giving me time to drive home and start cleaning up the boat. But this last trip I didn't get home until well after dark and had to be at work early the next morning. So I never really got a good start on the clean up of Spartina and all the gear, just did it piece by piece over the next several days.

I was very glad to hear from the customer service department at Coleman. I was cooking one night on the Chesapeake Bay sail with my Coleman stove and griddle when I heard a metallic "pop". It was the griddle warping. After the griddle warped it could not sit evenly on the stove, it rocked back and forth or slipped out of place. So I emailed Coleman. It took them a month to get back to me. But all the asked for was a photo and explanation. I sent them the photo below, showing how the griddle no long sat on a flat surface. And now they are sending me a brand new griddle.

I figure I've got one more day sail left in the season, hopefully this coming weekend. Then I'll start with the off season work.


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