JULY--Boat Maintenance, Farewell to our Friends at Well Bottom Cove and Start the Journey North

DISCOVERY was pulled out of the water at Gregg Neck Boatyard for routine maintenance June 26 through July 10. The work that we wanted to complete was one thing---another thing was the weather. Lost 4 days of work because of rain and most other days we were challenged by heat and humidity. Have to admit this period of time was not all work and no play! Attended a party in the Well Bottom Cover neighborhood (Joe and Ronnie's annual cook-out). Also, Karen and Dave Lauser invited us up to their place for Happy Hour and dinner on several occasions.

Splashed back into the water the morning of July 10th. Did laundry and significant provisioning before we started north. Our last night on the Sassafras River, Carl and I prepared a salmon dinner for several friends we met through Dave and Karen Lauser during our stay.

Dropped the mooring line early on July 12 with plans to travel to Chesapeake City at the western end of the Chesapeake & Delaware Canal or to Reedy Island at the eastern end of the canal. Thought about stopping to anchor the night in the Cohansey River but the current was helping us fly down the Delaware Bay so we changed our final destination to Cape May, NJ. A storm front passed over us about one hour outside of Cape May. We were lucky. When the storm was south of us, we could see the lightning and hear the thunder as it approached. However, the worst part seemed to part north of us--we experienced dark skies, some wind and a quick rain storm. Again, we considered ourselves very lucky.

Stayed in Cape May one day to celebrate the "First Anniversary of our Cruise". It doesn't seem possible that one year ago we left Pentwater, MI to head to the Bahamas. Since leaving Pentwater we have traveled 4927 nautical miles, visited interesting and scenic places and met so many nice people. To celebrate we went to the Lobster House for calamari, mussels and shrimp.

From Cape May we motored to Atlantic City in the fog. This was the first time it was so foggy that we needed our radar to navigate. At times, the visibility was less than 1/8 mile. The fog cleared by 10:00 AM. Anchored in a quiet pool directly across the inlet channel from the marina basin. Could see the bright lights of the casinos and yet we were anchored in the secluded pool.

Left Atlantic City in fog as "thick as pea soup". The fog hung on for four hours before lifting. Next destination was Sandy Hook, NJ. As we approached Sandy Hook we saw a huge plume of dark smoke coming from the harbor. A 60-some foot cabin cruiser had run aground at Horseshoe Cover--a fire started in the engine room. Heard radio calls to the Sea Tow and the Coast Guard. The boat burned to the waterline---very sad. The wind carried the odor of burned fiberglass down to the Coast Guard Station where we anchored for the night.

Sunday morning we cruised into New York Harbor. Surprised at how little traffic there was early Sunday morning. When we passed through last September we were rocked by the wakes from ferry boats, tug boats, pleasure boats, freighters and tour boats. Rode through Hells Gate with a favorable current. Again, our first time through Hells Gate was intimidating but this time we didn't think twice--just appreciated the help the current provided. Sailed from Execution Rocks to Oyster Bay.

Anchored in Oyster Bay. Invited over to DIVA for cocktails. Last winter, we were anchored next to Carl and Debbie on DIVA in Georgetown (Exumas) for almost 5 weeks. It was fun to catch up on their travels. Stayed in Oyster Bay two nights. Went into town to stop at the library (get on the internet) and have a hamburger at Taby's Burger House ("Best Burgers on Long Island").

Next stop was Greenwich, CT where we had a mooring from Riverside Yacht Club. The shoreline at Greenwich is rocky and covered with large house (some are mansions). Met up with Sandy and Tom Stefanic from ANANIA who brought us some packages we had sent to their home address and our two alternators (spares) that Tom took to an alternator shop for repair. Also, met Geoff and Dee Dee Robinson owners of a Saga 43 named FAIRTIDE. Geoff grew up in Hart, MI and spent time at a cottage not far from our cottage near Pentwater. Dee Dee and Geoff had us over to their home for dinner. That night, a storm rolled in with lots of lightning. The mooring was in a very protected area so we the high winds were not a problem for us.

Below is one of the mansions on the Greenwich Channel

Scooted over to Westbrook, CT where we anchored at Duck Island. Visited with Mark and Susan Cohen, owner of another Saga 43 called GANDALF. Enjoyed a quiet night at anchor and set off for Newport, RI in the morning. Listened to the weather and decided to divert to Shelter Island rather than continuing on to Newport. Tropical Storm Beryl was approaching. Based on computer models, it looked like Beryl could approach the southeastern tip of Long Island and Cape Cod. Decided it was best to sit it out Beryl in a protected harbor. Met up with Deb and Carl on DIVA who were at a mooring at Derring Harbor. Secured a mooring next to DIVA and had them over for dinner. The four of us kept an eye on the moved further east than forecasted and the winds died down as the storm passed over colder waters.

