Originally Posted by SVAuspicious
I have heard the birds in time to avoid a trap. Janet kept saying "Why are there so many birds out here in the middle of the night?" until it finally occurred to me that we should probably stand further off. *grin*
This year, while hugging the Eastern Shore near Hooper Island, I noticed a chirping sound in the rigging. Then, I seemed to me there was a cricket in the boom. Seconds later I thought, "that's a bird, not a cricket." Then I heard many birds. Thought, "what is a flock of birds doing out here in the middle of the night?" Next thought - Fish Trap! "Helm's A-lee!"
Last year it was much darker. Just north of our close encounter of this year, we were getting ready to tack. A ship was heading north and I was waiting to make sure we could clear the ship's stern before making the tack. Everyone was staring at the ship to starboard, waiting for me to give the command when we drove right into an unlit/unmarked fish trap. First indication - poles going by the starboard rail...I fell off immediately and heard shouts from the crew that I was driving right into the center of the trap. Instinctually (or was it panic?), I just kept steering to port and called "gybe ho!" We gybed and sailed out the way we came. Except for one pole pulled down by a loose sheet, we touched neither poles nor nets. Not sure if the trap was abandoned or if were just super lucky. Either way, the crew was pretty alert for the rest of the night.