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Old Fart
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I'd like to share three very interesting stories that happened to us this past summer while going down the Washington coast.

First
We hit a whale, or something, while motor sailing at about seven knots at 23:00 hours. We has seen lots of whales earlier that day heading south and about 23:00 hours that evening as we were changing watches, we were cruising along in moderate seas and 15 knot winds when we hit something that sounded like a dull thud. The whole boat shuttered briefly and we, my wife and I, both looked at each other and paused to wait for the other shoe to drop. It didn't fortunately. Nothing else happened so we went on our way.

Second
About 02:30 my wife called me up from down below to help with a large boat she had spotted that seemed to her to be getting pretty close. I saw it and immediately grabbed the helm, swung hard to port and held it there as the 100 foot plus crabbing boat passed close aboard our bow. It had all of it's 1000 watt deck lights on and didn't see us at all. Guess our radar reflector didn't work or no one was watching. They were headed out to sea from Gray's Harbor. I spent some time later that day going over, again, with my wife the method of determing if we are on a collision coarse with another boat.

Third
As we were coming close to the turn into the Columbia River (about 8 miles off shore and 15 miles north of the entrance buoy) I noticed a small bird flying around our boat. It circled several times and then landed on our port side life line. It quickly moved on to the boom vang and stayed there for more than a half hour grooming and resting. Later it began to look for food and water. It drank from water droplets on the deck but wouldn't take any of the crumbled crackers we offered. It even landed on my hand briefly. It stayed with us for almost two hours and only left after the shore became clearly visible. It flew off toward shore.

SV Panacea
 

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Great stories Dwayne! Thanks for posting them.
 

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Things that go bump in the night!

Enjoyed your tales.:)
 

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This little guy landed on board during a delivery from Marsh Harbour to North Carolina in March 2008. He's a brush species (we looked it up after the trip, but I can't recall at the moment), definitely had no business being that far from shore. We were at least 100 miles offshore when he showed up. Appeared very tired and just rested behind the dodger for a while, then flitted around the cabin a little bit. He stayed on board about half an hour and then headed on his way. Hope the little guy made it home safe.

Oops, I'm not allowed to post pictures yet, so you'll have to use your imagination. He was a little brown guy with some yellow on his belly.
 
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