Shelburne to Seal Cove


Woke up around 10:30 - a good nights sleep! left the mooring buoy and headed in to the marina. The guy in the next boat takes a line. He's Pierre, been here a while. He's left twice already, first time caught a line on his prop, 2nd time hit a gale and then turned back. His girlfriend was spooked when he closed the boat up and went below to sleep. The gale cost him his auto-pilot and now he's waiting on a replacement.
Shelburne is a nice little place, I took a walk and found groceries, cool! I'm staying at the Yacht club here and they have a bar. Basically just seems to be an afterwork hangout. Anyway, There's a guy in the yacht club from Houston, here for the summer, has his 2nd home here.
There's also 2 other couples here, looking to make the crossing, one pair in a rather swankey looking catamaran they built themselves. They are heading to florida. The other couple are livaboards also heading to florida. Every one is looking at the weather forecasts, looking for a weather window. We talkabout it a lot. It looks like friday will work, 15 kt easterlies.


Howling northerlies. Spent the day at leisure. Walked to Tim Horton's, now that place was a hopping. Couldn't find the left hand threaded nuts I wanted for my lifelines. I'm not sure any of the locals walk or they just can't estimate distance. Tim's - was according to Mary (works at the marina) a 20 minute walk, took me closer to 45 minutes. Lou's hardware, was supposed to be 15 minutes away, but never found it until day 2 and it was a good 2 miles away.
Anyway the concensus is a friday crossing. Only fly in the ointment was Pierre producing some charts that show horrendous predictions for the Gulf of Maine. Environment Canada, NOAA, and don't agree, but doubts have been raised.

The previous evening discussion with the local yachties reccomend that I look to Maine not NE to take the boat out, cheaper and better services. I couple that info with Pierre's weather forcast and decide to head for Portland not Cape Cod, and not Boston. There is a storm over NY and it should dissapate, if it doesn't the extra north bit will help.

After 2 days I finally get my laundry done. There's a drought here and many of the locals' wells have run dry. The marina has water. They come here.

9/30, 10/1, 10/2

Left about 9:30, no real wind in the bay. Got to the mouth and it was beautiful. 6.5 mph reach, heading offshore and past Brazil Rock. Kept heading south because of the tides and theres reportedly more wind there. Riding through the night was easy, some wind shifts but heading southwest and fair clip.

Saturday, winds picked up in the afternoon and kept climbing, coming out of the east, this wasn't the forecast. Winds had to be over 30 knots (NOAA said 20-30, eventually). The boat hurtled along with just 10 feet of gib showing. The carried on throughout the night. I just set the sail and corrected the Otto the auto pilot every now and then. Oh and by the way its raining too. Visited by dolphins just before nightfall. These are not the gambolling, frolicking dolphins from before, with grey skies and falling light, these are sinister silent dolphins. Fins show, and backs arch, but these are black fins, and black times. They don't play in the bow wave but hang out beside me, weird.

Winds start falling in the morning at last. There are 2 sets of waves running. Large ones from the east, and smaller ones from the north east. Sometimes they meet at the boat and lifts its skirts way too high. While having breakfast, one of these waves took me by surprise, the wind was dropping after all. There is an expression in sailing, "one hand for you, the other for the boat". It specifically does not say "one hand for you and one hand for the oatmeal". I fell, spoon in one hand and oatmeal in the other. Hit my head on the table and cut my eye and nose. Pretty! Didn't have to mop any oatmeal at all. Took a little while to mop the blood and clean myself up. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

The 3rd day on the water was a great day sailing. Wind started to drop in the evening. When the boat speed dropped to less than 2 mph, I had to use power but it was obvious I couldn't make Portland in daylight. I called some marinas but no answer. I have no cruising guide so I headed to Simpson's Harbor, an anchorage. Oh my god! The lobster pot buoys! They are absolutely everywhere. If there was wind I'd much rather sailing through these than motoring, but there is none, so its keep going on power. Wind comes out from the west now so I change my destination to seal cove, an anchorage the other side of Simpsons Island. Can't see shit so its all on the plotter. It worked out and by 9 o'clock I have the anchor down and its holding. Whew! Sleep time!!

I saw whale spouts today. Too far to see the whales but theres spouts going 15 yards into the air. And lots of them too. Saw some later again but never an actual whale.



View from the Clubhouse
Give Up the Oatmeal!