14 January 2012 | Warderick Wells, Bahamas
One of the many extra goodies that came with our purchase of Anastasia was her original hard dinghy. She is a lovely little rowing dinghy with a lapstrake hull to match that of her mother ship. Also like Anastasia she has wooden trim around the edge just above her rub rail.
We chose to leave Cougar behind for the first two seasons because we were not quite sure that we’d have a need for her. We have always had an inflatable, which are essential in the Bahamas for fishing and exploring. And who needs two dinghies? Well apparently we are now among those who do.
Over the summer Maxwell decided to shine his attention on this little forgotten dinghy. The thoughts of rowing around an anchorage romanced him into action. He spent much time repairing her wooden trim from years of neglect. She got all the necessary coats of Cetol and a blue Sunbrella cover over the rubber rub rail to match Anastasia’s canvas. We invested in bottom paint anticipating plenty of time in ICW waters, which indeed came in handy. While in Annapolis we purchased a nice set of long oars that make rowing a dream.
Cougar’s place on board is inverted, resting on top of the house, just behind the mast. Because she was made for Anastasia from the start she fits like a glove.
We have used Cougar exclusively until reaching the Bahamas this season. It was not until the Berry Islands that we finally pulled our Avon inflatable out from under the table and into action. Each has their purpose but I must confess that I prefer rowing around in Cougar to bouncing at high speeds in the inflatable.
I must say how we arrived at the name Cougar. We toyed around with all kinds of sweet little names like Lemon Drop, Banana and Sugar Snap but none of those seemed quite right. Finally we settled on Cougar. Now I don’t want to offend anyone but you are probably right in your assumption. She was old, used and really showing her age but we shined her up, gave her some gloss and bam! You have a Cougar! It stuck.