....I just know you're going to have a tough time believing this, but I actually got to SAIL MY BOAT. No kidding. I mean, for once, the wind, stars, sun, Zodiac signs, tide, I mean everything, lined up and I actually got to SAIL MY BOAT.
Ok, since this is such an uncommon occurrence (don't believe me, just look back through these posts for the last time I actually talked about SAILING THE BOAT), I'm going to tell you how it came about.
I left Nyack for Liberty Landing Marina on Friday, in Jersey City, right across from New York and about a mile up from the Statue of Liberty. The winds were pretty wild, so I settled down there for the weekend, meeting some neat people - John, on an Island Packet and up from Florida (what's with that?); Zack, a budding journalist and sailor; Brian, a new liveaboard; Michelle, the dockmaster; Ron the GM; and several other of the local liveaboards as well. It was a pleasant weekend.
Leaving on Monday morning, the predicted winds were 10 - 15 NW, gusting 20 - that usually means 15 - 20, gusting insanely, but I thought I'd take a chance anyway. And the forecasters were right for once...so these were perfect conditions for the 38 mile sail. I raised the genoa as I approached the Verranzano Bridge, turned off the engine and was soon scooting along at over six knots, actually breaking 8 knots for a while approaching Sandy Hook. Had a great run into Manasquan, while passing by the areas that Hurricane Sandy had gone through.
That was just amazing - entire rows of vacation townhouses on the beach lifted up by the winds and shifted back maybe 30°, entire buildings reduced to a pile of wood and stone. And the beaches - you didn't notice it at first, but then I realized it was low tide and there was almost no sand....and what there was would be covered by water at high tide.
Now if you've not seen the NJ beaches, you wouldn't understand - the beaches were a major feature of the NJ coastline - wide stretches of sand and they're gone. Amazing the power of that storm.
So...anchored out in Manasquan, where a lot of boarded up windows and trash in the streets and yards attested to Sandy's visit. Left the next morning, yesterday, with winds expected to go from the east to northeast...and they did, and built to about 15 - 20, gusting 25, sloppy seas, rainy and cold. It was a great sail, probably averaged about six knots to do 50+ miles, but I was sooooo cold when I got in - it was hours before I warmed up.
Now, to make it up the Delaware River from Cape May (my next stop), I need south winds, which aren't arriving until Saturday. I'm taking the opportunity to tie up to a dock here and catch up with some writing, and also avoid the high winds that are still out there, not to mention the cold.
The red line here denotes the run from Jersey City to Manasquan, a distance of 38 nautical miles.
On the chart to the right, the first red line denotes the run from Manasquan to Atlantic City, where I am now, about 52 miles. The blue line is the run to Cape May, about 32 miles, which I'll do Friday.
Saturday morning, the winds are supposed to be 5 - 10 knots S, so I'll follow the red line up the Delaware River. Also, the tide starts to flood early in the morning, so I'll have the tide behind me, which is the only way to get up the Delaware.
From the C&D Canal, which is at the left top end of the red line, I'll tie up at Chesapeake City, and the following day (Annapolis readers, you've been warned!), I'll be in my favourite city...
Best part is, the temperatures are going up starting Saturday, in the mid to high 50s and remaining there well into next week. YES!
And from the looks of the forecasts, I'll be able to SAIL MY BOAT some more.
Life is good....oh, and in case I don't get a chance to hit the internet between now and Saturday, Happy Birthday to a certain Barrie native, who shall remain nameless....but you know you're thought about!