Monday, November 16, 2020

day twenty - turning back south

Sail off anchor 7:00, the sun not yet up and no wind.  A slow drift down the creek.  49 degrees and mist clinging to the guts in the marsh.  A perfect morning.

Blueberry Rx bar, buffalo bar and fruit cocktail for breakfast. I slip on my neoprene booties against the cold chill of the deck.  Out of the creek and motor sailing at 7:30.

It's a short sail across the Chester River to Kent Narrows, round up at 8:10 outside the channel entrance markers to bring down the sails, working quickly to make the 8:30 bridge lift.  Calm water in the narrows, a light breeze and I'm in position with 10 minutes to spare.  I radio the bridge tender and he tells me to stand by for a lift.  I hear the bells ringing, the bridge lifts and I make the easiest transit of the narrows that I have ever experienced.  

Sails up at 8:40, wind over port quarter and making 2.7 to the south.   By 9:30 the temperature is rising, sunny with a light wind on the port beam.  Making 2.7 passing Parsons Island.  Choppy confused water at 10:00 where Eastern Bay meets the Miles River.  Light wind, 2.3.

Very rough water at 11:30 trying to take a short cut across the shoal into the Wye River.  Still struggling at noon, fighting the shifting wind, outgoing tide and the wakes from all the power boats coming out of the Wye.  Under power into the Wye.

Wind, just a little and inconsistent, on the Wye, tacking into Shaw Bay at 1:05.  Steady stream of power boats throwing wakes that make sailing in light winds impossible.  Under power.  Drop the anchor in the little cove just inside of Drum Point at 2:15.

I spend the afternoon napping, reading and listening to a football game on the radio.  A fledgling eagle feeds along the shoreline.

Alpinaire creamy beef and noodles with mushrooms.  

18.8 NM for the day.



Aaron said...

Hey Steve,
I love following your logs and have been reading your back catalogue. Im currently building my own pathfinder on the east coast of Canada.
Do you have any extra ballast besides the centerboard case like John suggests for solo sailors? Or have you found that judicious reefing and reducing of sail are all you need? Loving the posts!

Shawn Stanley said...

Love the Wye River..been too many years since we were there last! Thanks for the photos, Steve!

Steve said...

Always great to visit the Wye and St. Michaels too!

Steve said...

Aaron, I believe my boat was the third Pathfinder built and at the time John said to "experiment" with the ballast. I can only speak for myself so worth checking with other builders/owners. First of all my centerboard in a 3/8 inch steel plate and weighs just shy of 100 pounds. On each side of the cb trunk are two 15 pound dumbbells from Walmart (about the cheapest way I could find to buy lead and also shaped perfectly to strap down to a cleat). So right there is 160 pounds of ballast. I typically leave my eight one-gallon cruising water bottles full and in place under the bunk flat on either side of the cb trunk. So eight gallons at roughly eight pounds per gallon, total of 64 pounds water ballast. Total of 224 in ballast. That may seem like a lot but to me it is just right. Often, when people first step aboard, they mention how solid the boat feels. I think this is due to the ballast. And under sail it feels safe and solid. Steve

Aaron said...

This is great Steve thank you! I will ask some of the others in this great community. Keep the posts coming!


Aaron said...

Also, i love the idea of a steel centerboard, and it explains the CB whinch i had been curious about.

Shawn Stanley said...

Aaron/Steve. Have any Pathfinder builders looked at weighted centerboards from other boats? Something like a 130# Lightning board comes to mind. Draft about 5' full down...and for the last 25 years or so they are SS. I am not a boat builder, so I have no idea the dimensions or anything like that.