Avelinda Summer 2015

15 August 2015 | Harraseeket River, South Freeport Maine
14 August 2015 | The Basin, Casco Bay off the New Meadows River
13 August 2015 | High Island, Muscle Ridge Channel, Mid-Coast Maine
12 August 2015 | Zippy to Enchanted Island
11 August 2015 | Saddleback porch
10 August 2015 | Jericho Bay
10 August 2015 | Saddleback view & cabin
09 August 2015 | Old Quarry Ocean Adventures, Stonington, ME
09 August 2015 | Post office
08 August 2015 | Isle any Haut
07 August 2015 | Under the Deer Isle bridge
06 August 2015 | Little Avelinda next to State of Maine (MMA)
04 August 2015 | Pond Island Light, Blue Hill/Jericho
03 August 2015 | Galley Cove, Bartlett Island
02 August 2015 | Buckle Harbor, Swans Island
01 August 2015 | Northeast Harbor, Maine
30 July 2015 | Gulf of Maine: before sunrise
29 July 2015 | Gulf of maine
28 July 2015 | Shelburne Harbor Yacht Club
26 July 2015 | Lockport, Nova Scotia

Homeward Bound

15 August 2015 | Harraseeket River, South Freeport Maine
CH/ HOT day, then Thunderstorms and sprinkles upon arrival
This last day was somewhat anticlimatic. After a very slow start, drinking coffee, swimming, drinking more coffee, and having fresh baked muffins, we finally motivated ourselves to head out at around 10:00. We went to Cundy’s Harbor to a self-serve Pumpout float, and motored past the Cribstone bridge to Jaquish Gut. Going through it brought even the boys to Haskell Island and other places of familiarity. We zigzagged our way avoiding the rocks to Potts Harbor and had a GREAT meal at the Dophin Marina Restaurant for lunch. Mussels were out of this world good, but all the food was perfect for our mood. We really wanted to sail in to the Harraseeket Harbor, and we made our best effort with Rusty doing an expert job at catching the light breeze and rounding Whaleboat to the Green Island Ledges. We were texting the Bouchers who were in front of us somewhere, but eventually we had to pay attention to the thunder and lightning (which seemed to be in Yarmouth) roll up the sails and continue our motoring home. When we arrived Michael was waving his arms in a welcome, and Elizabeth was onshore when we arrived. What great friends they are. We were a bit out of it, and were wet with a few sprinkles, but they were a welcome relief from the scortching sun we had had during the trip. We grabbed Rusty and Christo’s bags, a few toiletries, and left everything aboard to clean out the next day.

What a wonderful final week to a once in a life-time 10 week trip. At one point Peter asked me what the most significant part of the trip was for me. For him, it was crossing the Gulf of Maine -- all that water, no land, the potential weather, all that planning and preparation and then the success of it all. For me, it was getting to know the water, the boat, and sailing each day. Growing up in Ohio meant I have had a lot of learning to do as an adult, and having lots of consistent TIME on the water has been very meaningful to me. How lucky we were to share the end of this experience with the other two people who mean the most to us in the world. We are so thankful that Rusty and Christo made the enormous effort to join us and bring us home.

45 Nautical Miles of Good Sailing Home!

14 August 2015 | The Basin, Casco Bay off the New Meadows River
CH/ Lots of wind, sunny, some clouds, beautiful day
We knew we wanted to go as far as possible today, since the last day of our travel home was forecast to be thunderstorms in the afternoon in Freeport. After a hearty breakfast of eggs and toast, we headed out of Dix/High Island harbor around 8:30. We motored against the strong outgoing current of Muscle Ridge Channel (happily charging our four iphones on the motor’s battery).

Just about each day we have seen seals and porpoise, but this day they were close to the boat and some of the porpoise jumped from the water. We assumed these might be White-Sided Dolphin due to their speed and acrobatics. In addition, we saw Wilson’s petrel, a gannet, guilemot, bald eagle, osprey, and several others. We headed right past the spot we had seen puffin before, but didn’t see them this day.

We kept trying to decide if we should hoist the sails, but given the winds are usually low in the morning, we had a distance to go to our destination, and planes to catch upon our return, we kept them up until just at Allen Island. At this point, we wouldn’t have to tack directly into the wind, and we would be at a better angle. Thus, at about 10:30 we turned off the motor and began our sail. The winds just kept improving through the day and we got to our destination, Dammarascove Island, at about 2:00. Since we weren’t sure on this lovely Friday afternoon there would be space for us in there, and we wanted to take advantage of the wind, we just passed right by it and headed for Sequin Island. We weren’t sure exactly where we would end up, but we thought stopping at Sequin would be a good break.

