Today we get to feel all posh by anchoring our sailboat out in front of a winery and taking our inflatable to shore to meet up with some friends.

We started off at Kerr Bay on the North side of Amherst Island, we thought we had lots of time. So it was another lazy start. Our poor genoa had a few more rips develop so we took a bit of time to patch. It’s looking more like a patchwork quilt every day.

We hauled up anchor at 10am. Winds started off light, coming from the South so we motor sailed comfortably at 6 knots. We tried turning off the motor for a bit and were getting about 3 knots. Normally this is good enough for us, it’s more about the journey rather than the destination. But today was different. We had a destination and a deadline. Not a good combination, wrecks the sailing mojo. We started up the engine again to make our appointment.

Date: July 31, 2020 
Distance: 13.1 NM
Duration: 2 hours 16 minutes
Weather: Sunny, warm, light winds from South

It was a beautiful day to sail with light winds.

Playing around with the lines, trying to see how flat I can make our main for motor sailing.

As we leave the North Channel and turn South to enter the Upper Gap we see the Lennox Generation Station to the North of us. It is a distinctive landmark for the Upper Gap and is an oil/natural gas electricity generation station used to supplement peak times owned by Ontario Power Generation.

We continue into Prince Edward Bay toward Waupoos and pass a landmark appropriately named “The Rock” South-West of Mary’s Cove.

A few other boats with no deadlines sailing in Prince Edward Bay.

We arrive at the winery and see one other sailboat already anchored out front.

The slope of the anchorage was steep so we had to get close to shore for shallower depth and shorter anchor rode. Still overly cautious getting this close to shore. Water was clear and could easily see the bottom for a good spot to drop the anchor.

We cleaned ourselves up and put on some of our freshest smelling clothes then jumped into our inflatable (we still need to come up with a cool name for it) and headed to the winery dock. This felt pretty cool, showing up in a sailboat. But someone else had a fancier way to show up. A beautiful black helicopter flies by, comes back, hovers and then lands in the field next to the winery.

We were nervous leaving our boat unattended. We anchored too far to the East to be able to clearly see it from the winery.

We had to walk up the street and double check it was still there. Next time I would anchor directly in front of dock or just a bit West, not too show off, but just to alleviate the stress making it easier to see.

As we walk around the winery, we are definitely reminded of the concerns around COVID-19. As a boater, moving from location to location, we are extremely cautious. Always wearing our masks on shore and constantly sanitizing our hands.

We explored the vineyards.

The smells from the smokers were making me hungry.

We meet up with our friends and sat down for some nice beverages and food.

After round one of eating, we explored and then wandered up the street to the County Cider Company. Which makes Waupoos Premium Cider. I’m a bit confused on all the names for the same thing but the cider is good and the wood fired pizza is even better.

Dining is outside only, with a walk up counters for food and drinks. It’s a beautiful spot high up on the hill overlooking the water and vineyards.

Later that night we say goodbye to our friends and head back to the boat. It’s a clear night with an almost full moon and we’ve decided to make our first short night passage.

Following the Moon to Halfmoon Bay

Yes, it’s a bit cheesy title, but fitting. We really did head toward the moon to get to our destination, Halfmoon Bay.

We’ve been talking about our first trip at night for some time now. Waiting for the perfect opportunity and tonight seemed to work. Clear, calm, almost full moon and a destination that we’ve been to before.

Date: July 31, 2020 8:40pm
Distance: 5.5 NM
Duration: 1 hour 13 minutes
Weather: Calm, almost full moon

As we left our spot in front of the winery we were treated to a beautiful sunset. There was little wind so we motored the whole way.

Behind us the sun was setting, our running lights illuminating the dinghy on our davits.

Up ahead is our destination, half moon bay. It’s after 9pm but the moon is giving us plenty of light to see.

We arrived at our destination and had to take a few tries to get our anchor to set properly. Tomorrow we will learn why it was so difficult.

Travelling at night is a beautiful experience. We were the only ones out with the moon and the stars. Definitely will do this again, and maybe with the sails even if we are only doing a few knots it will be so peaceful.

Next story from this trip: Little Bluff Park and Lost in the Dark