17 July 2011 | Labrador Sea
We left Black Tickle on a quiet morning, motoring out of the still harbor and
away from the coast until the wind picked up enough to sail. The piece of ice in the photo was fairly close to the shore.
I'd been paying a lot of attention to the weather forecasts. Computer programs made their guesses, the National Weather Service made their guesses, Environment Canada made their guesses, and I looked at all these and made my guesses. We were all wrong :).
What was expected to be a brisk reaching wind turned into a mere slog dead to windward in F4-6 seas for a little over a day. We dodged several growlers and bergy bits in the intermittent rain and fog. The forecasts had now changed to be another day of headwinds to 30 knots. We were sailing against the south-flowing Labrador current, and progress was slow when, during a gybe, the inner jib (trinquette) refused to come across.
A quick check up forward showed the stay was no longer attached to the mast. We got the other sails down so we would be heading downwind, and then brought the stay and sail (it was a roller-reefed sail) onto the deck. It seemed that the cotter pin that holds the clevis pin that holds the stay (wire) in place had sheared off. We got the sail off and cleaned up the deck, then changed course and sailed and motorsailed towards Cartwright, which was only about 130 miles back from where we were.
As we got closer to the coast, the wind became quite favorable, the sun came out and we had a pleasant sail to within a few hundred metres of the dock. There we went to start the engine to motor onto the dock, and that began the John Deere Saga, which is the topic of another post.