Foggy is back on the water and we take two days to rush her back home from Loyalist Cove to Cobourg. We are rusty sailors and had a few interesting adventures.
With several two hour drives to the yard completed earlier, we were almost prepared for boat launch this year.
Had a few last minute projects that were completed the day before. I will most likely create separate posts for each of these projects:
• Fiberglass rudder
• Replace cockpit drain pipes
• Fix engine blower vent
• Re-attach spreaders to mast
• Install Tides Marine sail track in mast
Also have a new toy to get some different angles of the boat. Stay tuned for more pics/videos soon! As long as I don’t crash it! 🙂
Can you find Foggy in the picture above? Here’s a better one.
Day before launch
We spent the day getting the mast ready and putting in our brand new mainsail track system from Tides Marine (https://www.tidesmarine.com/sailtrack/intst_overview). I will write a separate post on this experience. But in short, unless your mast gate opening is as large as they suggest, it’s not an easy experience. It was a frustrating day and after several hours we were ready to just throw the track in the water and walk away.
Another boat being launched gets off course and loses their rudder on a rock near shore. We ran over to assist but the staff at Loyalist seem to have Spidey senses. They had their workboat on scene by the time I got to the dock.
Loyalist took great care of us, and we confirmed the lift in schedule. We were officially set for 9am launch. They said they didn’t have any other launches that day so we could go in anytime.
We were up early and ready to go. I notice that the staff was right next to our boat, dropping off the boat that got into trouble the day before. Since they were there, I suggested they could grab our boat if it made things easier for them.
This simple offer created a chain of events that led us to be a bit rushed with getting everything ready and Foggy was in the water with her mast stepped just a few hours later. Unfortunately during the rush we ran out of rigging tape for one of the ends of our spreaders and we messed up one of our lazy jack lines. Looks like one of us needs to be hoisted up the mast later.
We spent the day lazily getting the boat ready. This was one of Lori’s few days off so we didn’t feel like working too hard. We were back and forth between home and Loyalist a few times. During this time, we found a few interesting places in the area between Bath, ON and Kingston, ON.
- Marine Outfitters – a very well stocked boat supply store. And you can finally can go inside with a mask. However, not much to see inside. They are setup mostly for online orders. It’s now my favourite go to place for marine supplies.
- Bella Bistro – about 10 minutes towards Kingston, right across the street from Marine Outfitters. It doesn’t look like much from the outside, picnic tables under a tent, but the food was incredible!
- Soup Chef – looks like a regular chip truck parked in the lot in a park but it will surprise you with amazing food. Tasty soups and one of the best poutines I’ve ever had!
We bend the sails on, in the wind, with the bow downwind. With our lazy jacks fouled in our top spreader it was near impossible to stack our sails on the boom. We eventually got it, it wasn’t pretty but it was secure. We quickly hide our mess with our sail cover. This was the start of us no longer caring if things were not perfect we needed to get the boat to Cobourg within a few days.
Everyone on the docks at Loyalist is friendly. One sailor with a nice looking Nonsuch sailboat calls over to me to say how he knew about the CS34s and commented that they are rare but he knew what they were like inside and really liked them. Another sailor poked their head out when we were bending on the sails and commented, looking great! We met a nice couple, Brian, Debbie and their dog Bella. They own a beautiful blue hulled 47′ sailboat, Isa.
Our first day heading home
Weather doesn’t look good but we had a schedule (I hate those). We decide to take the inside northern route since it’s supposed to storm, hitting a peak around 4pm. Boat loaded up and ready to go early in the morning.
Water levels are low right now, take note of weeds in pic above. As we leave the marina I follow what I thought was the common route but I notice our speed slowing down. We eventually come to a complete stop in the weeds. I reverse back a few feet, adjust to right a bit and give it another try. Much better! Stay close to the docks as you enter/leave Loyalist Marina!
We left the cleaning the cockpit until last, it was still very dirty so we took a bit of time while motoring to use a bucket to grab some of the fast moving water under our boat to clean.
My favourite ferries on this route did their usual criss-cross right in front of us as we approached. This time it was close but at a comfortable distance. I’ve learned to aim for the center of the channel to cross rather than trying to sneak by them closer to land. They move pretty quick.
We decide to unfurl our new jib for the first time. Such an exciting moment!
Foggy heeled over and quickly picked up speed. Headed North up Long Reach the wind gusts were getting stronger. We furled 10% but still overpowered. While on a broad reach running down wind, the gusts shifted and the jib backwinded. We decided to jibe and completely forgot how to sail. We released the jib sheet and the jib promptly folded forward of the stay. It was a mess. Wind now howling. Started the engine and spun the boat around to head to wind. Had to put the furling line on a winch to slowly twist it back onto the furler. It was mayhem. We were yelling over the noise of the sail flapping, lines slapping, and wind howling. We couldn’t even hear if the engine was running or not. Not our proudest moment.
We turned back on course, gusts still heeling the boat over as if we had full sails. And continued up Long Reach. Turned West at Mohawk Bay (Napanee) and now straight into wind. I watched the green lateral buoy and we were barely moving past it. I look at our speed drop from 7 knots to 3.. 2.5.. 2 knots. You can see our not so useful wind sensor in the video showing us — for speed.
