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post #1364 of Old 09-11-2016
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Re: 2016 Sailing Season on the Chesapeake

Great photos and glad to see you got out there.

After a delay caused by TS Hermine and the total failure of my bilge pump discharge hose setup, I finally got underway last Monday. Bounced back and forth between a friend's house up in the Pax River, beyond Point Patience, then to Smith Island and then back to Solomon's to Spring Cove marina to use their pool to escape the 93F degree heat. Due to the heat, we skipped Oxford and returned home a day early.

It took a little over 5 hours to go from Pt. Patience to the dock at Smith Island. Top speed 9.3 kts, average of 6 kts. That was using the working jib and a single reef in the main. The wind and tide were moving with such force that we were nearly swept past the marina and almost made contact with the S.I.V.F.D. fire boat. I managed to get us pinned against some pilings and some tug workers took a line around a piling so that we could pivot around and into our slip.

Smith Island is an incredible place. Tourism and pleasure craft marina services are second fiddle to the work that these people do for survival. When you visit, it's best to think of it as being guests at a residence than customers patronizing a business. You get far better results treating them with courtesy and respect vs. flashing your cash and demanding service.

The island is wild and beautiful. Everything is exposed to the wind and water. It's a tough life there, but I completely understand why islanders stick with it. I had the best damned crab cake I've ever had, in a little diner that the locals frequent for lunch.

Ruke's restaurant and market looks as if it's been long abandoned but it's barely been a year since they shut down. I wish I'd gotten here sooner.

The boat served us flawlessly. The newly stitched dodger gave us some shade, the CruiseAir gave us peace from insects at night and cooled the boat from the low 90's temps. The M30 diesel never skipped a beat and gave excellent economy. I installed a Whale shower sump box and tied it into the bilge discharge. The shower and ice box drain to the sump and it automatically pumps overboard. Nothing goes into the bilge anymore.

Alacrity, 1981 Tartan 33 #168
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