Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: CT/ Long Island Sound
Thanked 42 Times in 41 Posts
Rep Power: 17
Since you asked...
We drove to Harpswell, ME on Friday night and got under way aboard Eclipse Saturday morning at about 11. We motored out between islands in Casco Bay and hoisted sails around noon, beating past Portland and Biddeford until the wind shifted, and we began running. Since the jib was just slatting in the lee of the main, we furled it. The wind continued to pick up as we watched dolphins breaking the waves in the moonlight. We put a reef in the main. By midnight the waves were up to four or five feet, and we were able to surf at up to 11 knots on some of them. Around 0400 Sunday we had Provincetown light in view as we headed to the Cape Cod Canal. We had hoped to arrive there for the favorable tide at 11:30AM, but were three and a half hours early. With so much wind, (about 15 apparent) we decided to simply buck the current, riding one wave up the entrance channel at better than 10 knots. Inside, the breeze dropped so we shook out the reef. Even fighting the current, we were through the canal by 10:30. In Buzzards Bay the favorable NE wind picked up again, but without the 5-6 foot waves we'd had on the lee shore of Cape Cod Bay. We zipped past Mattapoisett, Marion, Woods Hole, avoided the high-speed New Bedford ferry, remembered fun times we'd had in Padanaram and Cuttyhunk, comparing the miserable weather we'd had then with the fantastic sun and warmth we had Sunday. Off Newport we saw the Caribbean Princess heading out, and at Point Judith we noticed a square-rigged vessel in the outer harbor before we altered course for The Race. We didn't see any submarines. By 22:00 we had passed Little Gull Island, but the breeze was dropping to around 10 knots as we entered Long Island Sound and the moon came up. Down the Sound there was a bit more commercial traffic, but nothing we had to move for until off Milford at around 0400 a Coast Guard cutter asked us to alter course so he could maintain his search pattern for a lost swimmer. A little before this the wind had shifted more North, so had we unfurled the jib. This made jibing out of the way a bit more work than we'd become used to, but we managed. Off Bridgeport the wind picked up a bit, and we tied up in Southport, CT at around 07:30. We had sailed 254 miles in less than 48 hours, much of it under a reefed main. I wonder what we'd have been able to do if we'd hoisted the spinnaker instead of furling the jib most of the way.
Last edited by paulk; 09-08-2009 at 08:14 PM.
Reason: spurious photo attachments