We passed by this large anchorage a number of times and never really noticed it. Today we finally discovered it and it is a perfect stopping point.

Our day started with us leaving Picton. We saw a strange looking and loud boat motor by.

We see it again a bit later as we untie from our mooring ball.

I haven’t seen too many float planes out on Lake Ontario. I used to see them all the time on the West Coast of Vancouver Island. Now I’m wondering, what are the ColRegs for avoiding a plane? Now I’m going to have to look it up. My guess is to treat them just like any other motor vessel while they are on the water under power.

Motored out the narrow passage from Picton and heading North into “Long Reach”. We have a bit of a breeze from the stern and nervously put out half of our Genny. Floated North with the wind pushing us at 3 to 4 knots. But we are ok with that. It was too hectic last time we went through here.

Turned the corner at Napanee, and now wind was directly on the nose. We started the engine and furled the Genny.

Oncoming Sailboat Discussion

Motored for a while then put up both sails. Pinched the wind near North Shore trying to squish past the point. We saw a sailboat in the distance with both sails going downwind heading straight at us. I wasn’t able to pinch any more, to the left, to avoid and I can’t fall off, to the right, and risk going into shallows.

Call out on radio. No response. Call out a second time and told them I’m going to have to tack in front of them. We tack and lock back as they drift by. They didn’t appear to be watching. Their deck lines covered in laundry I don’t think they could see anything.

OK, I know what someone is going to say. Yes, technically they were on a starboard reach and we were on port tack so they were the stand on vessel. Agree, and that’s why we tacked. But at the same time I had two issues at the time:

  • show some common courtesy, they could have easily turned to starboard, right, a little
  • have your radio on

If I saw a sailboat beating upwind in a narrow channel, while I had almost full maneuverability to give them some space, I would. We probably could have held our course and snuck in front of them, but I didn’t want to take a chance. So we tacked a few extra times to get to our destination.

What do you think. Use the comments. Would love to have a polite and civil conversation about this. Keeping in mind, I believe that technically the other vessel was the stand on vessel.

Yes, I ranted on a bit about this. But really, it’s not a big deal. We avoided each other with plenty of space to spare. Now let’s get back to the beautiful and relaxing part of the story.

Anchoring in Sandy Cove For The First Time

The sail was beautiful through the Bay of Quinte. We had to beat against the wind, tacking back and forth a number of times but it was good practice for us. We were getting back into the groove again. We see one other sailboat behind us.

I think I need to work on my sail trim, we are not really pointing that close to the wind. You can see our tacks are about 120-130 degrees.

We started the engine as we approached Sandy Cove to find a suitable place to stop. Lori prepared the anchor on the bow.

We saw a lot of boats, but there’s plenty of space. This is a unique anchorage for us. It’s a large wide open area that has a mostly flat bottom with 5 to 14 foot depths throughout.

Lot’s of great looking boats in the bay to admire.

I crack open a beer, a Notorious Juicy from Trenton, a gift from a friend. And we prepare a quick and delicious gourmet meal, Mac and Cheese. Everything is gourmet on the boat.

A few minutes into our dinner I take the beer I just showed you above and dump it all over our cockpit cushion. Yup, this along with my daily dump of coffee is one way to force yourself to clean the boat one spill section at a time.

Ahh well, we had a beautiful night at anchor. We will definitely use this anchorage again!

Sailboat Stats

Picton to Sandy Bay
Weather: clear but slightly overcast, varying winds throughout day
Distance: 26 nautical miles
Total time: 6 hours 6 minutes
Average speed: 4.0 knots
Max speed: 6.4 knots
Time sailing: 4 hours 46 minutes
Time motoring 1 hours 20 minutes

Everything went smoothly. Just like previous lengthy trips. Lori and I seem to find our groove toward the end of a multi day trip.