Last sail of the year
12/27/2008, Chesapeake Bay

We had one final sail of the year. This past November and December did not have many sailing opportunities compared to the previous years. I only made it out once each month. Dave and my uncle Steve joined me for a day sail on the bay. It was nice on land with the temperature approaching 60F, but on the water it felt significantly cooler plus the wind chill. We had a nice sail and here are a few pictures.




Here is an update about my genoa. Within two days of receiving my sail through UPS using their account, Dan at North Sails Direct gave me a call with excellent news. They had a bad batch of thread when they stitched my sail and it was not holding up to the UV rays as it should have. Instead of re-stitching the sail, Dan had a brand new sail shipped out to me immediately! Two days later I had a brand new sail at my door. Two thumbs up for North Sails Direct, previously Cruising Direct; that was excellent service!! I am very happy with the outcome.

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Tilghman Creek Raftup

Well, the season is coming to an end, but we managed to get in another weekend trip. We cruised over to Tilghman Creek in Eastern Bay to raft up with Dave. Winds were a bit light so we motored into the Chesapeake keeping my keel up and cutting across the shoal to save some time. Once out in the open bay, we found enough wind to sail about 3.5 knots.

We were able to sail for about an hour until I heard some flapping sound on the head sail. I immediately take a look and see about a 2' tear in my leach! Oh well, not much I could do so I continued to sail. Winds were light so it didn't seem to get worse, that is until we tacked and then the tear caught right on the spreader and then created a 10' tear! Oops, should have thought about that. So, I went forward and took down the genoa.

I got out the duct tape thinking maybe I could make a temporary fix to allow us to continue sailing, but it wasn't working out too well and it was too large of a tear. I also figured with the small craft advisory due to be sailing back on Sunday in, the patch probably wouldn't hold in those conditions. I threw the sail down in the cabin.

We motored the rest of the way to the creek, getting there just after sunset.
Looking aft of us down Eastern Bay:



Rounded the point and now heading into Tilghman Creek.

We rafted up with Dave and enjoyed the evening. An exciting thunderstorm come rolling through which was a bit unexpected, but was entertaining.

Sunday morning went exploring in Dave's dinghy. Here's our raft up.

Our boats anchored in the distance:

A blue heron I managed to snap a photo of as it took flight:

The Chesapeake Bay Cruising Guide mentioned that there are a bunch of derelict fishing boats up the creek. Sure enough, here is what we found:





Charred sunken remains:

After exploring all of the creek, we headed back to our boats and packed up. Dave was going to wait for Daren to sail over and planned to either stay there another night or find another anchorage. We got under way to head home. It turned out to be very calm all day and that small craft advisory definitely did not happen. Since I didn't have a useable genoa, we just motored the entire way home. We didn't miss much of any sailing. It only took four hours to get back to my creek.

We met up with Daren on his C-25 out on the Rhode River:

Turns out Dave decided to head back and Daren just went for a day sail into the South River and back. Daren took this photo of us making our way home into Cadle Creek:

We packed up the boat and met up with Daren at his marina. Dave was running late having some minor engine problems that would not get his boat up to cruising speed, but he was okay. We then went over to The Stein down the road for some good German beer and food.

My sail is currently being inspected by North Sails Direct, where originally purchased 2.5 years ago. It appears they had a bad batch of thread that deteriorated in the sun. The Dacron was just fine and it was the leach trim edge that just came completely free. Stay tuned for the results; I hope they take care of it. The thread on my 26 year main isn't showing this kind of wear as this newer genoa is.

This trip made for an excellent final raft up trip of the season; we had a great time. With all the motoring we did, I got a good idea of my gas usage. It was about 20 miles each way, we motored 4.5-5 knots, took 4 hours, and a total of about 4 gallons. Therefore, 1/2 gallon per hour going 4-5 nm. Not too bad I think. Hopefully I'll get my sail back soon and get a few more sails in before it gets too cold!

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St. Michaels Cruise

We had an awesome three day St. Michaels cruise. Brian, Ginny and I on my boat, Dave single handed his, Daren on his, and Glenn and Lana on his Hunter 30. Here are some photos summarizing the trip.
Making our way into Eastern Bay and being overtaken by a nice spinnaker flying sailboat:

Brian being way too energetic:

Perfect weather:

A nice skipjack near St. Michaels.

Sun getting lower as we make our way to Leeds Creek for Saturday night:

Waking up to this view Sunday morning. My photo was Photo of the Day on Webshots Travel section.




Heading over to St. Michaels, reliving our first little adventure we had on January 29, 2006, only this time not having any problems. This was our first time back to St. Michaels since I relocated my Sapphire Breeze going on 3 years ago.

Brian and Ginny:

That's Dave weighing his anchor after we initially thought we would anchor in the small harbor near the museum. It was a bit too crowded, so we anchored just outside the channel entering the St. Michaels harbor.

Beautiful sailboat I'd love to have someday:

Dave and I rafted up:

Some cool ultra-lights flying around:

We motored into town on Dave's dinghy, meeting up with Glenn and Lana in their rented slip. We then walked around and explored a bit.
Glenn and Lana:

Nice classic schooner:



Dinner at Foxy's at the dock:

Poker in Glenn's cabin:

Daren's boat when I woke up Monday morning:

Ginny exploring:


Beautiful weather sailing back on Monday:

Brian enjoying the ride:

Winds lightened up when we got into Eastern Bay. Here is Daren and Glenn on intersecting tacks:


Dave enjoying a ride on his bow while his auto-tiller does the work:

Glenn's Hunter 30:

Daren was having major engine problems and Glenn towed him home:

Ginny burying herself in the v-berth:

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Who: Justin
Port: Mayo, MD
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