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SailAway
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I recently did a.2 week trip from Maine to NC the first 2 weeks in September. The weather was great, the days were long and the marinas and anchorages all had plenty of room. It was a great trip and it leaves me dreaming of the next trip like it.

What I wonder based on that experience is why does it seem everyone waits until October to make the trip South? Shorter days, colder temps and quite crowded from what we were told. Why don't more people do this trip in September? Extending the season in the North as long as possible? Avoiding the statistically worst month for hurricanes? Something else?
 

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For some it's an insurance constraint. Some insurance companies want their insured boats to stay above or below a certain latitude until hurricane season is (on paper) over. For some others, the October SSCA gam on the Rhode River followed by the Annapolis Sailboat show a week later is a traditional meet-up with cruising friends made over the years before the pack heads south.
 

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For many, including me, it's not an insurance issue - it's bugs. Lots of bugs along the ICW, noseeums, skeeters, gnats, black flies, you name it, they're out there awaiting your flesh to arrive. Usually, after the first week in October, these critters pretty much begin to hibernate, but this is not a rule etched in stone. Therefore, I purchased a replacement, screen enclosure for a backyard gazebo, which fit perfectly over my bimini and down to the gunwales. I used some six ounce fishing sinkers to hold it in place, and wallah - not critters. Worked like a charm.

Just about everyone I met during my trip south asked where they could find the screening - Walmart and the cost was $29. Later during the trip, I saw at least three more sailboats with the same setup.

I also found a great way to keep the noseeums from making their way through my hatch screens and porthole screens. I soaked a rag with Avon Skin So Soft, wiped it on the screening, and the noseeums would fly right up to the screen, but never tried to venture more than about an inch closer before turning away. It also kept spiders at bay as well.

Cheers,

Gary :cool:
 

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I also found a great way to keep the noseeums from making their way through my hatch screens and porthole screens. I soaked a rag with Avon Skin So Soft, wiped it on the screening, and the noseeums would fly right up to the screen, but never tried to venture more than about an inch closer before turning away. It also kept spiders at bay as well.

Cheers,

Gary :cool:
Now wait a minute . . . are you trying to tell us that you can SEE the Noseeums???
 

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Yep, you can see them when the sun is between you and them. At first I thought my eyeglasses were just dirty, that is until they began gnawing on my arms. They're about the size of a pin head, but I think they have the jaws of a steam shovel. ;) OUCH!

Cheers,

Gary :cool:
 
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