Monday, September 5, 2016

Sailing with whales

Here I am, relaxing, listening to the wind shaking the trees, waiting for the first wave of rain from tropical storm Hermine... and contemplating last week's adventure.

Last winter I took met Diane and Steve and took them for a sail on Dorado. (Here is the post). They enjoyed it enough that they bought a Morgan 323 and have based it in Provincetown, MA... and invited us out last Sunday. A new boat to check out: sweet!

The boat has lots more exterior wood than mine and, while mine is gray, their's is beautifully varnished.
The simpler rigging system delights me. Fewer holes in the deck for the shrouds means fewer possible leaks. The main halyard and winch sit on the mast rather than being lead back to the cockpit: some folks prefer to have lines lead to the cockpit so they can handle things there, but I typically drop my mainsail right after I grab the mooring, so it is actually more convenient to have things secured to the mast.... and there is less friction and opportunity for tangles and tripping. Nice.

So we loaded our gear aboard, cast off the lines, and motored out of the harbor. Once clear of the main traffic, we raised sails in the light breeze and headed out.

Pretty soon Steve started calling out "whale", although I certainly couldn't see what his Dolphin Fleet trained eyes had picked out.
But pretty quickly we got close enough that even I could see them: first a fin whale..
then a young humpback splashing with great enthusiasm...
then more fin whales and some minke whales. Very satisfying.

And then the wind began to pick up. We loved it, but after things began to tumble around and it became hard to move about the boat, we decided to sacrifice 10% of our speed for a 75% gain in comfort: we put in a reef (very easy in their rig).

As we sailed back toward the harbor, we noticed a beach with lots of folks wearing flesh-colored bathing suits, although we were to far away to pick out any details other than "flesh-colored". A birthday suit counts as a bathing suit, right?

Back at the harbor, Steve and Diane showed us that some folks had taken salvaged beach cottages ("camps") and put them on barges, making them into delightful houseboats... and then docked their fleet alongside. Pretty darned cool.

By the time we had tied up to the dock and unloaded, the sunset made everything golden.
We drove home, ate a snack, and fell into bed and instantly asleep. Another day seized!

1 comment:

  1. What a day! What great sights. Always love seeing whales, but also a nude beach and those beach cottage barges. Fabulous.