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Sea Dawg 07-14-2012 07:52 PM

Tell us yer Sea Stories
Post your harrowing experiences, squalls, docking incidents, lessons learned, fires, mishaps, groundings and what makes you wonder why we do it. I'll start with one that happened years ago...

So we're on Cherrystone Point on only my second trip across Chesapeake Bay and invited my best friend and his brother along in a convoy of rented 23'Columbia and 25'Similar boat. We've only beached the shoal vessels briefly for the evening when we see a squall heading down the bay with lots of lightening. We decided to anchor off and avoid heaving onto land (might have been ok). Both boats tossed as the squall came on us faster than we could set anchors or even get into anchoring position. One outboard motor quit and we had to anchor now or crash onto shore. As my friends brother was on deck I had him pay out anchor line as I laid out plenty of scope lest we break loose. He was doing well as we got enough scope out to hold us off the beach and I was about to cinch the anchor line he hands me the bitter end and says, "That's then end..." THE END? I thought, THE END! as I had a 25' boat bucking to free itself from a well dug in anchor and 35 knot winds....
We tied the boats together for the next few minutes and the storm passed as quickly as it came.
Lesson #1 don't assume the anchor is attached. I believe I expected a little warning as we approached the end of the anchor line, but maybe not. I suppose it might be good to check the anchor in the well is attached.

paulk 07-17-2012 11:40 PM

Re: Tell us yer Sea Stories
This just in... A J/120 from our club, returning from the Newport-Bermuda race earlier this month hit something in the middle of the night. It stopped the boat (which had been moving at about 8 knots) with a bang. The sprit, which had been housed at the time, was rammed aft through the head bulkhead. A padeye for the sprit's retaining line in the forward cabin got sheared off and shot back into the bulkhead with such force that it left a U-shaped mark where it hit. No other apparent damage to the stem, bow, deck or fittings, but the sprit is jammed into its housing and may have to be cut apart to get it out. A whale, maybe?

smackdaddy 07-18-2012 12:29 AM

Re: Tell us yer Sea Stories
Dawg, dude, you need to check out the BFS thread. It's the granddaddy of sea story libraries...

Sea Dawg 07-19-2012 10:02 AM

Re: Tell us yer Sea Stories

Originally Posted by smackdaddy (Post 897903)
Dawg, dude, you need to check out the BFS thread. It's the granddaddy of sea story libraries...

Thanks Smack! It's an awesome thread and will take some time to review more of them. I'll be sure to contribute a BFS to the thread.

Jetexas 07-19-2012 10:55 AM

Re: Tell us yer Sea Stories
This tale takes place at the dock ... but it's just as haunting. For there's a ghost involved.

When my brother and I began the Starwind 27 project, it was completely rotten, full of mold, missing pieces, and a general mess.

There was a hole in the side of the boat, but the nylon through-hull for the sink drain had disappeared -- because it was a ghost hole!

The plan to replace it involved me hanging off the deck with the outer part of the through-hull, sticking it through the hole. My brother would be inside the boat under the sink where he'd grab it and screw the backing onto it.

Attempt one. I lean over the side, but I see no hole. Puzzled, I stand back up, check my bearings and resituate myself.

Attempt two. I lean FURTHER over. STILL no hole. More puzzled I sit back up and yell to my brother if he can see the hole. He says, yes.

I hop off the boat and walk around the dock to look at the side of the boat. Yep, the hole is there. My brother is even sticking his finger out of it and wiggling it around.

There are obviously foul spirits at play. Is this some sort of Brigadoon hole?!!

I re-boarded the boat having marked the exact position on the deck that should correspond to the hole.

Attempt three. I lean further than ever before. My legs are barely keeping me on the deck. STILL NO HOLE.

I sit up.

Then my brother yells, "When you lean over, the boat rocks, and the hole is right on the waterline."


So I reached again and he flipped his finger around in the water, so I could hear it. Through-hull went in with no problems. Got it sealed up with 4200.


Not really.

(Beware: These are the types of stories you end up with when you buy a project instead of something ready to sail!)

newportermike 07-19-2012 05:41 PM

Re: Tell us yer Sea Stories
I refused to get on a dinghy one night after we had been drinking on board after a long day of (sober sailing). My buddies went ashore in the dinghy for dinner and they got back safe and sound and of course heckled us for being Pu**ies etc. Next day my buddy Conrad related a story that I will never forget. They had been out on their 36' Pearson all day and returned to New Bedford. Some heavy drinking ensued and at around one am, two of the girls on board expressed their wish to be ferried back to the dock via dinghy. He reluctantly did so, returned to the boat and as he alighted from dinghy it slipped away and he ended up in the water. His brother was on board,heard the splash and came to pull him aboard, which went fine. Now they have to go after the dinghy, so they fire up the engine, unhook from the mooring and begin to set off towards it, BUT did not realize there was a line trailing in the water which promptly gets (you guessed it) twisted around the prop. So now out of control at night in the harbor. Conrad in desperation decides to jump off the bow and reattach the line to the mooring...WHICH HE DOES! All seems to end well (except of course they lost the darn dinghy) and they go to sleep. Only to wake up in the morning to the sound of the keel bouncing off some rocks. The mooring line, it turns out was not properly secured and the boat started to drift in the middle of the night.......along the way it picks up TWO lobster pots and now they are almost aground. So......they call for a tow, which comes to the rescue , but as Conrad tells it, "you should have seen the looks on the commercial fishermen as we got towed in with the lobster pots attached". Moral of the story? Drinking and boating led to many bad decisions, they are lucky that it did not turn out worse!

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