I have zero sailboat experience, I have 25yrs of powerboat experience. So I'm not a complete neophyte when it comes to the water and boats. But I do understand that sailing adds a complexity to it that I'm not used to. I've watched a few beginning sailing DVDs from Netflix to get a basic idea of the order of things. So far the best rule is stay on the windward side of the boat. Problem is that the boat was used for Club Racing and has a bunch of extra Rigging that I get confused trying to figure out, so the DVDs are somewhat helpful. Like my Boat has three Halyards attached to the bow of the Boat. Stuff like that...anyway
We left Everett at 7am Friday Jun 14th and we start out ok... we get south to Mukilteo Ferry and it starts getting a little lumpy, at this point the wife isnt looking so enthusiastic about the trip. 10 minutes later she is getting full-on seasick. Giving the circumstances I decided to call my Parents who are retired and live on Whidbey Island. My Father meets me at Langley and she gets a ride back to his place. I ended up going up the east side of Whidbey and through Swinomish Channel, Motoring the whole way. Fortunately the boat came with an Autohelm and I was able to set a Compass heading and didnt have to Steer the boat the entire trip. Ten minutes out of Langley the winds chilled out and the Sun came out. Changed into some shorts and sandals and enjoyed motoring to "Hole in the Wall" making 6.5 Knots over ground according to GPS.
Now it gets interesting... I hit hole in the wall at a Low Flood with a 0'6" low tide. I think I hit it a little after the low so I might have had a foot more. At the entrance I'm a little off to the East side of the channel markers and I feel the keel kissing the bottom. I've been fortunate to have spent a lot of time on the Skykomish with a few people who know how to read a river and that experience paid off. Hitting the entrance I had the kicker motor wide open and when I hung up on the bottom my river experience come back to me real quick. I quickly moved the boat to the west side of the channel and no more bottom tickling. Now I was paying attention and wound my way through the channel and made it to La Conner without further incidents. La Conner was a really nice looking place I with likely revisit it when I have more time.
Hole in the Wall...
Motoring up Swinomish Channel to La Conner
Once into La Conner the Swinomish Channel was a breeze, if I was to do it again I would do it again I would definitely time the High Tide at Hole in the wall. I motor out into Guemes Channel around Washington Park to Fidalgo Head and into Skyline. It was a gorgeous evening and made a nice end to a dicey start of a day. Thanks to those who suggested this route.
Sunset at Fidalgo Head.