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Issuma
A Beautiful Day
Richard
Fri Oct 1 12:33:07 EDT 2010, Long Island Sound, USA

We sailed into the eastern end of Long Island Sound just ahead of strong southerly winds (a close-hauled course for us). We had just gotten around Orient Point (at the entrance to the sound) when the wind picked up, and the current started to turn against us. We continued for a few miles, then anchored off the beach for six hours until we had favorable current again. Then we sailed on until the current turned again, anchored and continued again when the current became favorable.

While underway, the forecast changed from merely strong southerly winds to a tornado watch, but fortunately we did not encounter anything more than a near gale and rain.

In Labrador, it seemed that people described almost any day as a Beautiful Day (it was more of a greeting than a description, though), so I thought that was an appropriate title for a day with wind that can be sailed in and enough rain to compensate for the otherwise overly warm temperature.

Fri Oct 1 14:38:25 EDT 2010 | Gabriela
Gee, this looks like a pretty painful moment...
I wonder what was in my mind at that moment because I cannot recall to have had neither painful nor scary moments while we sailed on Long Island Sound. Actually, the near Gale on Long Island Sound was more like a piece of cake comparing to the strong winds we (me and Richard) encountered crossing the Golf of Maine.
Fri Oct 1 15:01:52 EDT 2010 | Gabriela
Yes, despite the near Gale winds and the 35 knots gusts we had on the Long Island Sound, sailing was fun and exiting on that beautiful day. Adrenaline rushing! :)
Correction on misspelled Gulf of Maine.
Fri Oct 1 16:43:43 EDT 2010 | George Ray
I think that people who sail small boats to the vicinity of the Arctic Circle can spell any word any way they wish.
Fri Oct 1 23:47:17 EDT 2010 | Gabriela
Thanks for your support George!

Actually as I recall now, my expression must have been the reaction to the pretty strong, nasty gust we had sailing on the L.I. S.
Sat Oct 2 1:51:36 EDT 2010 | Yann Sergent
nice to know you are back home!
Sun Oct 3 23:00:54 EDT 2010 | Gabriela
Here is why I think that the winds we encountered on Long Island Sound were more like a piece of cake compare to the wind we faced sailing on the Gulf of Maine during Hurricane Igor.

Well, Richard has been pretty subtle about this, but on August 4th, Chris had to get off in Hopedale. Since then, from Hopedale to Baffin Island and throughout most of our way back was only the three of us left; myself, Richard and Ted.

On September 20th, Ted had to get off in Shelburne Harbor so he can make it on time for a meeting he had to attend on September 23rd in New York.

Therefore we had the choice to wait for Ted to get back to the boat or else leave Nova Scotia and sail across the Gulf of Maine, only Richard and myself.

Of course, Richard thought we will be better off if we leave Shelburne Harbor before the bad weather may keep us there longer than we really wanted to be there.

Throughout this entire 4 months trip to the North, I think that crossing the Gulf of Mine was
Sun Oct 3 23:06:31 EDT 2010 | Gabriela
Here is why I think that the winds we encountered on Long Island Sound were more like a piece of cake compare to the wind we faced sailing on the Gulf of Maine during Hurricane Igor.

