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09/07/2010, Cleveland, OH

We had a very nice stay at Battery Park Marina in Sandusky, Ohio. Craig joined us on Saturday - bringing his 8 cases of beer, of course, Bill did manage somehow to find room for it all. Met a nice family there - Gary & Linda aboard 'Horizons' who will be leaving about the 15th to head south.

Left Sandusky on Monday but made it a short day and went to Lorain, OH. We stayed at Spitzer's Lakeside Marina. Not impressed at all. They put us at the end of the dock along with the TONS of bird shit and what looked like bones from dead birds. We went to the office and they said they charged $80 a night (absolutely way over priced) but since we had Boat US membership it would only be $60.00. Finally talked them into $50 based on the slip they gave us. While grilling dinner Bill & Martha aboard 'Eagle's Wings' pulled in. We met them at Port Sanilac on Lake Huron. They are heading home to Canada, going through the Welland Canal to Lake Ontario. We met a nice man, along with his dog Buddy, who is a security guard for the other Spitzer's marina. He drove us to the grocery store, then waited for us and drove us back to the marina.

We are staying at the Edgewater Yacht Club in Cleveland. Only $1.00 per foot for the first night and free the second night. As we were approaching Cleveland there was an air show going on that included the U.S. Navy Blue Angels. That was great to watch. Shortly after we pulled in two other cruising sailboats arrived from Sandusky - Jack & Kris aboard 'Renaissance' and Dan & Mariann aboard 'Midori'. We immediately knew they were going through the Erie Canal since both had their mast cradles already built, on the deck and ready to go - we were very impressed!! We got lots of great tips and even tried to talk Dan into building our cradle for us (ha ha). Both great couples heading to the Bahamas and we hope to see them again in our travels. Due to weather (AGAIN) looks like we may be here for a few days so we just may be heading for a Home Depot this morning to get lumber and nails to build our cradles while here. Tomorrow we may go to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

09/07/2010 | Keith
Finally got around to reading your ongoing saga. Very impressed by your "blogging diligence"! Be happy you're out of L. Superior, as there are 12 ft. waves today.
Did you get to the R & R Hall of Fame?
09/08/2010 | sharron
Hi glad your trip is going good. where is the pictures of your hair cuts. be safe love sharron
09/02/2010, Sandusky, OH

We made it to Lake Erie, current location is Sandusky, Ohio. We planned on staying last night in Toledo, Ohio. Couple of miles out of Toledo Bill calls the marinas and Yacht Clubs - either no slips available or too shallow. So, we turn around and scramble to figure out where we should go. Ended up deciding to go all the way to Sandusky arriving at 1:15 am. It was a bit hairy at the end with all the buoys to maneuver through, basically on instruments only. We called ahead to Battery Park Marina letting them know that we would not arrive until very early morning. They gave me the security guards phone number so I could call just before coming in to give us assistance finding the slip in the dark. Worked out great, the security guard was waiting for us, guiding us in with his flashlight. So far, only positive things to say about the marina.

This is the marina we planned on staying at on Saturday night, waiting for Craig to arrive. This will give us a couple of days to rest up, clean up the boat and explore a little. I think we will try and locate a Sports Bar to go to this evening so we can watch the Vikings play on TV tonight. Looking at the weather we may not be able to leave until Monday, will have to see if forecast changes before then.

09/03/2010 | Craig Horn
Leaving in the morning...See you Saturday
08/31/2010, Detroit, MI

St Clair River and St Clair Lake were very nice, clear water with beautiful homes along the shoreline. We pulled into Kean's Marina at around 4:30, it is just inside the Detroit River. We pulled into the marina to locate our slip and missed it and had to pull out into the river to turn around - in that short amount of time we had weeds completely wrapped around the prop and found it difficult to steer the boat. Asked for someone from the marina to come to the slip to throw a line to - no one showed up. Don't know if it is all of the Detroit River or just this marina but it is full of weeds and scum - yuck! Most expensive marina we have been to so far. Max so far we have paid is $39 per night, this one is $55.50 per night. Seems to me we could get a motel room for that amount. The plus is it does have a swimming pool so plan on taking advantage of that since it is hot here today.

We have now stowed both the Lake Superior and Lake Huron chart books away. Tomorrow we will be in the last lake - Lake Erie.

09/22/2010 | Ed & Kolleen jones
Sorry you had a bad time at keans. We keep our boat their and like keens a lot. Its more of a yacht club than a marina with a bar, pool, store, and scheduled events. The weeds only acumulate around the main gas dock in front of the club house. Our slip is always clean. Sinbads next door is also a great place to eat. picnic areas are in front of every dock and many boaters share food and spirits and have become good friends.
08/30/2010, Port Huron, MI

We tried to leave Port Sanilac this morning but as soon as we left the harbor we started experiencing problems. Unusual noises then when I tried to speed up lots of black smoke coming out the exhaust from the engine and would not get past about 5 knots. Gauges all looked within normal range and couldn't see any issues but definitely something not right. So, back to Port Sanilac we went. Waited for a marine mechanic to take a look and see what the problem was. Of course, Bill and I expected the worst (engine rebuild). At $90 per hour for the mechanic we were crossing our fingers hoping for the best.

