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

Good to Horrible and back to Good

17 July 2007 | Bouctouche, NB
Beth
We left Escuminac on schedule and had one of our best sailing days. The sky was clear and the winds were fair - and it was WARM. We were able to sail for much of the day, and then had to motor sail in order to get to Bouctouche at a reasonable time.

We are finding ourselves caught up a bit in this "schedule thing" even though we try to avoid it. If we could just alter our destination when the wind isn't taking us fast enough, it would be fine. But we have to keep moving along at some sort of reasonable pace in order to be getting down the east coast before it gets too cold. We are also getting into the neighbourhood of family and friends and we want to spend time with them.

So here we were motor-sailing along (that's the "good")and we made the turn for the 5 or 6 nautical mile channel threading trek behind the dune and into Bouctouche. (Here comes the "horrible"). I didn't go as close to one green bouy as I should have and we went aground. We have gone aground before on other cruises, and we've been told we'll do it for sure in the ICW, but I wasn't expecting it here. I could make a few excuses about the marking of the VERY narrow channel at this particular point, but the long and the short of it is that I goofed.

We tried everything we knew to get ourselves out of there - reving up the engine for a little extra push, putting up the sails to see if we could tip ourselves off, dinghying out to drop an anchor with the rode attached to the main halyard - again with the intention to tip enough to slid off the shoal. A motor boat came by and they tied on a tow rope and tried to pull us but no luck.

And so it was that we had to call again for help. This was our second stop in NB and our second request for assistance. You can picture our slumping hearts and long faces. Marcel - the local coast guard auxiliary officer was on his way back from PEI and heard our call to the marina. He radioed that he'd be with us in 49 minutes - and in exactly that many minutes he came roaring up in his big tall power boat. After a few tries (including one which cracked the teak under the fairlead on the port side) he managed to pull us free. It was no easy task because the tide had dropped since we grounded, and we were well and truly dug in.

We followed him very slowly in through the rest of the channel - much of it just barely deep enough at this time of the tide - and arrived at one of the most beautiful little marinas we have seen on this trip. Making it even better was the fact that along with the ever-loyal Mary and Blair, our daughter, Mary Beth, and our little white dog, Princess, were also on the dock waiting for us.

It was a bit of an emotional landing, but at least we were back to "good" again. It was so comforting to be able to sit with Mary Beth and talk about the day, to hear her description of her knee surgery and recovery process, and to just BE together.

Today, we stayed put in Bouctouche. Jim and I both needed some down time to recoup our energy after the past few days of difficulties. We walked the trails and enjoyed the beautiful marina building. John Nowlan, the manager has been extraordinarily helpful and kind, driving us out to the Irving Ecocentre so we could walk the boardwalk that winds its way along the dunes, helping us figure out the best departure time tomorrow, and assisting in every way he can. He is a true gem.

We really hope we manage to get back out to the Northumberland Strait without incident, and to make our way east to Cape Tormentine. It would be a treat to have a day with no challenges. There was a little rain shower tonight followed by a gorgeous rainbow. I figure that has to be a good omen. Keep your fingers crossed and stay tuned for the next installment!
Comments
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.
Extra:
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 [...]
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