the most challenging experience for me. Richard knew that there will be strong winds against our direction from the Hurricane Igor on our second day on the sea, but he also knew that we would get favorable winds after that. When we saw the clouds pointing toward the Hurricane Igor, I asked Richard:
“Are you sure this is a good decision?”
“I am not sure” was his answer.
“Gee! This is not very encouraging…” I said. Nonetheless, we kept going.
Of course, we felt Igor’s presence in our vicinity very strongly during the second day on the sea. Because of the strong big waves and winds against us, we were not able to advance at all. We hove to the whole day.
I did not pray much throughout this trip, but on that second day on the Gulf of Maine, while I was on watch so Richard can
Sun Oct 3 23:11:31 EDT 2010 | Gabriela
can get few hours of sleep, I could not help myself but pray all the time for the winds and waves to calm down.
Mountains and hills of waves were rocking the boat up and down, and made the boat plunge its bow into the water while pools of foam as big as lakes were forming between the weaves.
Although, I love water and I love swimming, (I am a Pieces…☺) I would not have been happy to have to be swimming in that fury of water and winds.
When Richard got up few hours later, I said to him
“If you will only know how much I pray for these winds and waves to calm down…?”
“I can imagine you did, because you did not wake me up” was his answer.
Anyway, I think that sharing this experience with you all might explain better why the winds and gusts we encountered on Long Island Sound did not scare me at all comparing to the fury of Hurricane Igor’s winds on the Gulf of Maine did.

Later Richard told me that the winds we encountered on Gulf of Maine were of force seve
Sun Oct 3 23:21:02 EDT 2010 | Gabriela
Later Richard told me that the winds we encountered on Gulf of Maine were of force seven, near gale. When I studied the chart with the pictures of the wind forces on water, the weaves I have seen while he was asleep looked more like force ten, storm on the chart. Of course, he did not agree with me. But how could he? He was asleep while I was out there watching them and getting butterflies in my stomach…
Once we arrive on Long Island Sound I told Richard:
“Now I could swim home from here.” Except for the few strong gusts, we had a beautiful sail day.
This is why I thought that the 15 to 25 knots winds and 35 knots gusts we faced on L.I.S. (I hope that I am being very accurate here) were more like a piece of pie comparing to the winds we met on our sailing across the Gulf of Maine.
Cape Cod Canal
Richard
Mon Sep 27 10:00:00 EDT 2010

We had a pleasant motor through the pretty Cape Cod Canal, which links Cape Cod Bay with Buzzards Bay.

Wed Sep 29 18:12:42 EDT 2010 | George Ray
Congratulations on your arctic adventure. You have been talking about sailing more in the hi-laditudes since I first met you and now it's happening. Is South Georgia next?
Wed Sep 29 20:48:16 EDT 2010 | George Conk
Congratulations Richard, Chris, Gabriela (& Yann)on your safe return.
- George
Fri Oct 1 12:00:34 EDT 2010 | Richard Hudson
Thanks very much, gentlemen.

While South Georgia would be a fascinating place to visit, I don't have such exciting plans for this northern-hemisphere winter.
Labrador Sunrise
Richard
Sat Sep 25 6:09:00 EDT 2010

Sunrise along Port Manvers Run on the beautiful coast of Labrador, last month. We are far south of there now, waiting for a cold front to pass Cape Cod.

Sat Sep 25 20:35:52 EDT 2010 | George Ray
What news on the AirBreeze wind-generator?
Sun Sep 26 5:01:21 EDT 2010 | Richard Hudson
The Air Breeze wind generator is still not working. I have not yet taken it off the pole to see if there is anything that can be done with it.
Clouds Point to Igor
Richard
Wed Sep 22 10:00:00 EDT 2010

After a careful (very careful!) study of all available weather information, we left Shelburne Harbor as Hurricane Igor was headed for Newfoundland, wanting to take advantage of the favorable winds that Igor would create for us in the Gulf of Maine. The clouds overhead all pointed to where Igor was (several hundred miles away) at the time.

Fri Sep 24 16:33:22 EDT 2010 | George Ray
How are the main reefing lines working out?
Sat Sep 25 6:13:27 EDT 2010 | Richard Hudson
The main reefing lines (which let the mainsail be reefed from the cockpit) are working out quite well--it is much easier to reef than it was before. Your idea of running the clew lines outside the boom, rather than inside it (which would have required more hardware) worked well.
Schooner in Shelburne
Richard
Tue Sep 21 10:00:00 EDT 2010, Shelburne, Nova Scotia, Canada

We sailed into the pretty and very-well protected harbor of Shelburne for a short visit. This pretty gaff schooner was sailing in the harbor as we entered.

