Cruise 2017 Adventure

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August 12th, 2019
There are three million lobster traps in Maine and at times it's a job to work your way through them. We had been warned about them but I now find them an additional entertainment to the day as we hop from anchorage to anchorage. They become a pain when on a long passage for there is no respite making for a surprisingly tiring day. As we dodged pot after pot I started to wonder what they are baited with and the answer presented itself as I took my morning paddleboard in Maple Juice Bay. This is a local boat that I spent forty five minute chatting with as they pulled together their purse sein net. There are any number of shoals about that are easy pickings for the lobstermen as they head out for a days work. They are allowed sixteen barrels of bait and once collected they release the rest alive which is so good to see when consider of our mad system at home where perfectly good fish are thrown back dead.

You might think that three million pots would decimate the Lobster but catches are rising and its thought that the baiting is so plentiful that as much as anything they are farming Lobster with small ones being returned until of a legal size for consumption.
August 12th, 2019
Cape Cod became one of the most bountiful areas of the Empire thanks to the abundance of fish. My whale shots never came out but I did get this picture of one of the many Sunfish that waved to us in their lazy way. Don't underestimate them though for on close approach they shoot off and we saw one of them breach later in the day. There are huge shoals of fish about here and obviously oily for you can smell a shoal when downwind.
August 12th, 2019
Provincetown is tucked inside the curling embrace at the end of Cape Cod and makes for a safe anchorage. I have always wanted to come here and wasn't disappointed for it has a fun, rather bohemian nature thanks to the large and joyous gay community. We took a day out to nail our laundry, top up the stores and soak up the atmosphere. There is a huge monument dominating the town that is a copy of a tower in Venice. An oddity when you consider it was erected to celebrate the Mayflowers first landfall in America.
August 12th, 2019
One of the short cuts to Maine is the Cape Cod Canal which saves a couple of days and is lovely. Particularly when you get the tide right and rattle through at over ten knots. It's lush with greenery, beautifully maintained and as you can from the decorative nature of the bridge built with pride.
August 12th, 2019
Maine is a long way from Annapolis and so we have averaged about eighty miles a day from port to port. We did a lot of motoring for there wasn't much wind about but that's the joy of cruising for I always used to hate drifting in light airs when racing. We did a big day of about a hundred miles from Barnegat to Shannecock which included catching this beauty - theres nothing like putting food on the table.
August 12th, 2019
Having shown you the butterfly I feel it would be churlish not to show you the bar for we just loved the idea - its a proper working boat that came to the end of its days but still had enough life for drunken fishing stories across its deck.
August 12th, 2019
Apologies for the lack of Blogs but we have been pushing for Maine and time has been tight particularly as I had some work to do.

We have now arrived and this comes from Pulpit Harbour which is a stunning anchorage and worth a google. We have decided to stay here for a day or so to catch up with ourselves, have a rest and update the blog.

This picture of a butterfly was taken by a bar in Chesapeake so its a bit out of date but I like it.

It also shows how we have moved from somewhat tropical conditions in Chesapeake to what is more akin to a UK summer.
July 25th, 2019
Back in the Saddle
We're back in the saddle and at anchor in Atlantic City waiting for the wind to turn in our favour. Truth be known we are grateful to a contrary wind for we need to charge up our batteries after a brilliant but exhausting trip home.

Olivia, our daughter, is married and it could not have been a better day with perfect weather, a ceremony and celebration that was theirs and theirs alone. They were married in front of a select few who hold a special place in their lives. It was in our woods which burst with love, fun and Champagne.

Given that the ceremony and larger reception were in separate outdoor locations it made for a lot of work. This wedding wasn't a case of booking a venue and choosing the menu, it all had to built. A huge team effort swept the challenge ahead of it but I must confess that we worked our socks off. This, coupled with having to teach in Edinburgh, London, Oxford, Berlin, Monaco, Paris and Sydney over a mad five-week period has left us happy but depleted.

Popping Pearl back in the water could not have been smoother once I had sorted out anodes, log impellers and serviced the folding prop. The job list took up two days in what turned out to be a brutal heatwave the like of which I have never experienced. It became impossible to function as the heat escalated throughout the day. If I looked down my glasses pooled the sweat that was running off me and I couldn't see. We booked ourselves into accommodation.

Day three had us motoring up to Annapolis to top up with fuel, water and victuals as the heatwave entrenched. It was so hot that Koi in a local pond succumbed as the heat matched Death Valley. We booked into a hotel and waited for things to improve as we caught up with Ian and Michelle our good friends from the yacht Mahina. They had had a busy couple of months traveling around Canada by car so there was lots to catch up on.

There comes a time when you just have to bite the bullet and so we motored up Chesapeake Bay, through the canal and into Delaware River. A very long and hot day that broke just after we anchored with a monumental thunderstorm with forty knot gusts and alarming lightning. The heat prevailed through the humid night but it was a spent force. A northerly cold mass kick started the day with rain and a temperature drop that saw us in thermal tops for the rest of the day!! The weather is very volatile round here with dramatic swings and extremes.

Another long day saw us dropping the anchor in Atlantic City where we have had the first proper day off for a few months, although I did have to write my column for Yachting Monthly. Its been lovely to stop and it has offered an opportunity to regroup into our sailing life and start to plan the next couple of months. For now, the goal is to make thirty miles north of here to Barnegat where I need to service the engine. I can feel an early start coming with a nice breakfast at sea.
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