We sailed right in near the cove and turned on the motor to negotiate the ledges and catch the mooring. Rusty rowed Zippy in to the beach against strong wind. We marveled at the tram which was a wooden walkway with railroad ties to pull a cart with provisions up the the lighthouse. There were a few such trams in various states of disrepair that we have seen on our trip, but this one was working through last year (when an accident had its use halted). We are hoping they are in the process of repairing it, but I forget what the caretaker said about that.

The caretaker at Sequin is chosen each year from many applications. This year, the wife of the couple had lived there as a two year old in the 60s since her father was in the Coast Guard. She had never been back until this year. She showed us briefly through the museum, and then brought us up the light to view the Fresnel lens and the dramatic view. Sequin Light is the highest lighthouse in Maine, and is what you see when at Popham Beach on the island 2 miles away. It was emotional for us to see where we had come from, and where we were headed. By this point we had decided to try to make it to The Basin, and we could see Cape Small -- the edge of Casco Bay. You could also see the major current formed by the huge amount of water entering from the Kennebec River causing white caps and waves.

It was about an hour diversion at the island before we headed back on the boat. We decided to go away from shore to avoid the current, but even where we were headed was bumpy and with significant waves and 15-20 knot winds crashing over our bow. A few of these got us very wet. When we wanted to hoist the sails we decided it would be safe to reef both the main and the jib. Unfortunately, its best to set this up before getting into the serious seas...but we hadn’t done this. Luckily, we have a son who likes being “on the edge” rock climbing, hang-gliding and the such, and Christo quickly clipped his off-shore life jacket into the jack lines to go on deck and do what was needed. The rest of us were happy doing the work from the cockpit, and it took all four of us to get everything ready. (How had we done this with just two of us….?) As soon as we were sailing we were going 6.5 knots steadily, fully reefed and heading in a hurry toward our destination.

When we rounded Cape Small the wind got more manageable, and we were now in Casco Bay. Peter started pointing out specific spots in the water where Friends of Casco Bay have water quality sites, and giving us a guided tour of islands, and useful information about the area. We headed downwind towards The Basin, off the New Meadows River, as the sun began to set. Rusty went below and began dinner, so we could eat upon arrival. At one point we almost went to Malaga Island, a bit closer, but we were all glad we decided to wind our way down the narrow passage to the lake-like basin which opened up into a perfect, calm, hurricane hole. No way would we be rocked to sleep tonight in this calm spot. We were ravenous at 8:00 when we arrived, and we felt a real sense of accomplishment for our long adventurous sail. What a day!

Crossing Penobscot Bay

13 August 2015 | High Island, Muscle Ridge Channel, Mid-Coast Maine
CH/ Sunny, warm, good sailing winds
Again we were concerned about the weather. This time, not due to storms, but the lack of wind predicted for the next three days was a little disheartening considering we had a long way to travel back to Freeport and plane tickets to catch upon return. We knew it would still be gorgeous to motor, but it's just not the same.

After motoring just to get to Mark Island area of Penobscot Bay, we were pleasantly surprised with 10-15 knot winds. We hoisted up the sails, and this enabled us to travel calmly at about 4.5 knots directly in the direction we wanted to go -- Fox Island Thorofare. Last summer, Peter and I had biked from Pulpit Harbor to North Harbor, but we had never boated through it. Surprisingly, there were farms, wooded edges, cozy little coves amongst the busy boating traffic. We decided to get fuel as we passed the town since it was so close.

After the stop we cruised the Thorofare back out into the other side of the bay. Happily, the wind had picked up and we considered going even farther than to Dix Island in Muscle Ridge Channel. In the end, we were ready to stop, even though we were tempted to keep at it with the good winds. We anchored among several other cruisers, and there was a bit of a rock at the incoming tide, but all in all it was a calm night. Before dinner, we decided to explore High Island quarry. In the quarry was some fresh water we couldn't resist -- it felt so good to swim in the warm, fresh water. At one point on Dix Island there were 2000 quarrymen, towns, railroads, opera houses, etc! Funny to explore what seems like rock pile stories of a bygone era in this Maine wilderness.

