June 30, 2016
Left work to head out to the marina, hoping that the weather wouldn’t prove to be much more than I expected. As I was getting Ilya ready to go out, a huge trawler (at least that’s what I thought it was), turned into the fairway and sought to hook up onto B Dock. This thing had to be about 35-40 feet long, and was about 15 feet high, one of those multiple deck boats that probably had a mileage rating of 5 nautical miles her gallon of fuel. The family docking clearly new what they were doing, since I certainly couldn’t see how they were doing it. Once they were mostly in their slip, I motored out after having to back up once because of a miscalculation.
I chose to raise the main in the basin rather than wait because I thought the current might make it tougher once I was past the breakwater. I got out into the river and already determined that I wouldn’t go crazy and try to hit the bay — just wasn’t worth it. Other boats were coming in and I was worried that maybe the lightning would come after all as the dark clouds seem to be following me. One cool thing is that one of the boats on the E dock that I’ve never seen on the water — Phoenix — came out as well, but her captain sailed toward the bridge rather than toward the bay. Maybe I’ll do that some other time.
I sailed off my usual way, and eventually unfurled the Genoa. It took a few times to get the right amount out, but once I found that right amount, I got up to a maximum of 5.1 knots. The first few times the wind picked up, I pulled in more of the sail or let out the sheets. After a few times, I was able to deal with the healing and in fact stayed on the leeward side a few times when Ilya dug in. I chose not to shake out the reef since it wasn’t worth it, however that does emphasize the need for a boomkicker to keep the mainsail up when I do shake out the reefs.
My back and forth was actually fun, and I was almost able to sail into the marina, but I thought the risks however slight of hitting the rocks wasn’t worth the risk. This time, heaving to worked beautifully, and I motored into the marina easily, using less than a total hour on Hercules, in fact, probably only about a half hour. Backing into the slip was smooth, which was good since the people in the huge trawler were watching me, or at least noticed me at one time.
A very nice short sail.
Engine smooth, less than one half hour of use
Chop/ current moderate, up to 2 feet
Sails reefed main, slightly reefed Genoa
Time 4 hours