Madcap Sailing

06 April 2016 | Riverside Marina, Ft. Pierce, Florida
23 March 2016 | Riverside Marina, Ft. Pierce, Florida
20 March 2016 | Vero Beach, Florida
16 March 2016 | Vero Beach, Florida
12 March 2016 | Key West, Florida, USA
07 March 2016
06 March 2016 | Key West, Florida, USA
06 March 2016 | Key West, Florida
05 March 2016 | Key West, Florida
04 March 2016 | Marquesas Keys, Florida, USA
03 March 2016 | Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida, USA
28 February 2016 | Puerto Isla Mujeres Marina, Mexico
27 February 2016 | Puerto Isla Mujeres Marina, Mexico
13 February 2016 | Teotihuacán, near Mexico City
12 February 2016 | Mexico City
11 February 2016 | Mexico City
07 February 2016 | Isla Mujeres, Mexico
05 February 2016 | Puerto Isla Mujeres Marina, Mexico

Old Home Week

26 January 2011 | Warderick Wells
Beth / high 70's sunny
We had planned to do some snorkelling and more exploring on Tuesday morning before heading down to Norman's Cay, but the weather forecast made us think we'd do better to get going early and go all the way to Warderick Wells. There were supposed to be SE winds on Tuesday, winds clocking through the N and chances of squalls on Wednesday night.

So, with plans to come back here again, we pulled the anchor that was well and truly buried, and headed out again. We thought maybe we could have two great days of sailing in a row but that was tempting fate! It worked at first - we sailed well under main and Yankee until we got to the Lighting Bore waypoint but then we had to point closer into the wind. The winds that we thought were to be E 17, stayed pretty much between 20 and 25. As we had to turn more and more eastward, we pulled in the Yankee and put out the staysail. Then we turned on the engine and motor sailed, bucking and banging in the rollers and whitecaps. Eventually we had no foresails out at all - just the main to help steady us as we slogged on. After such a lovely start, it turned into a long rough crawl eastward.

To make things even less comfortable, our GPS started cutting out. We saw a US military ship sitting off the edge of the Park boundary and wondered if it might be scrambling the signal. We've had that happen in Maine and New York. We have also had spotty signals going into Halifax harbour in Nova Scotia, but never here. However, as the miles passed and the problem continued, we decided that couldn't be the problem. We got out the Garmin hand held, and Jim turned on the back up GPS at the Nav station down in the cabin. Fortunately the auto pilot kept working most of the time because it was really hard to hold the boat on course manually in the head on swells.

We never could set a course straight toward Warderick Wells so we jigged a bit this way and jogged a bit that way and finally fought our way out of the wind and waves into the protected mooring field at Emerald Rock. Then it was like Old Home Week!

Connie (Oz) had called the park office to reserve us a mooring. Nancy and Jim (Solitaire) were in their dinghy holding the pennant from the mooring ball. Vic (Whisper) called to welcome us as we came in. Peaches (Star of the Sea) called to invite us to Happy Hour, and by 5:30 we were sitting with Ken and Connie (Oz), Jan and Karl (White Pepper), and Chris and Peaches in Star of the Sea's spacious cockpit - all of us talking excitedly about the sailing, the weather, the plans for the season.

The Old Home Week feeling continued on Wednesday morning. We chatted on VHF with Stu (Georgia E) but didn't get to see him because he left for Cambridge before we dinghied over to check in at the Park office. Once the checking in was done and I had a quick look through the shelves of book to trade, and the stacks of rental DVD's, we motored up along the line of boats in the north mooring field until we came to Passages. We climbed on board to have a chat with Karin and Ed, and left an hour or so later to make our way back. But first, of course, we had to stop for a chat at Star of the Sea, and then at Oz, and then we spied Penny and Hal in the cockpit of Volantis, so we stopped there for a while. Next was Whisper and of course we needed to tie up there for a good chinwag and handful of Purity Crackers straight from Newfoundland! By the time we got home, it was 4 hours later and we had just enough time for Jim to do some trouble shooting (unsuccessful so far) on the GPS and me to have a swim before cleaning ourselves up and going over to join Nancy and Jim (Solitaire) for Happy Hour. Their cockpit was full of rousing conversation with Micky and Beth and Rusty and Joy (Slow Dancin') and Linda and Ken (Escapade). Wow! What a sociable kind of a day!!

To top it off, the wind stayed calm, and the possible squalls went somewhere else. We could see lightning flashes in the sky to the North and East but nothing right over us at all. The sky is absolutely full of stars and we have the gentlest of rocking. For this particular day, life is good. Very, very good.

Vessel Name: Madcap
Vessel Make/Model: Bayfield 36
Hailing Port: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Crew: James D Bissell (Jim) and Elizabeth Lusby (Beth)
About: Beth and Jim have spent the last several winters sailing southern waters on s/v Madcap. They love Halifax in the summer, but plan to spend the winters exploring warmer places - currently the Guatemala, Belize, Honduras area.
The Madcap crew left Ottawa in 2007 to go sailing in the Bahamas. After a highly successful year, they returned to Canada, settled in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and in the fall of 2009 they left to do it again! Journey #3 (2010/11) took them back to the Bahamas and then on to Cuba for several weeks [...]
Madcap's Photos - Mad Cap Sailing (Main)
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