Long Island Sound
01 June 2015 | Cuttyhunk, Mass
52F, cloudy, showers, wind NE@15-20
We have spent the night in Manhasset Bay a number of times, but only went ashore once, and only fleetingly. But today, with a short day planned, we called the water taxi and headed in. Port Washington has moorings that are free for 48 hours, and the water taxi is $30 per day for unlimited trips. If you pay for the mooring ($30), the water taxi is free. Hmmm
Back in North Carolina we discovered that our dinghy gas tank had begun leaking over the winter. Although there was not much to see, there was an oily patch under it. All was quickly cleaned up, but without it, the dinghy was not very useable. It is a rough row. Port Washington was our first opportunity to replace it, so we headed ashore to the West Marine store and came away with a replacement. We passed lots of excellent shopping for cruisers, groceries, hardware, electronics, etc.
Back at the Shop & Save dinghy dock, one of many in the harbour where the water taxi will drop you, we headed for the fuel dock, filled the tank and were back in action with the dinghy.
We dropped the mooring at 1030 hrs and headed out for Port Jefferson, and in mid-afternoon were picking up a mooring at the Setakut Yacht Club. Like our visits to Port Washington, we had been here before, but always in late fall, only anchoring for the night. So today we had a nice tour of the attractive town. Back at the boat, we stowed our purchases, Chicken Pot Pie, Pear tart, and an excellent selection of cheeses. In the quiet evening, we had BBQ lamb chops with a nice red zinfandel, and turned in for a quiet night.
We have had constant south or south-west winds since we left Norfolk, six days, and the forecast was for two more before it shifts to a nasty nor'easter. So we were anxious to make as much progress as possible before we were halted by the weather. Target for today was Stonington, 65 nm away. So we sailed off the mooring at 0700 hrs and out the harbor as the first ferry of the day left. Outside on Long Island Sound we bore off north-east and had yet another beautiful sail on 15-20 knot southerlies. Again we lucked out with the tide and had the very strong currents in The Race with us, keeping our speed over 8.0 knots for most of the day. We arrived at Dodson's Boatyard in mid-afternoon, picked up a mooring and went ashore for a good walk in the pretty and historic town. Another quiet night.
Today is forecast to be the last of our southerlies, so again we wanted to get as far as we could. We settled on Cuttyhuunk, the outer-most of the Elizabeth Islands, at the mouth of Buzzards Bay. Another fine sail as we passed through Fisher Sound, through Watch Hill Passage into Block Island Sound, then Rhode Island Sound, rounding up into the tiny harbor at 1500 hrs. We expect to hunker down here for at least two days. In the dying southerlies, we headed ashore for a walk, returning just as the winds began to shift. In 15 minutes, the dying southerlies were replaced by 20-30 knot north-east winds, accompanied with a plunging temperature, ending eight straight days of southerlies. We are sharing this very popular anchorage with only one other boat. Not surprising given the forecast.
Down below, we turned on the Espar heater for the first time this year. Last week we were sleeping with fans cooling us. Not tonight! But our chicken pot pie from Port Jefferson warmed us nicely. Based on the forecast, we are here for at least two days until we can move on, and then still facing the dying nor'easter.