So who else was out there yesterday (Sunday)?
I can't imagine a more perfect sailing day.
My wife and I were at the dock by 9:45 and pulled out of the slip at about 10:30. As soon as we were out of the inlet and in Hills Bay, I could tell there was enough wind, so up went the sails and off goes the engine. We motored for probably all of about 15 minutes before we were under sail.
The wind was pretty much directly from the west, so we were sailing downwind most of the way out the Piankatank. Coming out of Hills Bay gave us the opportunity to gybe a few times - a first for us with this boat (I just got the boat in August). And it was remarkeably smooth and easy to do.
We went out the mouth of the Piankatank and had nowhere in particular to go - mostly my goal was to get my wife more familiar and comfortable with sailing, as she has zero boating experience. So we turned south west around Gwynn Island and practiced gybing a few more times. Then we hove to and had lunch - a good breeze kept the boat heeled over a bit even as we were hove to.
After lunch, I re-sheeted the jib
and the boat took off just like hitting the accelerator in your car. We instantly went from 1 knot to about 6.5. Absolutely fabulous wind and weather, with only nice, small waves. It just doesn't get any better!
We headed up past Stingray Point and partway across the mouth of the Rappahannock. My wife was starting to feel a little motion discomfort at that point, and I knew it was going to take us at least an hour to get back up the Piankatank, since it would be all upwind sailing, so we came about and started heading back.
Five tacks up the river worked out so perfectly, I couldn't believe it. The last one put us directly in the middle of the "narrow" part of the channel between Gwynn Island and Stove
Point Neck, and then a straight shot back to the Queens Creek inlet. We sailed all the way down into Hills Bay - I didn't want to drop the sails, it was such perfect sailing!!
Finally had to switch over to engine power because the inlet was approaching, so I reluctantly put away the sails.
All in all, I had a fantastic time - I just wanted to stay out there longer! It was an absolutely fantastic sailing day yesterday.
So there's my "Chesapeake Rainy Day Antidote"!!