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The First Mate's Journal
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Great Lakes to The Bahamas
Who: Wayne & Pat
Port: Jackson
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Lorain to Fairport
Sunny, High Pressure System today
08/16/2008, From: N41o28.9 x W082 o 11.7 Lorain Ohio to N41 o 46 x W081 o 16.9Fairport Harbor, OH

This was a very well protected anchorage at Lorain - quite still and I slept like a baby...Made coffee while watching sunrise and the silhouette of fishermen as they walked out on the breakwaters to fish in the red-pink glow of the rising sun. I love sunrise - my favorite time of the day when every day is fresh and new with possibilities; There was a steady stream of Saturday morning fishing boats leaving the harbor.

We saw a 1000 ft. ore carrier come in to the harbor and past us going into Loraine to the Kobe Lorain Works or LTV pellet terminal on the Black river. The surrounding area has a nice looking marina and is still pretty much a suburban area. We waited for the freighter to go in (of course I had to take pictures - Wayne loves my digital camera J) before leaving. Look at the picture - there's a 30 ft sailboat next to him going out of the harbor - whoosh. It looks like today may be a 10 hour day - Destination Fairport Harbor, OH about 50 miles from here. Light winds NW to SW should help us out a bit.

Coming in at 7:30 a coastguard call came in for a capsized vessel (26 ft sailboat) with 2 people in the water from another sailing vessel that went to help and fouled their anchor chain in their propeller. They were 3 miles or so from here and the sirens went off at the coastguard building, near us, calling everyone in for a rescue. It made me feel good seeing how quickly they were responding to the mayday as their orange zodiac, with lights flashing and siren blaring as it sped out of the harbor. It was interesting listening to the proceedings on channel 16. The sheltered area behind the breakwater is huge - like a small lake in itself. Many boats and jet skis in here. Depths range from 3-15 feet and there's a public beach/park east of the river entrance. A couple of powerboats decided to circle us and generate waves. One of them was towing 2 kids on a tube - nice example to teach the kids - harass the anchored sailboats... The second time they came by us (quite close) Wayne yelled, "Thanks" to them. Think they got the message? I doubt it, and the kids will follow their example when they get older no doubt...

Wayne had the helm most of the day while I did my navigator thing. Not much to it though it was a pretty straight run without much in the way. I finished the 2nd Stephenie Meyer's book in her trilogy today and was going to start the 3rd but it's buried in the back berth (our official garage) so that will have to wait... My computer battery is running low and Wayne is going to put the 12-volt adapter in so I can recharge the puter and the phones tomorrow... Batteries low so.... Signing off for now in Fairport Harbor.

S Bass Island to Lorain Ohio
Sunrise 6:37/Sunset 8:26 Departure 9:50am Nwinds 10-15knots
08/15/2008, 41o39 x W82o49 Put-In-Bay S. Bass to N41o28.9 x W082o11.7 Lorain Ohio

Life is for learning -

Two things learned - don't tie up to short on a mooring ball and the stove top won't open to remove the cover if the control knob isn't all the way closed. We rocked and banged on the mooring ball a good portion of the night last night and this morning getting up to make coffee I couldn't light the stove - duh I had the new gasket on inside it (to prolong the alcohol) - so tried to open the top for 4 minutes before I figured out the problem. Problem solved good morning world.

Pretty uneventful day. No sailing - we were heading pretty much into the wind all day. Passed by Cedar Point - Wow - nice skyline showing their high roller coasters and a drop ride that was the same if not higher than the highest roller coaster.

Lorain is an interesting anchorage. S. shore of Lake Erie roughly 25 miles west of Cleveland. It has an outer harbor, inner harbor and the Black river has a large industrial complex with boating facilities and freighter docks too. 2 converging breakwaters make the outer harbor then a small, detached riprap breakwater protects the entrance of the harbor. We put in a little after 6pm (total trip distance so far 62.05 miles) inside the outer break wall but outside of the marina.

We got to try our windlass for the first time - it works! What a nice way to drop anchor. Wonder if anchoring with all chain is different than with rope... We anchored in front of the small riprap wall out of the way of traffic and the sheriff came by close to 8:20 to tell us to turn on our anchor light. We were about to anyways - waiting for sunset to conserve battery power (in another 5-10 minutes). Winged a chicken salad recipe (left my recipes at home evidently - can't find them) with rolls and wine for dinner & we read until 11ish.

First Stop: Put-In-Bay or bust
Partly Sunny N to NE winds 10-15 knots; Sunrise 6:40am/Sunset 8:45pm 3rd Quarter Moon
08/14/2008, Toledo Beach Marina, LaSalle Michigan to Put-In-Bay, South Bass Island (41o39N x 082o49W)

This morning was a little bit better organized. Coffee was on as soon as I got out of bed - last sunrise at Toledo Beach Marina, and we were up and out after finishing stowing the odd items and collecting our lines from the dock.

Our speed/distance meter on the instrument panel doesn't seem to be working. It continuously read 0.0 the entire way, but the depth and wind meters were working fine. Hmmmm.... We used the chart plotter to determine our speed and distance. Today we didn't get to sail but motored the entire way (nothing like traveling into the wind on a sailboat). Pretty uneventful traveling day 112o to W. Sister Island (a game refuge) ~18 miles, the change course to 128o for 8-10 miles to avoid the firing range (navigation is restricted in that general area if firing exercises are going on), then 97o to go between Rattle Snake and Green Islands and in to Put-In-Bay. So we figured about 35 miles at 5 knots & we'd get in in about 7 hours. We ended up doing fairly well since we motored the entire way - ave. speed 6.17, trip time 5:20.42 and distance traveled 32.87 miles.

It was kinda cool coming in here - you can see Perry's monument on the island way before you actually see the island. Perry's Victory & International Peace Memorial is a 352 ft Pink Granite monument that you can see for 20 miles away. It also has a light at the top that can be used as a guiding beacon at dark. It's quite an impressive structure and they let you climb to the top of it. We opted out of the climb this trip (I did this on a previous fieldtrip here) and decided to go for pizza and beer at the brewery here. The amber brew was a hit with me but Wayne thought there was to much hops and we both loved the pizza - they have a sauce with a lot of basil and something else that was wonderful.

Moorings here (we're on C6) are $30 a night during the week, Fri & Sat $40 and on special nights and particular moorings, closer in the price is $50 for a mooring. Call channel 10 and a water taxi comes and fetches you so you can spend money on the island and support the local economy (did I mention they have a terrific beer and pizza place? LOL) most of the tourists rent golf carts to tour the island and we saw a lot of bicyclists too. Nice island, but to be avoided unless you're really into partying and crowds on the weekends.

Almost forgot - we saw the Good Year Blimp coming over the island as we were approaching. We decided that it was heading for the Nascar race back home this weekend in Brooklyn when that place becomes the 3rd largest city in Michigan for the weekend (glad we're not there this weekend).

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