With a gale forecast to fill in during the evening, I was in a bit of a rush to make Solomons Island well before dusk. I caught a wonderful sunrise after leaving Lake Ogelton and TURNING RIGHT (south) instead of left (to haul out) for the first time since we’ve owned the boat. SO EXCITED.
I had a reasonable breeze on the nose but with no time to spare I chose to motor until the last couple of hours, when the breeze built further and shifted to the left.
Long motoring legs down the Bay allow for restful watches spent under the dodger with the auto pilot remote control and a good book!
Once the breeze built I had a nice short beat to finish off the leg #1 of the passage. Really beautiful sailing! Shortly after setting I needed to add a reef until I rounded the point and bore away, when I needed to shake it again.
With 15 knots at the dock, a single handed landing is pretty tough in tight conditions. Fortunately the Zanheiser’s staff was a big help in catching lines and hauling me in.
The first signs of the nasty weather to come rolled in an hour or so after I arrived. Perfect! That night at the dock I learned that gales are loud! It’s a little tough to sleep when the wind howls through the rig and boat boat heels over and yanks at its dock lines with each gust. Still a better experience at a slip than under way, that’s for sure!
Lisa, Brian and Paula came down on the power boat on Saturday to watch college football while I hid from the gale. They had a quick and spirited ride down by hugging the western shore of the Bay.
Leg #1 Key Learnings: Gales are loud!