It’s the end of the sailing season, things starting to get cold It’s time to head back to Loyalist Cove in Bath, Ontario to have our boat hauled out. We spread it out over three days.
Weather wasn’t great, we arrived in Cobourg and greeted by a wet, cool day with some interesting looking clouds coming in from the West.
Did the usual dock walk and admired some of the other boats. This one, named Danu II, anchored is going somewhere to be lifted out, the mast is already down. Looks like they are using their spin pole as a temporary mast.
The weather wasn’t great, but we were happy to be back on the boat. Our dinghy hangs on an angle to try and let the water drain. I think a cover would be a good investment.
We were treated to a beautiful sunset that night in Cobourg as we huddled inside the warmth of our cockpit enclosure. I honestly hate it, I don’t like sailing in a bubble. However, times like this I take a moment to appreciate it.
Cobourg to Murray Canal
It’s another lazy start. Make some coffee, lounge around, have some breakfast. We are in no rush. The weather was unpredictable and too cold for an overnight sail using the southern passage to Waupoos. We eventually leave just before noon on October 3 and head towards the Murray Canal.
It was a wet and cold, even colder as we go off shore. We were fighting with shifting winds near shore and decided to head south to try and find some consistent wind. We raised the main sail using our new technique of having someone at the mast and it was up under a minute (a new record for us). Our proud moment was short lived, our first tack caught the genoa sheet on our starboard bow cleat. Cleared it and the line then quickly got caught up in our port cleat. Cleared it again and we were on our way!
It was foggy with misty rain. East South East winds were light, 6 – 10 knots. We now have our full rain gear on now. But our sails are up, we are happy! Yes… before you say it, I see it now, “more halyard!”.
Now that the sails are set and we are heading in the right direction, Lori takes a quick nap in the cockpit.
The fog starts to lift, visibility around 2 nautical miles. Didn’t see any other boats. We did hear one motorboat in distance.
At 2:15 the wind shifts and is now on our nose. We decide to start up the motor and drop the sails. It’s a bit bumpy and not having sails up made it worse. Lori and my stomach feeling a bit off. But maybe it was something we ate or drank the night before?
We turn the corner and head into Presqui’le bay. Keeping an eye out for weeds, it wasn’t as bad as we’ve seen before.
We enter the canal and do a quick 180 and tie up on the northern wall. Winds were predicted to be coming in from the North West overnight.
Hours underway: 6 hours 7 minutes Distance: 28.2 nautical miles Average speed: 4.6 knots Max speed: 6.3 knots
Murray Canal to Grassy Point
There was a bit of wind overnight but it was calm and quiet on the wall. Only slightly disturbed by some kids with flashlights wandering by late at night. They were laughing and having fun and ignored us as they walked to the end of the pier and back and were gone within 10 mins.
It was another wet morning, here’s our view of the wall through our portlight window.
Leave at 10:27am.
It was a quiet day, we saw one westbound sailboat in the canal.
The first swing bridge, Brighton, went smoothly and we paid our $5 on the way through. The second swing bridge, Carrying Place, has someone new that wasn’t as clear on updates or directions as we went through but it still went smoothly.
I had a work meeting I needed to attend. Lori takes the helm and is left alone in the cockpit for an hour, navigating the narrow channels East of the Murray Canal. Kept the motor going as the wind was hitting us on the nose and slowing our Speed Over Ground (SOG) to 5 knots.
A large powerboat goes screaming past us as we go under the bridge, it then does a 180 and screams past us a second time heading back in the same direction it was coming from. It didn’t bother us, we raise the sails and have a good sail with two tacks. But then we decided to turn the motor back on as we got into a narrower area rather than continuing the beat against the wind.
As we near Sommerville, the wind is now coming from behind. We raise the sails now a nice downwind sail with speeds between 4.6 and 5 knots. By 5:30pm the wind died right down. We were drifting at 1.8 – 2.2 knots. Decided to start the motor so we can get to our next anchorage at Grassy Point before dark. It was only three nautical miles away and running the engine means we are going to have warm water for a shower when we get there!
By 6:51pm we were comfortably sitting in our warm cockpit, anchor set and enjoying a beer.
Time underway: 8 hours 23 minutes Distance: 26.7 nautical miles Average speed: 3.2 knots Maximum speed: 6.7 knots
Grassy Point to Loyalist Cove
It was a windy and bumpy night on anchor. We were well protected but you can see the North East winds kept us bouncing around in one spot overnight.
We love our Mantis anchor! It has definitely has given us more confidence and it has provided us with restful nights during rough weather. We still keep an anchor alarm running and I do still automatically wake up a few times in the night to poke my head out to make sure everything is good.
The app I use to keep track of our distances, Nebo, failed me on this day and didn’t start tracking until we were almost half way through our trip. I’m guessing we left around 11am. It was partially cloudy and we immediately raised the sails and took advantage of the nice light NE winds to push us gently South towards Picton
We always seem to get some interesting weather as we make the turn near Adophustown. If there’s any wind we now reef early before making that turn, just in case. That day, the wind shifted 90 degrees on us and then died right down. You can see it on the map above as we make a 90 degree turn South just to keep the sails from flogging. We started up the motor and dropped the sails. As we head North East towards Kingston the wind shifts again and starts to strengthen. Sails back out near Bongard Corners.
As we go through the gap, winds drop right down, we start to drift and consider putting on the motor. The wind then shifts again, coming right at us on our nose and picks up. We decide this is our last chance to sail, so we are going to sail. Tacking a few times to get to our destination. Boat heeled right over, but we are now confident and having fun.
Sad to think we will now be spending the winter off the boat, and in the Spring our training starts all over again. We will be nervous and cautious and slowly build up our confidence and skills all over again.
We hear from our friends, Dave and Regina, who are already at Loyalist Cove and arrive at 6:44pm, just in time to join them for dinner.
Here’s Foggy in her slip at Loyalist Cove.
Tomorrow, we get ready for lift out.