Mechanic arrives, takes him all of about 2 minutes to figure out the problem - weeds wrapped around the prop. The harbor is being dredged and lots of very tall weeds in the water. Bill puts his swimming trunks on and jumps in the water (about 72 degrees) and untangles handfuls of weeds from around the prop. Off we go again (only cost $37.50 to solve our problem) and again we get out of the harbor and the same thing happens - weeds around the prop. We slowed down and reversed a couple of times which then cut the weeds off the prop, resolving the problem.

We finally make it to the St. Clair River. The water current runs so swiftly that we were doing almost 9 knots (very fast for us) under the Blue Water Bridge. Just past the bridge is the Port Huron Yacht Club (PHYC). Bill called them and asked if they had any transient slips available and they did. What a great group of people! They are a racing yacht club with a wonderful club house building that includes a bar. We were amazed to find out that the first night to stay there was free. We really lucked out there - great people, free place to tie up for the night (including electric) and very, very cheap booze. Highly recommend anyone passing through here to check if they have space available (only enough space for about 4 transient boats).

Got to meet the eldest living Past Commodore of the Port Huron Yacht Club. George. At 87 he sill puts on several thousand hours on his Trawler Florence. Great guy!!!!

08/29/2010, Port Salinac Harbor, MI

We did a short hop yesterday from Harbor Beach to Port Sanilac - 5 hours. Port Sanilac is a very nice little town and marina. We are a little ahead of schedule so we have decided to stay a 2nd day. We will do some provisioning here, laundry and do some more research concerning having the mast shipped from Buffalo, NY to Catskill, NY. We have posted the shipment on and have had several bids ranging from $500 to $1,500. Of course, the ones who quote the high price think they will do a better job and state we should worry about the low bidders. Might be the truth but we will either go closer to the $500 or not have it shipped and carry on the boat instead.

We met some nice people in the slip next to us - Bill and Martha on 'Eagle's Wings'. They are from Ontario Canada and went through the Erie Canal a couple of years ago so they had some good info for us.

Tomorrow we will reach the St Clair River, St Clair Lake, the Detroit River and finally Lake Erie. The plan is now to meet our friends Craig and Becky Horn in Sandusky, Ohio next Saturday. Becky will head back home on Sunday and Craig will stay with us until the Hudson River, around Albany, NY. Craig informed Bill yesterday that he is bringing 8 cases of beer with him!! As usual, when Bill and Craig get together I am the sober one who is their memory so I can tell them all the things they said/did the night before. Neither one has a filter after tipping a few (more accurately a dozen each) so one or the other has been known to offend a person or two i.e. anything from mooning the Coast Guard to peeing off the side of the dock. But with all that, looking forward to Craig joining us - we always have a good time together and many stories to tell afterward.

08/30/2010 | Craig Horn
Beer in hand...looks good in my garage. Will see you Saturday. I'll bring pork chops and we will see what happens about a grill...Hey does this mean I am blogging???
09/26/2010 | Craig Horn
Is Dean and Chrissy still with you guys??
08/27/2010, Harbor Beach, MI

We decided to make up a couple of days by doing an over night passage. We left DeTour Village yesterday morning and arrived at Harbor Beach, MI at around 8:30 this morning. We motored the entire way, 23 hours. This helped to make up 3 days. Until around 2:30 this morning we had the wind at the stern so we were surfing going around 7.5 mps then changed and had waves at our bow going about 4.5 mph until we arrived here this morning. Bill did the 8:00 pm to 1:30 am watch, I did the 1:30 am to 5:30 am watch , then both of us for the last couple of hours. Neither one of us got much sleep so we are a little warn out today. First thing after getting settled in was go have breakfast. We had our usual breakfasts - huge portions at half the price we usually pay. The marina has courtesy bikes so we biked into town to look around after letting the breakfast settle.

We thought we were going to ground coming into the harbor - depth gauge reading 3.5 feet (we draw 5) but turned out there was plenty of depth just all the tall weeds in the water causing the discrepancy. Nice marina with helpful staff.

The sailboat next to us had to call BoatU.S. to come from Sanilac (around 35 miles away) to tow him - he got one of his lines wrapped around his prop and bent the shaft. First thing I did was check our towing coverage to verify I had it changed to Unlimited coverage. Luckily the times we have been grounded we were able to either kedge off ourselves or another helpful boater has come to our aide so we haven't needed to pay for towing (knock on wood). With all the rivers and canals coming up with our luck it will probably be a good thing that I had the insurance changed.

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