Sunday, September 5, 2010

Good Food & Good Company

Sunday, Sept. 6, 2010
I took Hank & Rocky - the dogs - to the beach so they could do their "dog stuff." Of course they ran all over the beach with Hank almost barking continuously. I'm sure other boats anchored in the bay wanting to sleep in enjoyed hearing dog barking. Oh well it was after 0800 anyway. Dave & Mary rowed over and watched the dogs play too.

Afterwards I went over and enjoyed a cup of coffee on the MV Explorer with Rob & Sandy. As I said earlier, I hadn't seen Sandy in over 30 years so we had a lot of catching up to do. We talked of then and now, and of course about boats. I invited them over for our traditional boat breakfast of corned beef hash.

Dave & Mary came, as well as Rob & Sandy. The galley was full with six (6) adults and two dogs. Kim had made a healthy batch of corned beef hash that was excellent. We sat around, supped together and chatted. It was a great time. By 1200 Dave & Mary left to make preparations to leave back to Olympia; they were going to sail back. Sandy & Rob stayed aboard for a bit longer and we continued to chat. Finally we bid them adieu and we too made preparations for leaving.

The wind was blowing about 12 knots from the SW but the sky seemed to be clearing. Although I knew that rain was on the way. It was tempting to stay another night at McMicken but we decided to head home. We weighed anchor at 1320. We cruised down Case Inlet, following the eastern shore of Hartstine Island until we spied the SV Mary O' Farrell under full sail in Dana Passage. Dave was enjoying the wind and a fair current. Prior to meeting the SV Mary O'Farrell I was doing 8 knots. I slowed down, circled the Mary O' Farrell just for fun, and then we motored on. There were quite a few sailboats out all enjoying the fair winds. It seemed that as we motored down Budd Inlet the wind abated a bit. There was no sign of any of the boating crowds because the tug boat races were long over. All that remained were the racing course markers. Kim met me at the dock because we had the Zipper. We got into our slip at 1400. We quickly unloaded the boat and then I sent Kim on her way back over to East Bay Marina so I could haul the Zipper.

It was a fun Labor Day weekend that makes boating oh so much fun and memorable. I really enjoyed meeting up with both the MV Explorer and the SV Mary O'Farrell.

Stats: 13.6 nm, average speed 5.1 knots, running time 2:39, ending engine hours 6076.1

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Zipperin' to Allyn

Saturday, Sept. 4, 2010
Woke to cloudy skies and a brisk SW wind. Although for most of the night it was calm. After breakfast I cleaned up the Zipper. It was still filthy from our recent summer trip up the coast. So with lots of elbow grease and some scrubby pads I made her presentable.

We then went over to the SV Mary O'Farrell and picked up Dave & Mary for a Zipper trip to Allyn. We had a full crew contingent on the Zipper - Dave, Mary, Hank, Rocky, Kim and myself. The cruise up to Allyn was smooth for the most part with only rippled seas. We tied up to the Allyn dock and walked into town hoping to get some "Bubba's Big Burgers" but found it closed. So we walked farther down to "Leonard K's" and ordered some burgers and fish & chips to go. We walked back to the Port of Allyn beach front park and ate. While we ate we noticed that the wind from the SW was building - it was no longer rippled but about a 1' chop. We boarded the Zipper and started out neglected to notice that Hank's dog life jacket had been blown out of the boat. We flew S down Case Inlet at 20 knots riding over the tops of the chop.

We motored over into Jarrell's Cove where I was hoping to meet up with Sandy and Rob in the MV Explorer. Jarrell's Cove was quite crowded with all the dock space and mooring buoys taken. As we were motoring into Jarrell's Cove the MV Explorer had come in behind us. They looked for anchoring options and I encouraged them to join us in anchoring over at McMicken Island. Fortunately they decided to change their plans and join us. The wind had abated some for our quick cruise from Jarrell's Cove back to McMicken Island.

The MV Explorer arrived about 45 minutes later and anchored just behind the Independence. I hadn't seen Sandy in about 30 years and it was good to re-meet and catch up. The wind was brisk and cool from the SW.

Dave & Mary from the SV Mary O' Farrell came over for supper at 1900. We had a multi-course meal - smoked salmon appetizer, then my grilled spicy Vindaloo pork chops, corn on the cob, finished off with spicy red pepper scallop fettucine. It was a fun feast.

Zipper stats: 23 nm, average speed 15.1 knots, running time 1:42

Friday, September 3, 2010

McMicken Island Bound

Friday, Sept. 3, 2010
We launched the Zipper over at East Bay and then I drove the truck & empty trailer over to the marina and met Kim. She had Hank the dog as her crew mate for the short voyage, and I had Rocky the little demon dog for mine. This was going to be his first boat trip adventure.

We left the West Bay dock at 1450 for a Labor Day weekend trip to McMicken Island. Weather is mostly sunny and warm but the barometer is falling and there's mare's tails in the sky. I am reminded of the saying, "Mares tails and mackerel scales make lofty ships carry low sails." This means the weather is going to change. But for now it's a beautiful day. There's a 10+ knot breeze out of the WSW. Olympia is crowded because of the Harbor Days celebration and Tug Boat races.

When we left the tide was high, or near high, so we cruised straight up Budd Inlet instead of following the channel and going W around Olympia Shoal. We still stayed well E of the Olympia Shoal. Several other boats were plotting the same course which generally should be avoided because of shoal water. There were lots of boats out and boat traffic - boats coming into Olympia and Budd Inlet and boats leaving. We rounded Boston Harbor, made our way up Dana Passage and then N into Case Inlet. The cruise was quite enjoyable and uneventful.

We dropped the hook at 1730 and in 25' of water well W of McMicken Island, or about half-way between the island and the Hartstine Island shore. We were well N of the tombolo that connected McMicken Island to Hartstine and with the tide so high you saw no sign of it. There's a brisk SW breeze blowing through the anchorage. There's six boats here not counting the Independence.

After arriving I noticed that my depth sounder was not always working. I checked it and found that it was "chock-a-block" full of mussels to about the size of a volleyball. I layed down on the swim step and removed the little bastards - "no more free rides for you!"

We had a leisurely evening waiting for our friends in the SV Mary O'Farrell to arrive. They arrived just before 2000 and we met for a quick drink but we were all pretty tired, so the event was short lived. The SV Mary O'Farrell was anchored about 100 yards W of us.

Stats: 13.0 nm, average speed 5.4 knots, running time 2:44, ending engine hours 6073.2