Last Day on the Island

12 August 2015 | Zippy to Enchanted Island
CH/ fog, light winds, partly cloudy
We retrieved our boat, got some provisions, and decided not to worry about the fog predictions due to all our experience with fog. Decided perhaps they should get the full view of Maine sailing! We were excited to go to Green Island, which we had kayaked to before in the past. You can swim in a freshwater quarry there, but due to the very low tide and no where to anchor, we just kept going to Merchants Island. We anchored in the cove, and explored the Maine Island Trail Harbor Island there. Rusty and Carey jumped in the cold water this time, and then we set off looking for blueberries along the trail. We picked a few for pancakes the next morning, but most had gone by or were crispy. Christo stayed in Zippy to use our poor excuse for fishing gear (a jig and one or two lures -- no pole) at a good site nearby. Immediately, he caught a small Pollack -- at least that's what we thought it was in his photo.

Upon leaving we headed in to thick fog, with fog horn blasting every 2 minutes, AIS and radar on. It was a fairly easy route back, but with some miscommunication we got fairly near a few islands. Luckily the wind was light and we could easily turn the right way. Not surprisingly, everyone is pretty low key, go with the flow and we really were lucky not to have any real "family issues" given the 24/7 and tight quarters we were sharing. At one point the boys headed off in Zippy to explore Enchanted Island and Phoebie. Everyone truly seemed to be enjoying the adventure and exploration together in this special part of our home.

After we returned and ate supper, we headed outside to watch the bright stars, shooting stars, and in the area of Belfast (far away) where there was a lot of lightning giving us a real light show. Even McGlathery had some twinkling mast lights to add to the magic. What a memorable night lying on the warm rock with the four of us enjoying the night sky.

Many Days in One

11 August 2015 | Saddleback porch
CH/ Huge surf, 25knot winds, big storm, cozy cabin
The weather prediction for the late afternoon and evening was severe wind, rain, and thunderstorms. We were glad to be in our cozy cabin, but we were very concerned about Avelinda given that Maine Coast Heritage Trust, from whom we were renting the cabin and mooring, said it would not be good to keep a boat on that mooring in a SW winds over 20 knots. Gusts over 25 were predicted. After much consulting with various weather stations at various times, we decided to bring our boat back to the Quarry Adventures, and have "Capt. Bill" drive us back to our cabin in his lobster style boat. Webb Cove is a little more protected, and he assured us of new chain and "big rocks" for the mooring. So we headed off on the scenic route through Merchant Row islands, the backside of Crotch Island where the granite is still quarried, and down the Deer Isle Thorofare to get there. We saw other boats, had a good breeze, and caught our ride back to the island.

The day was spent exploring the island, hanging on the porch drinking tea, and awaiting the storm. It was a doozie of a storm. Even if the mooring had held we would have gotten no sleep, so we were happy with our decision to get rid of our boat! At night we got a bit goofy and we became curious about what was in a HUGE, new white box up on an empty loft. We hoisted Rusty up there to explore, and found it was a whole new chimney to be installed. Getting him down from there was questionable, but we were all happy to have the answer to our questions. We sat around the stone fireplace, caught up with each other, laughed and had a great night.

Christo as Crew

10 August 2015 | Jericho Bay
Ch/ 15 Kt winds, Sunny and clear
Back at the sailing scene -- a huge help having those strong men on board!

Merchants Row: Saddleback Cabin

10 August 2015 | Saddleback view & cabin
Ch/ 15 Kt winds, Sunny and clear
When we awoke and got going we marveled at the Maine post card weather, and the perfect sailing wind. We decided to drop our gear off at the cabin and check it out, and then cross Jericho Bay to swim and explore the beach and trails at Marshall Island (near Swans Island). We had seen the weather reports, with some severe storms on the way during our stay at Saddleback, and then questionable wind conditions, so we took advantage of the day.

It was a wonderful sail with both boys taking doing the heavy lifting as crew, and taking turns at the helm. We anchored at Marshall; Carey and Christo jumped in even though the sun was no longer high and hot. We explored a bit and then got back on the boat for a sunset dinner at anchor of pan fried haddock, rice and some veggies from the Castine Farmers Market. While crossing the bay the sun went down, and it was dark enough that we needed our huge spot light to find the mooring ball at the Island. It was a fantastic first day of our time together.
Vessel Name: Avelinda
Vessel Make/Model: Ericson 32 - 200
Hailing Port: South Freeport, ME
Crew: Capt Pete and First Mate Carey
About: Peter works for Friends of Casco Bay; Carey works as 8th Grade Teacher
Extra: We gain spiritual connection to the earth, and rejuvenation upon being together on the ocean. We are excited about our upcoming 10 week cruise the coast of Maine to Nova Scotia
Avelinda's Photos - Main
No Photos
Created 5 June 2015
3 Photos
Created 15 May 2015

Avelinda is fixed and ready for spring

Who: Capt Pete and First Mate Carey
Port: South Freeport, ME