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The Grander Scheme: s/v Northern Symphony
Another simple dream...Another crazy notion: To make a sequel to our Grand Scheme by making an extended great loop starting from our home in Nova Scotia. One boat, two so-called adults, one or two children, and one cat.
Catawba Island
16 July 2004

What a great day! We zipped out of the marina at 0645 this morning and ate breakfast underway after motoring past downtown Detroit (the picture is of the Renaisance Center) and under the Ambassador Bridge that links Detroit and Windsor, Ontario. After a few more hours of motoring down the Detroit River, we entered Lake Erie proper for the first time. The winds we light and we motorsailed for a while until they built up to 8-10 knots which was enough for a couple hours of very enjoyable sailing. Finally, the died away again and we motor-sailed the last couple of hours to Catawba Island, Ohio...Finally! We are out of Michigan and into Ohio: only 50 miles to Cleveland. But, a couple of hours after we arrived, the rain/thunder storms caught up with us and we'll probably have to stay here tomorrow.

15 July 2004

As planned, we went to the Zoo/Aquarium today...Unfortunately, the Belle Isle Zoo closed a few years ago but we enjoyed the aquarium and the Conservatory gardens and the kids got to play on a huge playground for awhile. In the afternoon, we returned to the marina for swimming and reading. It turns out that this was the first day of the annual hydroplane races and so they closed the river in front of the marina so nobody would get in the way of the lunatics going around the course at 200mph! I'm not sure I'd want to watch 4 days of racing, but it is simply incredible to see something moving that fast. Tommorrow we'll have to slip out early to avoid the river closure...

14 July 2004

We have moved less than 20 miles down to Detroit, itself. We left promptly this morning because the winds were expected to get stronger in the afternoon. As it it was, we had 15-25 knots of wind on Lake St. Clair and, with the wind behind us, we made 6.5 knots with just a working jib! After an hour and a half running down the shore, we came to the entrance to the Detroit River and motored into the channel and the few remaining miles to Harbor Hill marina, where we are now. This marina is very nice and the kids had fun using the swimming pool (!) in between rain squalls. At one point, we had 27 knots of wind in the marina...with rain to match! We plan to stay here two nights so we can explore Detroit a little tomorrow....The picture is actually from yesterday: Leslie discovered that fish were hanging out under our dock and, after a half-hour of trying, succeeded in catching one in her net (It was returned to the lake after the photo session).

Saint Clair Shores
13 July 2004

A meltingly hot day with both the temperature and humidity in the upper 90's...groan. We tried doing some boat projects this morning but were thwarted by an inability to think clearly and work efficiently under the conditions...We ended up taking a long ride in the (air-conditioned) car, having dinner out, and going to see the new Harry Potter movie again. Now its cooled some and we are looking forward to the numerous thunderstorms that are supposed to be coming later this evening. Scourge has pretty well melted...

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