Left Shelter Island in light fog and light winds. Had a great sail from Watch Hill Point to Point Judith (20 to 23 knots true). A slow sail from Point Judith into Newport (downwind). The approach into Newport is beautiful. The rock cliffs are lined with mansions. You cruise past Hammersmith Farm where JFK and Jackie Kennedy had their wedding reception (2000 guests). Newport is filled with big yachts---sail and power and boats of every size. We anchored in front of the Ida Lewis Yacht Club. Did the "Cliff Walk" a winding seaside path. Because the state of Rhode Island's original colonial charter and later, its constitution guaranteed the people access to the sea. As the tour guide book states "No one, not even a multi-millionaire like Cornelius Vanderbilt, a man who could certainly buy all that money could buy, was never able to block the Cliff Walk trail where it crossed private estate." The path is sometimes paved, sometimes dirt and sometimes granite outcroppings and ledges. After the walk, we treated ourselves to a lobster dinner.

The following pictures are from the "Cliff Walk" at Newport. The first picture is looking back at the Forty Steps. The second picture is of one of the mansions on the walk. Picture number three is just another mansion on the walk. The last picture is of sea side of the Cliff Walk.

Traveled from Newport, RI to Cuttyhunk, MA in Buzzards Bay. The dredged pond at Cuttyhynk is filled with moorings leaving little room for anchoring. When we set the hook there was only one other boat at anchor. We took the dinghy into town to check things out. Went to the Island Market where you can get basic food items and walked around the town. Planned to buy some seafood (heard the scallops were great) but the seafood store did not open until late afternoon. Went out to the anchorage where 3 or 4 more boats dropped their hook. By 5:00, boats were continuing to come in---the mooring were all taken and the anchorage was getting crowded. Could not believe how close the boats were and how little scope they used for anchoring. We also noticed that a launch was delivering seafood---you can use the radio to call to order a lobster. The launch delivers it to your boat---already cooked!

Next day we had a fantastic sail to Hadley Harbor. All of the islands forming Hadley Harbor are privately owned by the Naushon Trust, a low-profile organization of the Forbes family. John Murray Forbes, the 19th century Boston merchant and capitalist, left the islands to his descendants in 1898, and the Trust has maintained them in a near-natural state (with a few Forbes houses) ever since. Picked up a mooring and waited for our friends, Dick and Pat Peebles, on HANANIAH to arrive from Martha Vineyard. Hadley Harbor is beautiful (the Forbes houses are more like Forbes mansions) but there is nothing to do. Can't get off the boat because the islands are privately owned. HANANIAH arrived around 5:00 PM, we went over to HANANIAH for cocktails. We had not seen Dick and Pat since last April in Marsh Harbor (Abacos) so there was a lot of catching up to do.

Left Hadley Harbor early in the morning headed for the Cape Cod Canal. Caught a favorable current---at times a current of 5 knots pushed us along. Anchored at Plymouth, MA. Went into Plymouth to see a replica of the Mayflower (90 foot vessel that carried 102 passengers, a crew of 25 plus various animals and foul). Went to see what remains of the Plymouth Rock. Do you realize almost half of the Pilgrims that crossed on the Mayflower perished the first year? Had to deal with 9-10 foot tides. In the morning, we pulled anchor at 7:30 AM noticing that our buddy boat, HANANIAH wasn't moving. Well.....HANANIAH was stuck in the mud. We continued on our way to Boston Harbor while Dick and Pat had to wait about 90 minutes while the tide came in so they had enough water to pull anchor and get out of there.

The following picture is of the Mayflower (replica). Would you cross the ocean in that vessel?

Below is a picture of the Thoresons being Plymouth Tourists

On our way to Boston, we hit our first lobster pot. Made a lot of noise but no harm done. You will not believe how many lobster pots there are (and people tell us it gets "much worse" in Maine). Anchored in the outer harbor. Not much to say about this anchorage other than it was a place to spend the night. It was too foggy to get a good view of the Boston skyline.

From Boston we headed to Marblehead. Pat and Duane Marshall on NO SE arranged for us to have mooring at the Corinthian Yacht Club. The Corinthian Yacht Club has beautiful facilities. Had dinner on the deck of the Yacht Club one night until a thunderstorm chased us indoors. Walked around Marblehead with all its Revolutionary War history. Saw the original painting of "The Spirit of 76". Visited the art museum in Salem and had a great time.

The following three pictures were taken in Marblehead. The first picture is of the harbor (lots of boats). The second picture is of one of the launches coming to pick us up. The last picture is of the Corinthian Yacht Club.

Tomorrow (7/30), we are heading to the Isles of Shoals. Should be in Maine by Tuesday or Wednesday.

Submitted on 7/29 by:
Marilyn Thoreson