Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay. - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 14 Old 09-13-2016 Thread Starter
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Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

Most boats stick to the beaten path (blue line) when passing between Jericho Bay and the Mt. Desert area on the coast of Maine. With a forecast of 5 to 10 Southwesterly, I couldn't resist heading up this secluded stretch of sailing.



Broad reaching in the light wind - after a few miles, we were the only sailboat in sight(no surprise to us).



Our speed pulsed between 3.5 in the light air and 6 or so knots in the gusts to 10. The wind is muffled as it's coming over the mainland and the water gets flatter as you ascend the bay.

We filled the big hole between our main and mizzen with the mizzen staysail. Our old WP steered very well (with the rudder gain set to 1 or 2) which allowed me to tweak sails and takes pictures. No boat traffic, lobster buoys disappear, it's a relaxing sail.



Toward the end, Long Island (which is truly long) and the mainland begin to close in around you. 12 or 14 miles of beautiful sailing, over too soon.



There was one other boat anchored in the inner harbor. They left the next morning, and we had it all to ourselves.



Have you gotten off the beaten path this season?
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Tom Young sailing a 1961 38' Alden Challenger, CHRISTMAS out of
Rockport, Maine.
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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

Been up that way before sailing out of Mackerel Cove on Swans Island. Just below the blue arrow marking the Casco passage


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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

Was in booth bay. Took a dinghy ride south and went under this little bridge. Then inland up this narrow channel. After a few miles opened up to a lake. Saw eagles, porpoise, a few fish boats but mostly empty. Best dinghy ride ever.
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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

No lobster pots? Nirvana.

We went up (downeast) to Mistake. Nice.
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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

I have friends who live in Blue Hill. Hoping to get up there next summer. Thanks for sharing this! looks like a wonderful sail. Always enjoy your photos Tom!
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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

Tom... Enjoying the new cockpit?

Ron

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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

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Tom... Enjoying the new cockpit?
It's been working out great, Ron. It's amazing how much time you spend in the cockpit of your sailboat, when you think about it.

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Tom Young sailing a 1961 38' Alden Challenger, CHRISTMAS out of
Rockport, Maine.
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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

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No lobster pots? Nirvana.

We went up (downeast) to Mistake. Nice.
Blue Hill Bay is at mouth of the Jericho Bay and the Swans Island area. That area is (in my opinion), the worst maze of lobster buoys on the coast of Maine.

Most are toggled (meaning a secondary buoy is tied to the primary buoy) and with the currents in the area - especially at high tide - the primary buoys are often underwater.

A few miles up Blue Hill Bay, they begin to thin. And currents run very slowly in the bay (ebb and flow only) so they're easy to dodge. About mid way they thin even more and toward the end, there aren't any that I recall.

I assume the lobsters don't go up the bay in numbers due to warmer water and fresh water running in.

Tom Young sailing a 1961 38' Alden Challenger, CHRISTMAS out of
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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

This year it seemed like fewer pots for some reason. I remember years where I felt like I could walk from Swans to the mainland on top of pots alone!


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Re: Off the beaten path: Coasting up Blue Hill Bay.

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Blue Hill Bay is at mouth of the Jericho Bay and the Swans Island area. That area is (in my opinion), the worst maze of lobster buoys on the coast of Maine.
Bingo Jericho Bay and Tootacher Bay are horrible (for East of Schoodic) and the currents & needless use of "toggles" only make it worse.



Quote:
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A few miles up Blue Hill Bay, they begin to thin. And currents run very slowly in the bay (ebb and flow only) so they're easy to dodge. About mid way they thin even more and toward the end, there aren't any that I recall.

I assume the lobsters don't go up the bay in numbers due to warmer water and fresh water running in.
My friend Chris owns a place at the head of Blue Hill Bay on Contention Cove. As long back as I can remember, probably 40+ years of going there, Blue Hill Bay has been sparse on traps. The Northern section being almost entirely devoid.. We love the inner harbor at Blue Hill but we normally sail past and up to Contention Cove to anchor in front of Chris place for a few days.. It really is a tremendous & relaxing sail.. Lots of good spots to anchor up there and you won't see another cruiser for days at a time.

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