I look to our right and I see a red canoe floating by, must have blown off a dock. We scan the area ahead for the next 15 minutes looking for anyone that may have fallen out, just to be certain. Looking back at the green lateral buoy, it was still next to us. Some quick math revealed it would take over eight hours at this speed to get to our next destination. We still needed to go through the Bay of Quinte where it would be rougher. Decided it was time to find a place to hide. Hay Bay was too far back. We knew our friends had anchored in this area before to hide from a storm. We text them and find out about Grassy Point.
We turned around to Grassy Point and snuggled in close to land. It was better but still gusty. Dropped anchor in 12 feet of water. With engine in neutral we quickly gained reverse momentum and the anchor line goes taught. Saw that the anchor line snuck under our Mantis Mate and couldn’t get it to budge. I foolishly put my hand under the line to try and pull it out and the line quickly snapped taught again. I could have really done some damage to my hand! We dropped 10′ of line to give us some slack and quickly freed it from under the Mantis Mate. Snap, the line is taught again and the anchor is firmly buried. We love our Mantis anchor!
The wind is uncomfortable and gusty, we are anchor sailing back and forth and I’m looking at the weather reports for when this will be over. It’s supposed to die down at 8pm. Our wind sensor wasn’t working, again, so I have no idea what the wind speeds were but local reports said 25-30 knots. It felt like more to me and can’t imagine what it would be like out in 40-60 knot winds! We have a long ways to go before we will be comfortable in that.
Used a new app, Anchor by Pomacanthus, since my previous favourite Anchor app is no longer supported on Android. It shows us doing a nice arc around our anchor. Can see our anchor is holding well.
We sit down in the cockpit and reflect on the day, with a beer. It was a terrible day on the water. We forced ourselves to go when we knew we shouldn’t have. We forgot the basics of sailing. We did some stupid things that almost seriously injured ourselves and we beat up the boat. Despite our mistakes, nobody was hurt, no damage done, and we were still talking with each other.
As usual after a good storm, we were treated to a nice sunset.
Day 2 – Grassy Point to Cobourg Marina
The temperature dropped suddenly overnight. Got up to close the hatches, it was cold! Toasted bagels with cream cheese and two big mugs of coffee/tea in the morning. Wind shifted slightly, you can see how much we anchor sailed in our anchor alarm app.
All of our electronics were suddenly working perfectly again. The sporadic availability of these instruments is getting frustrating. I’m now thinking there may be a random power issue causing these issues. Our fresh water pump does make our lights dim slightly. Something to investigate. Let me know in the comments if you have any suggestions.
It was going to be a long day, we get up early and set off. It was cold, skies were overcast and there was little wind. We round Forrest Island for a second time but this time we felt like a speedboat now that we could go faster than 2 knots!
We unfurl our jib a second time and spend a bit of time adjusting and playing with the leech tensioner and adjusting the jib sheet cars fore and aft to see how it changes the shape of the jib. We were getting some flapping at top edge of the leech. Wind shifts to right on our nose and we don’t have time for tacking so we furl the jib. It was much easier in lighter winds than yesterday! And motor through.
Our sailing skills were slowly coming back. We did a bit better than we did yesterday.
Heading west under the bridge by Belleville there’s some confusion with the construction. I’m not really sure what’s going on with the lateral buoys they are bunched up next to the construction on the South side of the bridge. We’ve been under this bridge a number of times I just head through the opening I’m used to going through because I know there’s enough height for our mast there.
The Murray Canal was empty. We were the only boat going through.
Quickly breezed by both swing bridges and tie up on the wall at the West entrance to the Murray Canal. The water levels are low and it was a big step up to get onto the wall. I check on our engine and clean up the oil leak. Yes our engine is still leaking a bit of oil. Finding a good diesel mechanic with time to work on your boat seems to be just as likely as spotting a unicorn. Lori makes some delicious warm curry for lunch.
There are lots of swans and weeds in Presquile Bay right now.
Our CS40 friends warn us that they got tangled up in the weeds in Presquile Bay so Lori heads up on the bow to keep a watch. See my post, Weeds in Presquile Bay. The wheel starts to shake a bit, I know I’m picking up weeds. It’s nothing like what we encountered in Loyalist Cove but it’s getting worse. We do a few stops/starts and adjustments. A few times backing up we see the big clump of chewed up weeds kicking out our starboard side. We slowly make our way out to Lake Ontario.
Lake Ontario was clear, cold, and bumpy with the wind on our nose we motored the entire way. The water temperature was scary cold at 8 degrees Celsius and it mostly had an ominous black and dark grey colour. Not the inviting teal colour it usually has.
Other than finding ways to stay warm in the cockpit, the trip back was mostly uneventful.
We had one more exciting adventure on our way back to harbour. We practiced our radio skills with Prescott Coast Guard Radio and Foggy towed a 37 foot boat back into harbour. I’ll save this story for a separate post.
We arrive back at our home port of Cobourg, tie up next to a brand new neighbour. It was a long trip with little sleep, we were exhausted. I’m feeling really bad that our new sails were left this way but we just didn’t have the energy to do anything about them at that point. Plus we had another 3-4 hours of driving ahead of us. We had to pick up our car in Loyalist Cove.
It’s funny how much joy the above picture gives us. Just knowing Foggy is there waiting for our next adventure makes us so happy.