I've only been to Shelburne once before, in my old schooner Orbit II. I had singlehanded from Provincetown (Cape Cod) and ran into Shelburne just ahead of a gale. Shelburne has a long harbor, offering excellent protection from storms. I had just gotten the anchor down and the sails all tied and gone below when the gale arrived. I was exhausted from the lack of sleep (it was my first singlehanded sail), and extremely glad to be down below where it was dry as the wind howled and the rain and hail pounded on the cabintop. So I have pleasant memories of Shelburne.

Sailing SW
Gabriela/Richard
Sun Sep 19 10:00:00 EDT 2010

We have been enjoying sailing southwest. It is quite noticeable that summer is ending as the days are shorter and the nights longer, and as we sail south, the temperatures keep getting warmer. Even the rain (which is frequent) seems warm.

While the location shown is where we are, Gabriela took this picture of Issuma sailing in this area a few months ago.

Wind Generators and Petroleum Tanks
Richard
Sat Sep 18 10:00:00 EDT 2010, Port Hawkesbury, Nova Scotia, Canada

We motored through the Strait of Canso, between Cape Breton Island and Nova Scotia. We anchored to sit out a gale in Port Hawkesbury, pretty much in the middle of the Strait of Canso, where this picture was taken.

Cape St Lawrence
Richard
Wed Sep 15 10:00:00 EDT 2010

We left the rain behind (on the left of the picture) as we passed the northern tip of Cape Breton Island.

Red Bay Beluga
Richard
Sun Sep 12 10:00:00 EDT 2010, Red Bay, Labrador, Canada

The wind finally let up in Battle Harbor and we sailed and motored 60 miles to Red Bay, in the Strait of Belle Isle, where we anchored in preparation for a NE gale the following day. The Strait of Belle Isle separates Newfoundland from Labrador.

The little beluga in the picture came over to the boat as we were entering Red Bay and stayed with us, swimming around and playing, for hours.

The preparations for the gale were straightforward. Red Bay is a very enclosed bay and we set the main anchor (88lb Raya) and a rope to a big rock. I had read that the mud on the bottom in this harbor was thin and didn't hold anchors well. We had no problems with the NE gale, but were somewhat dismayed to see that the forecast for favorable winds following the gale had changed to another gale from the north.

We reanchored, in the north part of the harbor, this time using the Raya anchor and the little Guardian (like a 40lb Fortress) anchor, each on about 150m of chain and rope. The Raya would likely have held us by itself, but one doesn't want to find out otherwise in the midst of a howling gale, so better to set two anchors if in any doubt. Both anchors hooked debris on the bottom, making bringing them back up a long process--quite useful for muscle-building (there is an electric anchor winch, but it only works with the chain on the main anchor, so the 80m of rope on the main anchor was lifted by leading the rope aft to a manual winch). Anyway, after two hours spent retrieving the anchors, we were able to leave the harbor and enjoy a brisk night sail down the Strait of Belle Isle.

Unfortunately, in the second gale, the wind generator (Air Breeze) died. So far, I have not been able to get it operating again. The wind generator supplied most of the electrical power onboard, so now computer use is much more limited, so there may be fewer blog entries.

After the gales, a big high pressure system moved in and we have since had clear, not-very-cold skies and pleasant winds.

Tue Sep 28 11:04:11 EDT 2010 | Kevin Howell
I had never seen or heard of Beluga's in Red Bay or along the coast; amazing.
I miss Red Bay; wish I was there...
Sat Oct 2 16:51:18 EDT 2010 | Richard Hudson
We were surprised to see the beluga also...first time I've seen one.

I wanted to spend more time in Red Bay, but we were pushing to get south and spent most of our time there in gales or preparations for gales.
Battle Harbor
Richard
Sat Sep 11 10:00:00 EDT 2010

Battle Harbor

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